The online home of Mark “The Cork Head” Stuart, Certified Wine Professional, speaker/educator, judge, and columnist.

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December 2017
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The most memorable words I ever heard about the legion of women who hope (or expect!) to be wowed by their significant other on Valentine’s Day innocently came from a 1990s radio advertisement when the actor deadpanned, “It’s their Super Bowl.”

Admittedly, I’m a guy’s guy and therefore the ultimate “Hallmark Holiday” generally leaves me with barely half a smile. What is most important is that my wife knows she is special – not only Valentine’s Day, but every day. And, since I’m not yet leader of the free world, I know I must succumb to societal rules now and then, and this Feb. 14 will be no different.

Start with chocolate. Not only have I found the the best darn chocolate I’ve ever tasted, but it also has some major league cool factor too. The Choclatique Gold Leaf Dom Perignon Champagne Truffle. Its a mouthfull to say and enjoy!

There is nothing more decadent and indulgent than a luscious, chocolate Champagne truffle from Choclatique. The wonderfully light and creamy ganache filling is made with Dom Perignon Champagne enclosed in a rich, award-winning, Private Reserve Dark Chocolate (64% cacao) each kissed with a 24-karat gold leaf! The chocolatier even went so far as to have Ferrari’s chief designer created the mold, and the little gems are even shipped in a mini-cooler so as to insure the perfect temperature throughout delivery.

Extravagant yes, but when you taste it you’ll understand why I carry this in my “World’s Best” wine store. You just gotta try them to believe it.

Move on to the vino. I’ve also carefully selected an historically significant sparkling wine from Sonoma that pairs perfectly with the truffles, and a superb-yet-affordable ruby style Port that quite frankly may be one of the great chocolate pairings on earth. Whatever you choose you’ll be sure to exceed any expectations.

Finally, still has a few bottles left of the 2009 Wine Enthusiast #1 Wine of the Year, the 2006 Cambria Julia’s Vineyard Pinot Noir. Grab them before they are gone.

Enjoy your Valentine’s Day, and every day in between. Life is short. Rejoice in it!

Mark the Cork Head

 Cambria Julia's Vineyard Pinot Noir 2006 Cambria Julia’s Vineyard Pinot Noir 

Price: $17.79

(save $3.21) 15%


Wine Enthusiast #1 Wine of 2009.  Enough Said.  The 2007 vintage has already reached store shelves, meaning this wine is nearly sold out.  This wine will soon be gone forever.  Enjoy now!
 Dom Perignon Champagne Truffles

Choclatique was just named “The Most Gifted Chocolatier/Chocolate Maker” of 2009.

The Bubbly Collection peek-a-boo cork mold was designed by Ferrari’s chief designer, with the chocolate itself infused with Dom Perignon, and topped off with 24 carat gold.

Extravagant yes, but when you taste it you’ll understand why this is in the “World’s Best” wine store.  Quite frankly, there is nothing better.      



Choclatique30piecebubblyindulgencePrice: $35.00

 Iron Horse Russian CuveeIron Horse Russian Cuvee 2002
Price:  $21.89
(Save $6.10) 22%
The Russian Cuvee commemorates the style of sparkling wine this winery made for the historic Reagan-Gorbachev Summit Meetings, which ended the Cold War. Right on the edge of Brut level dry and hits a perfect balance point of sweetness, acidity, and fruit. The higher dosage doesn’t come across as sweet, per se, but shows the richer and more floral side making it a perfect chocolate partner. 


 Graham's Six Grapes ReserveGraham’s Six Grapes Reserve Port (half-bottle) 
Price: $13.29  (Wine and Spirits 91 pts.)
Six Grapes has a seductive, rich aroma of ripe plums, cherries and dark chocolate. On the palate it’s complex, with an excellent structure and a long, lingering finish.  It is a very full-bodied, luscious wine drawn from the same vineyards as Graham’s Vintage Ports and makes one of the great chocolate partners anywhere. 
This half-bottle is just the perfect size two people can enjoy with some sweet treats.


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  1. […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Wine Lovernews and bestwine, Mark Stuart. Mark Stuart said: February means Super Bowl and Valentines Day. […]

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