Pairing Wine with the Cliffhouse "Tuxedo" Strawberries
When pairing desserts with wine, the first step is often to match relative levels of sweetness. When the dessert is sweeter than the wine, you may find your glass has an astringent, sour or bitter flavor. Conversely, a very sweet wine with a delicate dessert such as fresh fruit can make the dessert seem green, tart, or acidic. Unless it is your intention to improve upon a weak quality in one or the other (a very dry Champagne will make almost any strawberry taste sweet, to the Champagnes' detriment, and a Key Lime Pie can make German Auselese Riesling taste like Ice Wine, at the pies expense), it is usually best to be commensurate in the amounts of sugar or perceived sweetness in each.
When pairing the Cliffhouse "Tuxedo" Strawberries, we have several components to consider: strawberries - arguably a classic Champagne pairing, white chocolate - often best with a creamy white wine, and dark chocolate - begging for the robust flavors of California Cabernet or Zinfandel. Fortunately the dark chocolate is a small part of the "Tuxedo", making this dessert a little easier to pair with wine.
There is no doubt; a few bubbles in your glass with this refined dessert is a delightful way to end your meal. I would recommend a sweeter style of sparkling wine to better compliment both the strawberries and the wine. An ideal pairing may be a Moscato D'Asti, from the Piedmont in Italy. Moscato D'Asti, made from the Moscato Bianco grape is a delicate, low alcohol, fruity wine that is often served with dessert. It is likely this wine will be slightly sweeter than your dessert, placing the emphasis on the wine. To focus more on dessert, you may try a slightly dryer style of sparkler. I recommend a Cava from the Penedes region of Spain. Look for an "Extra Seco" or a "Seco" Cava for the appropriate level of sweetness. Freixenet and Codorniu are two popular, consistent and readily available Cavas. Enjoy!