Pacific Rim
October 18, 2021 | Pacific Rim

Do Red Wine Brownies Exist?

Do Red Wine Brownies Exist?

Oh, my goodness, yes!  But better than those commercials with Santa Claus and the talking M&M candies, these really DO exist!  If you have never tasted red wine brownies, you are missing a major treat. Red wine brownies are not only easy to make but have a delicious taste. The red wine adds a distinctive flavor and aroma to the brownies. 

There are many red wine brownies recipes online calling for red wine to be added to the baking mixture. While some people add cherries to increase the flavor, you can add almonds, walnuts, pistachios, or pecans, as well. The brownies can have a chocolate layer of frosting if you wish. 

To make the red wine brownies, you can either make the baking mix at home from scratch or buy a pre-made mix from a grocery store. All you have to do is swap the red wine for the water.

What Red Wines Can You Use?

Since brownie mix is usually sweet, to begin with, avoid using sweet red wine or bubbly red wine. Instead, select a medium or dry red wine with a moderate amount of tannins, fruity and aromatic tones like Merlot, Pinot Noir, Port, Syrah, Sangiovese (the main grape in Chianti), and lighter-style Cabernets. The extra heat during the baking process will accentuate the flavor of the wine. 

If you are using a medium red wine, then you can replace it with water, but if you are using a very dry red wine, then use a combination of half red wine and half water. 

The red wine brownies go very well with vanilla ice cream. This dessert is a great idea on a warm summer evening after having finished a barbecue. Eating red wine brownies will not make you “tipsy” because the alcohol will evaporate during the baking process.


  • Ready-made brownie mix (one box)
  • 2 eggs
  • Vegetable or olive oil (half a cup)
  • 5 tablespoons red wine of your choice


  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees F
  • Use a non-stick pan or spray a regular pan
  • Combine all ingredients in a mixing bowl and mix well
  • Transfer the mixture to the pan
  • Place in oven for 25-35 minutes (the time for baking will be stated on the box)
  • Remove from oven and let cool
  • Apply a chocolate frosting, nuts, almonds, etc., if desired
  • Serve with vanilla ice cream (if desired)

This is a wonderful idea and a great treat!  If you have any questions about the wines you can mix with the brownies, call Pacific Rim and Company at 1.503.863.5454.

Time Posted: Oct 18, 2021 at 12:04 PM Permalink to Do Red Wine Brownies Exist? Permalink
Pacific Rim
October 14, 2021 | Pacific Rim

Do Red Wine and Chocolate Go Together?

Do Red Wine and Chocolate Go Together?

The wine chocolate pairing can be a contentious issue. Some wine drinkers say that wine and chocolate do not mix, while others say the exact opposite. This debate arises because wine drinkers often fail to pair the right wine with the right type of chocolate. 

red wine and chocolate

Just like there are sweet, medium-dry, and dry wines, there are also different types of chocolates (milk, dark, white). Thus, before you can pair wine and chocolate, here are a few things you should know:

  1. Keep things simple.
  2. Both red and white wines can be paired with chocolates.
  3. In general, if the chocolate is sweet, the wine should be sweeter to wash down the palate.
  4. If you are just starting to learn about wine chocolate pairing, start by pairing light wines with lighter chocolates and then move forward.
  5. Some wine and chocolate have strong dry flavors. For example, if you select dark bittersweet chocolate and pair it with a strong dry wine like Port, the combination can flood the palate and numb the taste. In general, when pairing wine and chocolate, select a wine that is fruitier, softer, and less dry than the chocolate.
  6. If the chocolate is bitter, then select a sweet wine to balance the bitter taste of the cocoa.
  7. Mix and match. Select a lighter body wine if the chocolate is mild and less intense, like Cadbury's dairy milk. Similarly, if the chocolate has a strong aroma, is intense and bitter, go with a bottle of strong dry wine.
  8. Chocolate accessories. These days many chocolates contain raisins, almonds, nuts, caramel, or cream. For example, if you are eating fruity chocolate, you may want to pair it with a wine with mild fruity undertones like Piemonte, Brachetto d'Acqui, Banyuls, or sparkling wine. If the chocolate is packed with nuts, then try pairing it with Port, Madeira, or Oloroso Sherry.
  9. If you are eating white chocolate rich in cream and cocoa, you may want to select a light white or red wine to wash off the palate. Wines that pair with white chocolate include Sweet Rose, Sherry, Riesling, Orange Muscat, and Moscato d'Asti. Or you may want to select an ice wine.
  10. If you are consuming the regular brown chocolate rich in butter, cocoa, and cream, pair it with a mild fruity wine like Merlot, Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, Riesling, or Muscat. Almost any dessert wine or champagne will pair well with regular chocolate.
  11. Dark chocolates tend to be bitter and have high tannin content, and are best paired with wines that also have a robust content of tannins like Merlot, Madeira, Port, Sherry, Cabernet Sauvignon, or Zinfandel. You may also want to try a sweet sparkling wine.

At the end of the day, it is not practical to have every type of wine to match the chocolate you eat. The more you read about wine chocolate pairing, the more confused you may get. If you want something simple that works, then go with the tried and tested wine options that cover a broad collection of chocolates, including Madeira, Port, Sherry, or Grenache Driven Banyuls. 

If you do not have these wines around the house, use any sparkling or bubbly wine, and you will not go wrong. For questions about wine and chocolate, Riesling wines, or virtually any other wine questions, call Pacific Rim and Company at 1.503.863.5454. They will have the answers because they are wine experts.

Time Posted: Oct 14, 2021 at 7:40 AM Permalink to Do Red Wine and Chocolate Go Together? Permalink
Pacific Rim
October 5, 2021 | Pacific Rim

Should Riesling Be Refrigerated?

Like most beverages, to really enjoy wine, one needs to drink it at the right temperature. Unfortunately, many people buy wine, go home, and automatically put it into the refrigerator, thinking that cold is the best way to drink wine. It is important to know, however, what Riesling serving temperature is best. Serving very cold or very warm wine to your guests may not go over well for your dinner party. 

Know How to Reveal the Right Character of the Wine

Should Riesling be refrigerated?  Experts recommend serving wine at the right temperature as this reveals its character, flavor profile, and aroma. If the wine is either too cold or too warm, you will miss out on these important wine features. The one thing you should never do is store wine in the freezer.  

Other than the risk of explosion, the wine will lose its taste, and the aroma will disappear.  That is definitely a “no-no.”  Today, Riesling wine has become as popular as Chardonnay, but the big question is, “What is the correct Riesling serving temperature?”

What is the Correct Riesling Serving Temperature?

In general, white wines taste great when they are slightly chilled and the same applies to Riesling wines. The degree of coolness, however, is critical. The Riesling serving temperature is best at between 45-50 degrees Fahrenheit (F) (or 7-9 degrees Celsius [C]). If you place Riesling wine in the refrigerator overnight, it will typically attain a temperature of around 37 degrees F (3 degrees C). 

This is a little too cold as a Riesling serving temperature. You should, therefore, let the wine rest at room temperature for about five minutes before serving to attain a temperature of approximately 45-50 degrees F. 

Don’t Remove the Wine From the Refrigerator Too Soon

Remove the wine from the refrigerator just before you are going to serve it. Premature removing the Riesling wine from the refrigerator and letting it sit at room temperature for a long time will erase some of the aroma. After serving the wine, place it in an ice bucket and use a thermometer to monitor the temperature. The cooler temperatures will provide a balance between the sweetness, acidity, and tannic qualities of the wine.  

Should Riesling be refrigerated?  The best way to know what temperature to serve Riesling is by taking a few bottles of the wine and storing them at cold, room, and warm temperatures. Try each to determine the taste, flavor, and aroma. 

In the end, it is all a matter of personal preference. Some wine connoisseurs like their wine to be cold, and others like it to be at room temperature. If you are serving Riesling wine and want to enjoy it to the fullest, chill it at 45-50 degrees F first, and it will interact with your meal better to complement all the flavors.  Call Pacific Rim and Company at 503-863-5454 to get answers to your questions about all things Riesling because they are experts.

Time Posted: Oct 5, 2021 at 1:37 PM Permalink to Should Riesling Be Refrigerated? Permalink
Pacific Rim
September 30, 2021 | Pacific Rim

What is The Best Wine with Salad?

Ask ten wine experts which wine is best paired with a salad, and you will likely get a hundred different answers. The salad may sound like a simple dish, but it has many ingredients that can influence the taste. Besides the proteins, veggies, fruits, cheeses, and possible nuts, you also have to consider dozens of dressings, all of which have a different taste. 

gourmet caesar salad with glass of white wine

Hence, there is no one particular wine that goes with every salad.  It all depends on the type of salad and the dressing. Here are some simple guidelines that will help you pair your favorite wine with salad.

  1. In general, if a dish is light, you also want to pair it with a light-bodied wine and vice versa. If a dish is heavier, pair it with a heavier wine.
  2. Salads are considered to be a low-calorie dish with ingredients that are usually not overpowering to the palate. In such scenarios, a light-bodied red (e.g., Gamay, Lambrusco, Grenache) or light-bodied white wine (e.g., Pinot Grigio, Riesling, Sauvignon Blanc) will pair well.
  3. Anytime you have a main course that includes a meat dish (like steak, lamb, or barbecued meats), you need to match the wine to the meat and not the veggies. In this case, the best pairing is a light-bodied wine, like Pinot Grigio, Dolcetto, or Riesling.
  4. If you like to add vinegar to your salad, this flavoring will alter the taste balance by accentuating the tannins in red wines and making the white wines taste very sweet. To minimize the impact of vinegar, you may want to mix it with a creamy dressing (e.g., ranch, blue cheese, etc...) or blend it in the leftover meat juices. Or you may want to try a less harsh vinegar, like cider or rice vinegar.
  5. If you love herbs, onions, and pickles in your salads, these foods can be overpowering and minimize the flavor of light wines. Therefore, you will need to pair them with wines having high levels of acidity or dry wines. Some great dry red wines include Malbec, Pinot Noir, and Cabernet; the dry white wines include Riesling, Chenin Blanc, Sauvignon Blanc, and Pinot Gris.
  6. If you like to eat a fruity salad, they match well with fruity wines, like Moscato, Zinfandel, Merlot, Pinot Noir, or Gamay. However, the key is to ensure that the wine has a different fruity flavor to the fruit in the salad.
  7. If there is more than one salad type with all flavors, then the best choices are the fruity red wines (e.g., Merlot, Grenache, Moscato) or a fruity white wine (e.g., Riesling, Vin Santo, Chardonnay).
  8. For a Chicken Caesar Salad wine pairing, you’ll find Chardonnay to be a good match with its light oaked notes.  If the chicken in the Caesar Salad wine pairing is chargrilled, you’ll want to go with a fuller-bodied wine.  Dry Rose and Oaked Sauvignon Blanc are good choices as well.

In the end, it is all a matter of personal preference and what wine is available. If you are unsure what wine with salad works, go with ice wine, and you will never go wrong. Some great ice wines that go with all types of salads include the Wagner Riesling, Jackson Triggs Vidal, Kiona Ice Wine, Wagner Vidal Blanc, and a 2016 Hahn Hill Vineyard Ice Wine Riesling.  Look to Pacific Rim & Company for answers to your wine pairing questions.  They are very knowledgeable about all types of wines.

Time Posted: Sep 30, 2021 at 6:42 AM Permalink to What is The Best Wine with Salad? Permalink
Pacific Rim
September 22, 2021 | Pacific Rim

What is The Best Wine to Pair with Steak?

If there is one iconic food that is usually served with wine, it has to be steak. The right wine will allow you to taste all the flavors of the steak and enhance the dining experience. However, for the steak to be enjoyed thoroughly, one must pair it with the right wine. What wine goes with steak? It depends on the cut of meat and how it is prepared. Here are some basic rules about steak and wine pairing.

grilled rib eye steak with red wine

  1. In general, when eating meat products, select a dry red wine. If you are consuming a steak, go with red wine. 
  2. If the steak is lean, it goes best with a light wine.
  3. If the steak has a lot of fat to it, you will want to pair it with a less robust, lighter wine to keep the richness of the flavor in check. If the wine is full-bodied, you will never get to experience the flavor of the steak. Or you may want to select a red wine with high acidity to amplify the spices and aroma of the steak.
  4. If the steak is mildly flavored and somewhat sweet, you should avoid a sweet wine and select one rich in tannins.
  5. If you like things simple and have cooked a steak with just salt and pepper, you are virtually free to select any light red or white wine. Steaks marinated with just salt and pepper tend to generate a variety of aromas, all of which can be accentuated by light wines.
  6. If you are consuming a heavily seasoned steak with aromatic spices and herbs, then go with a light, fruity, and sweet wine, as this will augment the taste of the meat.
  7. Steak sauces can make a difference in the best wine to pair with steak.  If the sauce is red and rich, it will need a Malbec or good red Bordeaux to accompany it.  If the steak has a sauce with peppercorns, choose the Rhône that is ripe or a Languedoc.  For lighter sauces, a Pinot Noir would be a good choice.

So Which Wines Should You Select?

  1. Cabernet Sauvignon is the most popular red wine globally. Even though it originated in France, it is produced in many other nations, including Washington, Australia, China, South Africa, and Chile. Cabernet is a very versatile wine, and it can be paired with many foods. It is the ideal wine for novices. The high acidity of the wine will slice through a fatty and spicy steak, generating a soft, tangy taste.
  2. Zinfandel is another excellent wine that is more sweet than acidic. However, do not choose Zinfandel if your steak has been marinated with sweet seasoning. It goes best with steaks with a spicy and exotic taste. The sweetness of the wine will balance the spice and make each bite delicious.
  3. Malbec is a medium-body red wine that is rich in tannins. It tends to have a fruity aftertaste and scent. Malbec is ideal for lean steaks, such as flank or sirloin. 
  4. Syrah (Shiraz) is a superb red wine that pairs best with ribeye steak, which tends to be heavier. Syrah is a robust wine that balances the richness of the fat and soothes the palate.
  5. Pinot Noir is a light to medium red wine with natural acidity and the scent of berries. It pairs well with lean steak that is cooked rare or medium-rare. The natural acidity will balance out any sweetness and bring out the juices in the steak with each bite.

What wine goes with steak?  Listed above are just some basic guidelines, and you are free to experiment and determine for yourself which you like best. There is no penalty for breaking the rules, and the more you mix and match, the more you will get to enjoy your food.  Discover what flavors you like best together, and if you have any questions, just ask a representative from Pacific Rim and Company. They are experts!

Time Posted: Sep 22, 2021 at 5:57 AM Permalink to What is The Best Wine to Pair with Steak? Permalink


Recent Posts