Jim Lambert was a businessman traveling through Australia for work back in the 1990s when he discovered the beautiful, rolling hills in the Barossa valley.
It was then and there that he decided where his journey in life would take him next, as he went on to purchase a winery with the intention of making world-class examples of single-vineyard wines.
Lambert Estate the Chocolatier Review
This is a pretty unique wine for the estate. The vast majority of their wines are all single-vineyard or single-region bottlings, showcasing a specific sense of place.
This bottle, however, has juice sourced from all over the sizable winemaking region that is Southern Australia.
The bottle is also unique in that it is non-vintage. This means that the wine does not come from a single year or harvest but is a blend of younger and older wines, just like the Ports from which it takes inspiration.
While bonafide Port wine is made in the Duoro valley region of Portugal, much like Champagne in France, this is a Tawny Port styled wine, which allows the winemaking team to use less traditional techniques when producing this wine.
That’s why they were able to marry the richness of a Port with the decadence of chocolate!
Lambert Estate the Chocolatier Summary
- Brand: Lambert Estate
- Country: Australia
- Region: Southern Australia
- Wine Type: Fortified Dessert Wine
- Varietals: Undisclosed blend
- ABV: 17%
The wine looks much like any other Tawny Port you may have seen. A reddish, purpley brown color in the glass, with big, dense legs.
As you swirl this wine in the glass, the legs appear readily and fall heavily.
This bottle is incredibly aromatic. The first thing you get is absolute tons of milk chocolate, followed by a bit of roasted nuts, rich caramel, and a bit of salinity which was pleasantly unexpected.
Thanks to the high level of alcohol present, you can practically smell this wine for miles.
What it says on the bottle is what you get. Lots of intense chocolate, caramel sauce, dried figs, and toasty nuts make up the flavors of this bottle, and those flavors are pretty in-your-face.
The wine is remarkably drinkable and has a much lighter body on the palate than I would have expected.
This makes for a pleasant, easy option for a nightcap or for a casual sipper.
What Does Lambert Estate the Chocolatier Pair With?
I once served this wine poured over house-made vanilla ice cream, and the results were absolutely decadent.
It is not as thick as chocolate syrup or anything quite like that, so be prepared for a bit of a different texture, but I promise you will not regret trying it!
The other clear route here is to go with chocolate! Given the richness of the wine itself, I would stick to darker chocolates to help keep you out of the super saccharine territory.
That said, the flavors of this wine will do well with pretty much any chocolatey, caramelly, or salty desserts.
Heck, I’m personally tempted to try my hand at seeing what I can do with this wine in a cocktail or two!
What Wines Are Similar to Lambert Estate the Chocolatier?
Honestly, I cannot say that I have tried a whole host of Port alternatives that were infused with different flavors. T
hat said, I think that people who enjoy this wine will thoroughly enjoy trying other Port and Port-style wines.
A personal favorite of mine is Macchia, which is a Port-style wine produced in Amador County in California from Zinfandel grapes. It tastes a lot like a dark chocolate bar stuffed with raspberry jam!
You could also try other fortified or powerful dessert wines. Sauternes, Commandaria, and Constantia all come to mind for wines in this kind of vein.
This is a fun, unique, and tasty wine! It definitely isn’t for everyone, as it is pretty sweet, but fans of flavored wines and dark chocolate are sure to find something to love here!