Featured Basket – All the Cellar’s Best

 

Wine and cheese is a match made in heaven. When properly paired, they bring out greater complexities in one another, leading to a more enjoyable tasting experience. Enjoy Hickory Farms‘ gourmet wine and cheese with our All the Cellar’s Best basket. These simple pairing tips will bring such a burst of flavor; it will make you appreciate tastes like you never had before.

When you’re new to pairing, there are two primary rules to follow for selecting your wine and cheese combinations — match acidity and power of flavor. This will keep your pairings balanced and prevent strong cheeses from overwhelming mild wines or vice versa. You’ll also want to bring your cheeses to room temperature before tasting. When tasting, try your wine first, followed by a bite of cheese.

 

Semi-hard cheeses, such as our 3 Year Aged Cheddar, are some of the most versatile cheeses for pairing. Try them with anything from a bold red to a sweet white to bring out new nuances of flavor.

The smoked cheeses in our All the Cellar’s Best basket make a great pairing with a good red wine with nice oak notes. Pair it with the Clos du Bois Pinot Noir included in the basket. This will highlight the smokiness and really make the flavors pop.

 

One of the wonderful things about cheeses with distinct flavors is that they can be paired in multiple ways. For greater contrast, try a crisp wine, such as a Pinot Grigio or, to play up the pepper notes, try a Sauvignon Blanc. Pairing multiple wines with one cheese is a great way to really showcase the wine’s influence on the taste of the cheese.

 

Blue veined cheeses, like our Smoked Blue Cheese, are another great pairing partner. Bring out the intense, nutty flavors of this cheese with a bold red. The salty finish also pairs well with a sweet port for a surprising and delicious dessert course.

With these tips and the gourmet wine and cheese in our All the Cellar’s Best basket, you’ll have everything you need to enjoy a fantastic tasting party. You may even discover some new favorite flavor combinations!

Don’t Guess People’s Taste – Give Them a Hickory Farms Gift Card

Hickory Farms gift cards
Hickory Farms understands that it can be hard to choose gifts for loved ones. Luckily, we’ve made gift-giving a breeze by offering Hickory Farms gift cards in amounts of $25, $50 and $100 for you to give to business clients, colleagues and friends.

To help you get a jump start on your holiday shopping, we’ve found some great gift suggestions for every taste and preference.

Gifts for Women

Family gift ideas from Hickory Farms

Source: Jens Mortensen via Real Simple

This trio of hand creams by Tocca from Sephora will keep hands soft and sweetly scented all winter. Reasonably priced at $20, this item is perfect for a Secret Santa or office gift exchange with pre-set spending limits.

Corporate holiday gift ideas from Hickory Farms

Hickory Farms Petits Fours

A gift box of Hickory Farms petits fours makes a nice communal offering for your office mates and is on sale now for only 17.99!

Family gift ideas from Hickory Farms

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A warm alpaca infinity scarf will keep anyone snug and cozy on cold, windy days.

Gifts for Men

Hickory Farms gifts

Hickory Farms Tastes of the Trade Tool Bag

Hickory Farms Tastes of the Trade Tool Bag  is chock full of everything a man needs to snack on during football games — 100% beef summer sausage, two kinds of savory cheeses, two varieties of crackers and spiced almonds, plus a reusable tool bag for extra storage space!

Family gift ideas from Hickory Farms

Source: Jens Mortensen via Real Simple

He’ll love a unique flask with its own shot glass stopper — especially one that’s a perfect hip pocket fit.

Hickory Farms gifts.

Source: Jens Mortensen via Real Simple

A selection of dapper pocket squares will add the finishing touches to his business suits and keep him fashionable all season long.

Don’t stress over holiday gift-giving. Use our suggestions and finish your shopping early by purchasing a selection of gift cards or other Hickory Farm gifts,  so you’re never caught empty-handed by surprise. Stop by your local Hickory Farms store, order online, or call 800.753.8558 to make sharing the holiday spirit a little easier this year!

The Truth About Wine & Chocolate

We know what you are thinking, and no – this is not a post about the health benefits of wine and chocolate. Because let’s be honest, it’s all about moderation!

If you’ve been following our blog recently, you may have noticed that we’ve been delving into the art of wine tasting and wine pairing, with topics including How to Host a Wine Tasting and Wine & Cheese Pairing 101. Today, we’re going to talk about wine and chocolate!

wine baskets

Source: YMC

To the dismay of foodies and sommeliers, the idea of pairing red wine and chocolate is a popular misconception that continues to gain traction. We hate to be the bearer of bad news to red wine lovers and choco-holics, but these two treats together, in fact, is not always a match made in heaven.

“Everybody loves the idea of pairing chocolate and wine, and with good reason,” Ray Isle of Food & Wine says, “But the flavors of chocolate and wine aren’t always that compatible. And the culprit is the chocolate.”

As Sarah Chappell of Serious Eats explains, the sweetness of chocolate when combined with a dry red wine will result in a bitter and sour aftertaste that is not as pleasant.

Like wine, chocolate is complex. In addition to being sweet, chocolate can also be bitter, acidic and sometimes fruity. The only wines that pair well with the intense flavors of chocolate are those that have equal intensity of sweetness and fruitiness.

The most important rule to remember is never to pair chocolate with a table red wine. There is only one exception to this rule, and that is if chocolate is coming in the form of a subtle ingredient in a sauce. A hint of chocolate in a steak sauce, for instance, goes great with a robust red. When it comes to desserts, however, always pair chocolate with a sweet dessert wine.

Hickory Farms has gourmet gifts for both wine and chocolate lovers. Visit our online store to learn more about our selection of wine gifts and our Italian Ice Cream Truffles, a summer favorite.