Wine + Chocolate + Other Fave European Finds at Aldi

img_3827True. I don’t find that many French things at Aldi, but I very find some high-quality foods from neighboring European countries. Here are a few of my favorite finds at the moment.

But first, a caveat: If you shop at Aldi, you know that while there are a lot of things to love, there’s one thing that can drive you crazy: Something you adore might not be there the next time you go. It’s a continually rotating stock. (Note to Aldi: Please bring back the Wild Mushroom-Crème Fraîche Flatbread!)

So, when I tell you about my fave finds at the moment, just know that they might not be there next week. Better take advantage now. Here’s what I found and loved (starting with my fave):

 

I love this Prosecco, especially for the price. It's $8.99 in my neck of the woods.

I love this Prosecco, especially for the price. It’s $8.99 in my neck of the woods.

• Grandi Mori Valdobbiadene Prosecco Superiore ($8.99). That’s an amazing price, people, for this good of a sparkling wine. It’s crisp and refreshing, but with a nice fruitiness that makes it go down great as an apéritif. Here’s what we do at my house: On Friday night, we toast the weekend by making Aperol Spritzes with half the bottle. We recork it, and on Saturday nights, we make Kir Royals from the second half of the bottle (yes—the fizz lasts at least 24 hours). Living large at $8.99 a bottle.

• Choceur Dark Chocolate Bar with Almonds ($1.69): I love the intense flavor of dark chocolate, but I also adore the creaminess of milk chocolate. This Austrian bar has it all. I’ve never, ever had dark chocolate that tastes this smooth and creamy–yet still retains that bitter appeal of dark chocolate.

• Benton Shortbread Fingers ($1.99): From Australia, these are about half the price of Walker’s

Yes, they're an off-brand, but yes, they're just as good as the cookies you spend twice as much for.

Yes, they’re an off-brand, but yes, they’re just as good as the cookies you spend twice as much for.

Shortbread fingers, and honestly, you won’t be able to tell the difference. Another great tea-time treat.

• Specially Selected Sea Salt Caramels ($2.99): The story is that Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis always indulged in one bite of dessert. It was enough to satisfy her, and it helped her stay trim. These indulgent caramels are the way that I avoid over-indulging at dessert. Seriously—one of these buttery-creamy caramels, robed in chocolate and sprinkled with sea salt—do it for me every single time.

Yup. Just like Lu's Petite Ecoliers, sans the ecolier.

Yup. Just like Lu’s Petite Ecoliers, sans the écolier (that is, instead of the schoolboy design in the chocolate, they’ve stamped German buildings).

• Specially Selected Dark Chocolate Butter Cookies ($1.99): You’ve seen “Petit Ecoliers”—those lovely chocolate-topped French butter cookies, right? These German-made knock-offs are the same thing, only half the price.

• Specially Selected Aged Reserve White Cheddar ($2.49): Ooops—actually, this isn’t from Europe, but it’s such a good value, I want to mention it anyway! When you need a flavorful cheese for everyday uses—topping chili, folding into casseroles, etc.—this inexpensive white cheddar does the trick. And it melts beautifully!

I’d love to hear about your fave finds at Aldi at the moment!

Did you miss these recent posts?

My personal pics for the best gifts for the French food lover (nope, it’s not to early to start shopping!).
A great California take on a fabulous Basque spice. (Every kitchen needs this spice!)
Mmmmm! Beef recipes for the braiser! The best!

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6 comments to Wine + Chocolate + Other Fave European Finds at Aldi

  • Olivia

    hey i love aldis and have shopped there first growing up and now as an adult it’s where i purchase the bulk of my groceries etc.

    i was wondering what wines you’d consider purchasing from there to cook with?

    • Wini

      Hi Olivia! I’ve found a good Pinot Grigio that’s around $7 a bottle that I use for white wine. It’s called San Zenone (from Venezia).

      Sadly, I have not bought any red wines that I’ve liked enough to buy twice. Aldi has good values, but they’re not for me—I’m very picky about red wine as it can easily give me headaches the next day if I’m not careful.

      • Olivia

        okay could you tell me where you purchase your wines in the US to cook with…i’m new with all the cooking with wine etc. and just need to know where to start.

        • Wini

          Hello again, Olivia. I purchase my wines pretty much wherever I shop: Whole Foods, Trader Joe’s, Aldi, local supermarkets, or local wine shops.

          When it comes to wine to cook with, honestly, don’t sweat it. Any dry white wine will do. Sauvingon blanc and Pinot Grigio are top in my book, though Chardonnay works as well. You don’t need to spend more than $10 a bottle on wine that you cook with. (Yes, there are “experts” out there that say “never cook with a wine that you wouldn’t drink,” but I tend to go a bit lower on cooking wine. I don’t use garbage (that is, I probably wouldn’t spend less than $7 for a bottle), but I don’t ever use my best, top-shelf wine to cook with either, as its nuances get lost when blended with other ingredients.

          As for reds, Cabernet, Merlot, Pinot Noir, Syrah, red blends. Truly–just about anything will work. Again, don’t use plonk, but don’t use your best reds, either. Save the best for drinking at the table.

          Hope this helps!

  • Cecilia

    Just saw an even better Prosecco at Aldi: La Marca Prosecco. It was $11.99 a blottle. Usually I see it for $17 or so. Great value. But then, I haven’t tried the one you recommend, so I can’t compare.

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