There’s little more comforting than a massive slice of your favourite cake.
Except, perhaps, a massive slice of your favourite cake with a glass of wine specially chosen to match.
As award-winning wine journalist Alice Feiring demonstrates with her 12 expert tips, wine pairing is definitely not just for the savoury. Did you know, for instance, that a sparkling white dessert wine is an excellent partner to coconut cake? Or that a dry amber wine is perfect for a chocolate orange cake?
The list, from amara.com, takes in bubbly whites, deep reds and even sneaks in a couple of posh ciders.
So if the week is dragging its heels and you’re in search of a pick-me-up, browse our gallery below for the best wine styles to match with different cakes (plus shopping recommendations if you get stuck) and set yourself up with our food-booze pairings.
Bag yourself a bake and a bottle, hole up indoors and forget about the rest of the world. We won’t tell anyone...
“Aromatic wine can stand up to dense cheesecakes without being dense itself”
Try: Domaine Piere Frick Gerwuztraminer Steinert, Grand Cru, £17.99
Flourless Chocolate Cake
Wine: Oxidised, fortified
“Fortified wines that have been exposed to hear and air develop a complex, muted, caramel-like saltiness, which echoes the flourless chocolate cake’s savoury ground nuts.”
Try: Barbeito Boal Reserva Madeira, £13.99
Wine: Sparkling white dessert
“The gentle sweetness of a sparkling dessert wine pairs up with the delicate not-so-sweet coconut cake.”
Try: Cantina Bera Moscato d’Asti, £15
Wine: Ice cider
“Carrot cake has strong sweet and creamy elements. A good iced cider can slight right through it.”
Try: Somerset Cider Brandy Ice Cider, £12.65
Wine: Off-dry sparkling
“Off-dry sparkling wines with a hint of apple matched with an apple cake make for a gorgeous apple-y delight.”
Try: Domaine Huet Demi-Sec, £32.80
Pineapple Upside-Down Cake
Wine: Sweet white
“The tropical flavour from the grape, Petit Manseng, especially from the Jurancon, marries the syrupy fruit. Its extreme acidity keeps the match fresh.”
Try: Camin Larredya Au Capceu Jurancon Moelleux, £25.75
Wine: Pear cider
“Pears and cardamom so often show up in recipes as they accent each other so well. Try sipping some delicious pear along with a cardamom cake.”
Try: Eric Bordelet Poire Granit, £17.50
Olive Oil Cake
Wine: Sparkling white
“The aromatic lightness of a sparkling wine matches the dense olive oil without being overpowering.”
Try: Arndorfer Riesling Strasser Weinberg, £19.98
Chocolate Orange Cake
Wine: Dry amber (also known as ‘orange wine’)
“The juicy, slightly tannic wine supports the strong cake flavours without undoing the power of the chocolate orange.”
Try: Pheasant’s Tears Rkatsitelli, £17
Lemon Poppy Cake
Wine: Bitter aperitif
“The bitter from an aperitif such as vermouth accents the almost fruity snap of the poppy seed.”
Try: Mauro Vergano Chinato Americano, £33
Wine: Sparkling rosé
“From Gamay and Poulsard grapes, the berry fruitiness of this wine echoes the fragrant strawberries in the cake. The match is wonderfully light-hearted and fun.”
Try: Domaine Renardat-Fâche Bugey Cerdon, £23
Wine: Deep red
“Deep red wines are a great match to the sharp cheese in this cake, because they have this ability to synergise the saltiness into sweet accents.”
Try: Domaine Léon Barral Jadis Faugères, £25