Food

Desserts That Rival the Main Menu

There’s this improbable track by the R&B artist Tinashe and the D.J. MAKJ referred to as “Save Room for Us,” and I hear it in my head each time I sit down at a restaurant that I do know has a dessert menu. It’s a topic I just won’t shut up about, as a result of when performed proper, dessert can elevate an already fantastic meal. With out it, you’re making all of it the best way to the top zone — solely to attain a subject purpose. (In nonsports parlance, it’s like a Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade with out Snoopy — it’s nonetheless nice, nevertheless it feels incomplete!)

For a lot of eating places, dessert is a matter of assets. In dire instances, pastry chef positions are often the primary to get reduce. And but, I discover that as a diner once I encounter an thrilling, wide-ranging dessert menu, I’m extra prone to spend a bit more cash to finish the evening with one thing candy. It’s an actual Catch-22.

As my colleague Becky Hughes identified final fall, the town’s quick however sensible Scorching Restaurant Summer season™ introduced with it a renewed curiosity in sweets. Listed below are six eating places (and one cafe) that perceive the significance of a powerful dessert lineup.

Each time I’m going to Sofreh in Prospect Heights, I at all times punctuate my meal with the baklava drizzled in citrus rose syrup and the Persian ice cream trio with saffron, rosewater and pistachio ice lotions as a result of, in my humble opinion, they style even higher collectively — assume kesar pista. (You may also pattern a handful of their desserts and breads on the months-old Sofreh Cafe in Bushwick.)

At Hawksmoor in the Flatiron district, the primary American outpost of the favored London steakhouse, I kind of felt it was my civic obligation to attempt the whole dessert menu from the pastry chef Carla Henriques. I’ll be dreaming of the Meyer lemon meringue dessert, with its ice cream and lemon curd insides, for a very long time to return.

If you may get a seat at Gage & Tollner in Downtown Brooklyn, you’ll watch half a dozen baked alaskas fly by your desk, one in every of many dessert choices, not counting the celebration truffles you may order forward of time. (Scorching tip: Should you’re searching for a present, ask for the off-the-menu flaming baba au rhum, or attempt the brand-new amaretto coffee sundae.)

Even one or two particular dessert choices can do the trick. The tasting menu at Jua in Flatiron ends with the platonic supreme of a hotteok, a kind of Korean pancake, which the chef Hoyoung Kim calls “Korean soul meals.” It alone is well worth the $130 worth of admission, should you ask me.

On the Williamsburg outpost of the sushi restaurant Nami Nori, which makes a speciality of temaki hand rolls, one in every of two desserts on the menu is a plate of “mochurros.” They’re so easy but so sensible: dough constituted of glutinous rice flour — the bottom of mochi — piped and deep fried like a churro, and served with a shallow bowl of tangy lemon curd. And naturally there’s the town’s hottest fruit platter on the Cantonese-influenced Bonnie’s, additionally in Williamsburg, with star fruit, witch finger grapes, dragon fruit, lychee, orange slices and mango. It’s as considerate because the immigrant dad and mom who impressed it. (Pete Wells advises attending to the door the second it opens if you’d like a seat.)

I can’t say whether or not the dessert menu is again or not, however I’m certain that it nonetheless issues to those that, like myself, contemplate themselves eating completists.


Actual fast, I’d prefer to say thanks for all the properly needs that appeared within the The place to Eat inbox final week. I’ve been studying by way of the various queries you could have about eating round New York Metropolis and can attempt my finest to reply them in future newsletters and, considerably hardly ever, in direct emails. I’m at [email protected] for questions, requests and well mannered solutions.

  • Tune in on April 8 for the The place to Eat digital occasion that includes an interview with the comic and TV host Desus Good about how the place he likes to eat, essentially the most underrated meals in New York and extra.

  • Pete Wells reviewed Uncle Lou, a brand new restaurant in Manhattan’s Chinatown with cross-generational enchantment that, by specializing in traditional Cantonese dishes, is “a type of love letter to its neighborhood.”

  • Openings and pop-ups: France meets Japan on the new TriBeCa restaurant L’Abeille (assume miso-glazed pigeon grilled over binchotan charcoal); Manero’s, a red-sauce offshoot of Manero’s Pizza, opens tomorrow in Little Italy; the chef Adrienne Cheatham will take over the kitchen at Harlem’s Red Rooster on Sunday and April 10 in celebration of her new e book, “Sunday Finest.”

  • Rax Will experiences on the push to make use of gender-neutral language and etiquette when addressing nonbinary and transgender clients, and the efforts to create safer areas for the gender-expansive group within the restaurant business.

  • The pandemic noticed the shuttering of a handful of culinary faculties. Priya Krishna experiences on group faculties which are providing a less expensive various to dearer applications.

  • Should you like a rousing musical efficiency together with your mimosa-fueled brunch, these six eating places in Manhattan and the Hudson Valley are right here to assist.

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