Chocolate & Beer Tasting Class Recap

Chocolate & Beer Tasting Class Recap

Mar 31, 2024Stefania Pede

Our second Beer & Chocolate Tasting Class with Old Flame Brewery (Newmarket) was held on March 24th, 2024. In case you missed it, here's a recap of the event and a selection of beer & chocolates we paired together. You can always grab a box of our chocolates and head up the street to Old Flame (140 Main St. S.) and test out the pairings for yourself. 



1. Old Flame Blonde with 35% Ivoire white chocolate (feve) and our Strawberry Lemonade Bonbon. 

2. Old Flame Raven with 32% Dulcey caramelized white chocolate (feve) and our Coconut Caramel Bonbon (dairy-free/vegan-friendly). 

3. Old Flame "Where's The Smoke?" (Smoked Beer) with 70% Guanaja dark chocolate (feve) and our Black Forest Bonbon

4. Old Flame "Alter Ego" Double IPA with 70% Guanaja dark chocolate (feve) and our Mango Passionfruit Bonbon (dairy-free/vegan-friendly).

5. BONUS: Old Flame Brunette with our Caramel & Milk Chocolate Covered Malt Balls. 

What goes into creating a chocolate and beer event?

Did you know? Chocolate has over 600 flavour compounds that you can taste? Beer has a similar flavour wheel compound chart, but it's significantly smaller in size with about 120 flavour compounds. Using these charts, we can identify which groupings of flavours can be paired together and which ones should be avoided.


When we first decided to do a second event, Stefania (Chocolatier at Cocoa40), Alex (Head Brewer at Old Flame) and Ariana (Event Manager of Old Flame) all sat down with 15 flavours of chocolate bonbons, 4 types of feves (solid chocolate couverture), a notepad and some beers to figure out which pairings match up the best.

What's interesting to note is that some of the flavour combinations we thought would match well & highlight the flavours of both the chocolate and beer, actually drowned out the flavour profile of both. This happens when either the chocolate or the beer is too overpowering which effectively drowns the other flavours out. We didn't want our guests to experience this during the tasting event which is the purpose of the trial run. We were also waiting for the last 2 beers (Where's The Smoke & Alter Ego), that Alex had been working on, to finish production. 

During our trial run, Stefania explained what flavours were present in that particular bonbon and Alex discussed the flavours of the beer. When combined, the ideal flavour pairing should transform the flavours in the beer and highlight secondary notes. For instance, during the trial run, we noticed that the hoppy flavour of the Double IPA was reduced with the fruity Mango Passionfruit bonbon. This allowed for the richness of the beer to shine through and flavours to linger on your palette. We spent the afternoon tasting, pairing and discussing how the flavours changed. Eventually we discovered the perfect lineup for our event which included 4 delicious combinations and 1 bonus round. 2 of the beers included in the tasting class are from the Old Flame's regular menu and 2 were from the new menu (available on tap in the Newmarket location). 

Does everyone taste the same things in a pairing event?

Although we designed the pairings to accentuate certain flavours (in the chocolate and beer), not everyone is going to taste the same things. We all come from different backgrounds and experiences which means our palettes are used to tasting different flavour notes. Some people are more sensitive to bitterness, citrus and salt while others are more sensitive to flavours like caramel, floral and earthy. So while you may taste a chocolate or beer and notice distinct flavours, your partner, friend or family member may not notice those flavours at all. 

If you found this blog post interesting or you're curious to know more about beer and chocolate tastings, tune into our social media where we'll announce future tastings classes!

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