Wine & Chocolate Theme Party

A wine and chocolate tasting party is the perfect theme for adults whether it’s a birthday celebration or a dessert party. Indulge in a variety of chocolates and wines by following these tips for pairing flavors, plus decoration ideas.

party table set up with bottles of wine and lots of chocolate and dried fruit for tasting.

There are many traditional ideas for hosting a party at home, but why not do something different by offering chocolate and wine pairings. You can add a twist to a cocktail party, have a chocolate party for ladies night, or make it a dessert option for any dinner party.

A wine and chocolate tasting is a fun theme party for adults whether you want to celebrate a birthday, a seasonal gathering, or just because! It’s a bit more unique than a wine and cheese party and it’s total indulgence!

Why You’ll Love This Theme

  • Unique and fun. Sweet lovers and wine lovers alike will adore this theme.
  • No cooking required. Just open the wine, unwrap the chocolate, add in some accompaniments, and serve.
  • Easy to host. Since you don’t have to cook you can easily host this with minimal notice and preparation.
  • Versatile. Host it as a stand alone theme or incorporate it into another gathering. For instance, it would be a great interactive activity for a shower or Valentine’s day get-together.
  • You don’t have to be an expert. When hosting parties, it’s more about having a good time than following stringent rules. This doesn’t need to be a wine class, it’s more about finding individual preferences and having delicious food and drink.
party table set up with bottles of wine and lots of chocolate and dried fruit for tasting.

How To Host A Wine & Chocolate Theme

Start planning 2 to 3 weeks out so you can send invitations, shop for interesting chocolates, and find the right wines to serve. I think winter is a terrific time for this theme because it’s so cozy and comforting.

Since this party is all about the sweets and wine, make sure guests know they should have dinner beforehand. You can offer this up as a dessert party if you like, and give a start time of 8pm.

Alternatively, you can host an entire night of fun with dinner and chocolate tasting afterwards.

Gather everything you need to set up a table and decorate. A color palette of brown goes with the chocolate theme beautifully.

Decorations and Setting Up

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Brown tablecloth. What could be more apropos than using a chocolate brown tablecloth? Or, use a twin size flat sheet for an inexpensive table covering.

party table with wine and chocolate board with dried flowers centerpiece.

Centerpiece. It’s nice to have a decorative centerpiece whether it’s fresh flowers, dried pampas grass, table lanterns, or a glass jar filled with wine corks.

Plenty of wine glasses. Use all-purpose wine glasses that are suitable for both white and red wine. Have enough for each guest, plus a few for backup if needed. If serving champagne, have flute glasses too.

long wood board with chocolate pieces and dried fruit on party table.

Wood boards or bowls for food. I used long planks that look like wood but are actually ceramic floor tiles! Pile on the chocolate pieces in groupings, separated by groupings of dried fruit. You’re basically creating a long charcuterie board display.

chocolate pieces on long board with labels.

Labels. It’s important that your guests know what they’re tasting so they know what to pair it with. Offer tags that let them know what type of chocolate it is.

printed sign in table frame with chocolate and wine pairings listed.

Table sign. Print out a sign and frame it to offer a guide to your guests about which chocolates may taste best with which wines.

Cocktail napkins. You always need plenty of paper cocktail napkins and cute wine themed napkins are a fun way to carry out the idea of the night.

party table with wine and chocolate board with dried fruit.

Chocolate & Accompaniments

There’s an endless array of options when choosing chocolate. From spice infused, to fruit and nut infused, to variations of dark chocolate, etc.

I suggest serving one of each basic type: white, milk, and dark. From there you can add in some flavored variations like caramel, peanut butter, nuts, and dried fruits. Here’s an example of what I served.

  • White chocolate
  • Milk chocolate  
  • Dark chocolate – I like 70% cocoa for a mildly sweet taste.
  • Chocolate with Sea Salt
  • Chocolate with chili
  • Chocolate with orange
  • Chocolate with almonds
  • Chocolate with Caramel


Adding some nibbles on the side can add to the tasting experience. I like to have dried fruit because it’s a natural pairing and often included in chocolate bars. Plus they can help cleanse the palate between tastings. Here are my suggestions.

  • Dried papaya
  • Dried strawberries
  • Dried cherries
  • Dried cranberries
  • Dried apricots
  • Dried pineapple
  • Raisins
  • Dried figs
  • Dried dates
photo collage of chocolate pieces, and chocolate board with dried fruit.

Perfect Pairings

Here’s a list of pairings to help get you started. But remember, the focus is on experimentation and fun. You don’t have to be a wine connoisseur to enjoy this theme party!

There are several suggestions which will allow you to compare and contrast certain wine with the chocolate.

White chocolateDried orangesRiesling, Chardonnay, Moscato, White Zinfandel, Champagne
Milk chocolateDried strawberriesPinot Noir, Syrah, Rosé, Riesling, Champagne
Dark chocolateDried apricotsMerlot, Shiraz, Cabernet Sauvignon, Malbec, Chianti, Port
Chocolate w/ sea saltDried cherriesShiraz, Merlot, Pinot Noir
Chili infusedDried figs or pineappleSyrah, Port, Cabernet Franc
Orange infusedDried pineapplePinot Grigio, Bordeaux
Chocolate w/ almondsDried cherriesShiraz, Port
Chocolate w/ caramelDried cranberriesPinot Noir, Port
chocolate and wine tasting party table with sign.

How To Do A Tasting

Start by tasting your wine and chocolate separately so you can fully appreciate how they pair together. Then follow these steps.

  1. Swirl your glass of wine to aerate it.
  2. Sniff the wine for its bouquet.
  3. Take a sip of wine.
  4. Bite a piece of Chocolate and hold it on the tongue.
  5. When chocolate begins to dissolve, take another sip of wine.
  6. Let the chocolate and wine mingle together in your mouth before swallowing.

Expert Tips

If you’d like to host a wine & chocolate tasting party there are a few key points to keep in mind. Once you learn these basic “rules” you can experiment with your pairings as well as with the chocolates that you offer for tasting.

  • The first thing to keep in mind is that your wine should be as sweet or sweeter than the chocolate. Otherwise, you can end up with a bitter or sour taste.
  • You’ll also want to pair lighter chocolates with lighter and sweeter wines. Full-bodied wines should be paired with darker chocolates.
  • As with all wine tasting, begin with the lightest pairings and end with the darkest. In between each tasting, cleans your palette with small bread cubes or oyster crackers before moving to the next one. 
  • Find an array of good quality chocolate bars in stores and online. Break them up in bite-size pieces that are easy for guests to pick up and eat. Include white, milk and dark chocolate, plus flavor infused varieties.
  • The bottom line is to create your own perfect match by tasting different chocolates and wines together. Determine if the rules apply or if you like to venture outside the lines.
chocolate dipped bacon, pretzels, and potato chips in bowls on brown table.


Add some salty snacks to help balance the sweets, but make it chocolate dipped!

  • Make chocolate drizzled potato chips, chocolate dipped pretzels, and bacon.
  • Chocolate dipped orange slices, dry apricots, dry pineapple are delicious.
  • Include fresh strawberries and cherries dipped in chocolate.

Chocolate Dessert Recipes

Once you’ve done your basic tasting you can enjoy more complete desserts as well.  Include one or more of these chocolate treats.

With these tips and some quality ingredients you’ll be on your way to a fabulous chocolate and wine tasting theme party.

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I wrote this article as it first appeared here during my time as a contributing writer for Tablespoon. I thought I’d update it and bring the topic to Celebrations At Home as well.

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  1. I've been told that chocolate tastes so much better when an elegant woman is wearing a sophisticated and sexy dress, with just the right heels. Far superior to a jeans and t-shirt tasting experience