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Clearview chocolates – a little piece of paradise

27 November 2012

Clearview chocolates – a little piece of paradise

Combining wine and chocolate may be a combination made in heaven for some, but in reality it’s a sweet collaboration coming out of Te Awanga on Hawke’s Bay’s Cape Coast.

Clearview Estate Winery and local (yet French) chocolatier, Anissa Talbi of La Petite Chocolat have joined forces to create two special dessert wine chocolates, one featuring Sea Red and the other, Late Harvest Chardonnay.

Packaged in beautifully designed 100 gm gift packs, the chocolates have made an impressive launch at Hawke’s Bay Farmers’ Markets, and on both businesses’ websites. The Sea Red chocolates also grace Clearview’s restaurant menu and are enthusiastically ordered, with a glass of the dessert wine and chocolate special, allowing diners to experience the duo.

Sea Red is a fortified wine style pioneered by Clearview Estate’s winemaker Tim Turvey nearly three decades ago, while the hand and whole bunch late-picked Chardonnay exhibits apricot and mandarin aromas with nutty flavours.

For Tim, discovering a chocolatier as a neighbour proved the inspiration to embark on the collaboration.

“I had an idea that the dense berry fruits and plum flavours of the Sea Red would be enhanced by the taste of chocolate, and Anissa has been able to create the exact balance. We were so excited that we immediately gave her our other dessert wine, the Late Harvest Chardonnay to experiment with too,” says Tim.

Moroccan-born Frenchwoman Anissa, works from the kitchen of Te Awanga Estate winery, which adjoins Clearview’s ocean-side vines and restaurant. Formerly a teacher, she quit her profession two years ago and spent four months training under an 80 year old chocolate master who had never before taken on a student. Now married to a Kiwi, Anissa has settled in Te Awanga and is creating divine handcrafted chocolate.

She uses single origin, organic, Fairtrade chocolate and her products are also dairy free using only the finest couverture chocolate. For the Sea Red chocolates Anissa has used 66 percent cocoa from Sao Tome, while the Late Harvest Cardonnay is made with 59 percent cocoa from the Dominican Republic.

Without wishing to reveal her recipe, Annissa says that working with “such quality products it did not take me long to work out the proportions of which chocolate to use with each wine”. She adds “The sweetness of the wine, the Sea Red with its berry and plums, and the apricot flavours of the Late Harvest Chardonnay make a really smooth, fruity combination that adds to that of the chocolate.”

The 100 gms chocolate packs sell for $14.50 and can be found on www.clearviewestate.co.nz and www.lapetitechocolat.co.nz

Background Information

Established by Tim Turvey and Helma van den Berg in 1989, Clearview Estate continues as a family owned and operated business – handcrafted wines are grown, produced and bottled onsite. Renowned for award-winning Chardonnays and full bodied red wines, their rustic and iconic ‘red shed’ restaurant pioneered vineyard seaside dining in 1991 by combining a cellar door in a leafy vineyard courtyard setting.

Situated on the coastline of Hawke's Bay at Te Awanga, the Estate enjoys a unique microclimate, virtually frost-free with a warm, extended growing season and refreshing sea breezes. Clearview Estate focuses on quality; producing wines of great fruit intensity with a strong commitment to sustainability in all aspects of the business.

ENDS

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