You Should Start Topping Your Ice Cream With Red Wine. Here's How

Ice cream is amazing all on its own, but it can be even better with the right toppings. While most people prefer to stick with tried and true classics like the perennial favorite hot fudge or sprinkles, there are always culinary innovators willing to try more unusual toppings including espresso, chili peppers, balsamic vinegar, bacon, sea salt, and even olive oil. Oh, and let's not forget Baskin-Robbins' soon-to-be-notorious Sour Berry Slime. (On second thought, let's absolutely forget it, and hope Baskin-Robbins follows suit.)

To add to your list of ice cream toppings to consider, we'd like to suggest one more candidate: red wine. Sure, liqueurs have long been paired with ice cream in parfaits and boozy drinks like the grasshopper and pink squirrel, and beer floats have even been a thing in recent years — but wine and ice cream has yet to catch on. At least, not outside of New England, where spumoni ice cream has long been served with claret sauce (a thickened dessert wine sauce, according to Lately, however, the idea of incorporating red wine into a sweet, creamy, frozen dessert has been gaining traction, and for good reason.

Red wine works equally well with chocolate and vanilla ice cream

Food52 reminds us that red wine and chocolate make for a most delightful pairing, and they suggest that one of the nicest ways to enjoy this delicious dessert mashup is with a red wine-hot fudge sauce that you can make at home. Simply swap out half the cream in your favorite fudge sauce recipe with red wine and voila! Not the DIY type? That's ok, you can always doctor up a store-bought sauce by stirring in a few spoonfuls of wine, too.

Delish prefers the boozy milkshake approach, blending a cup of red wine with a box (or a quart and a half) of vanilla ice cream. Their recipe then amps up the alcohol content by spiking the milkshake with a half-cup of vodka — but a vodka-free version is fine too and can highlight the delicious red wine/vanilla flavor pairing. 

For a somewhat lighter, yet even tastier, dessert drink, Delish also offers a recipe for a red wine float. To make one of these, scoop half a cup of chocolate or chocolate raspberry ice cream into a glass, pour in 3 ounces of red wine, then fill the glass with either plain or raspberry-flavored seltzer.