Fresh fruit is always a winner. I love anything in season when it’s flavor is at it’s peak. Other than that, any kind of fruit works great; strawberries, raspberries, blueberries and pineapple are a few of my favorites.
Red Wine!! Any full-bodied red will do. Favorites are so subjective. Two Washington Syrahs that work are “Haystack Needle” or “Lick my Lips”. Another fun pairing is an Italian Negroamaro by Palama. It has fabulous notes of spice like cassis and pepper, also dark cherry and plum. Amazing with chocolate!!
Bread!! Think… pain au chocolat… Yum!! The simple version is to let the fudge sit at room temperature and then spread inside a fresh croissant. Delish! The blow-your-dinner-guests-away version is to spread truffle cream onto a slice of brioche or challah. Top with slices of fudge. Add another slice of bread and grill… omg!!
Aged Balsamic Vinegar… yes!! The two I tried were a 15-year old by Campari and a 12-year old by Acetaia called, “Cherry Gold”. It was like a chocolate covered cherry that just hit the lottery, creamy chocolate with deep cherry flavor, an unbelievable pairing and oh, so chic!!
Tawny Port. This has to be one of my favorites. A Ruby Port will work too if you prefer something sweeter. I prefer the deeper, caramel tones in a tawny.
As with any pairing, I suggest the European method… Take a bite of fudge and let it warm on your tongue. Just as you taste it on the roof of your mouth take a bite (or drink) of whatever you are pairing. Let the two flavors blend together on your tongue. Swallow. Swoon. Repeat.
One final note… at a 4th of July party last year, one of my friends made s’mores using Fat Cat Fudge as the chocolate. I’m just saying!!!