Over the years, there have been plenty of Halloween candy and wine pairing guides. But this one is different. This one is specific and this one doesn’t require you to run out and get a bottle of wine from the liquor store. After browsing this guide, you’ll be able to find your dream wine and candy pairings at your local grocery store. Because this is a guide to canned wine and Halloween candy pairings. Not only is canned wine easier to snag from the supermarket, but it’s also safer and easier to take with you while you make the trick-or-treat rounds (not that we’re suggesting you should drink in public, but if you are going to drink in public, do it with an aluminum can).
What are our bonafides, you may ask? Well, all of these wines were featured in our ranking of the best canned wine, so they have been tasted and approved for your consumption. And I passed the intro level of a sommelier course (I have a pin to prove it), so consider me a pairing pro. I also really like Halloween candy.
Here are seven delightful wine and candy pairings to make Halloween extra fun this year.
Tootsie Pops are available year-round but, let’s be real, you only actually eat them over Halloween. While they come in an array of flavors (the best are blue and orange, of course) all of them (aside from the chocolate) have the same, vibrant, fruity tang. That zip and zing pairs well with the berry-rich fruitiness of this rosé. And, since rosé is just so food-friendly, you can keep on drinking it even when you get to the Tootsie Roll center.
Candy corn has its detractors, but it also has a passionate fan base that can’t imagine spooky season without handfuls of waxy, sugary teeth, aka candy corn. Chardonnay is similar. Some folks can’t handle the oaky, buttery flavors of a California-style Chard. But others can’t get enough. If you find yourself in both appreciation groups, lucky you. Because Chardonnay and candy corn are a great pairing. The lemony acidity in Chardonnay cuts the sweetness of the candy corn, while the buttery sugariness of the candy corn complements the vanilla notes in the wine.
Sparkling wine and Skittles? You bet. These little cans are filled with Champagne-style sparkling wine that’s toasty and bright—perfect for cleansing your palate after handfuls of fruity, chewy candies. Plus, these cans are begging to be taken for a walk. They come with straws, for goodness sake.
Personally, I like both my Twix and my Pinot Noir chilled. So, pop both in the fridge for a half hour or so before enjoying this pairing. The Pinot is packed with rich cherry flavors that are just right for the thin chocolate coating on a Twix, and won’t overwhelm the delicate cookie. And the caramel in a Twix is just sweet enough to complement this Pinot’s minerality.
Pinot Gris and Pinot Grigio are the same grape, so don’t be intimidated. You’ve had something like this white wine before. It’s dry. It’s limey. It’s crisp. It’s great in between bites of fruity, chewy Starburst. Personally, I think the lemon Starburst will pair best with this Pinot Gris. But since you’re eating Starburst by the two-pack (because Halloween) it’s hard to engineer that exact experience. You’ll be just fine whatever you end up with.
Smarties are another one of those candies that I’m sure are available in June, but I’m only eating them in late October. The tubes of sour, chalky tablets are great palate cleansers between handfuls of chocolate—just like this sparkling rosé. It’s very, very dry, which makes it great with food—and candy.
While this is still an acceptable on-the-go pairing, it’s also so good you should enjoy it in private. I imagine myself wrapped up in a Frasier-style dressing gown with slippers by a roaring fire, sipping this deep, dark red blend and nibbling on a chocolate-peanut butter pumpkin. That said, feel free to do both! Start with a chilled can of House Red Blend for a stroll around the neighborhood, then finish it off at home and enjoy how the change in temperature has evolved the flavors.