December 9, 2015
From the truly inventive to modern updates of tried and true classics (s’mores, anyone?) these ten over-the-top decadent desserts could make even the biggest sweet tooth’s swoon.
We’re taking a tour across the country to take in the most decadent desserts America has to offer.
1. Golden Opulence Sundae
Restaurant: Serendipity 3, New York City
Go big or go home, the Golden Opulence Sundae is listed in the 2007 Guinness World Records as the most expensive sundae in the world.
Coming in at a staggering $1,000, this over-the-top dessert is so luxurious that customers must order it two days in advance so that ingredients can be flown in from around the world.
Scoops of Tahitian vanilla ice cream, infused with Madagascan vanilla beans, are covered in edible gold leaf. The sundae is then drizzled with melted Amendei Porcelana chocolate and studded with Parisian candied fruit, marzipan cherries, chocolate truffles, and Grand Passion caviar.
The finishing touch is a gilded sugar flower that takes a whopping 7 hours to create. If that wasn’t enough, it comes in a $300 Baccarat Harcourt crystal goblet.
2. The Cronut®
Restaurant: Dominique Ansel Bakery, New York City
Dropping down to a far more realistic five bucks, no list of desserts would be complete without what Time magazine dubbed, “one of the best inventions of 2013," the Cronut®.
Dominique Ansel unveiled the Cronut® back in May of 2013, and since then, it’s gone on to spawn copycats across the globe. The croissant-doughnut hybrid is made with layers of sugar coated pastry dough, which is filled with cream, deep fried, and glazed.
Although Cronut® mania has dwindled since its inception, Dominique Ansel Bakery still sees a line winding down the block outside their SoHo outpost every morning.
3. Deep-Fried Bread Pudding
Restaurant: Crackers Casual Dining, Miami
Hunks of baked custardy bread are wholly satisfying on their own, but deep-frying adds a whole new crackly level to this decadent dessert. At Crackers Casual Dining in Miami, they take it one step further by topping it with a scoop of vanilla ice cream and a heaping spoonful of caramel.
4. Sweet Corn Funnel Cake
Restaurant: Longman and Eagle, Chicago
Variations of funnel cake have been around for centuries, but it wasn’t until 1879 when German immigrants dusted fried, yeasted dough with powdered sugar that funnel cake got its new name.
Longman and Eagle’s late summer spin on this fairground treat is a far cry from the funnel cake of yesteryear. Sweet corn-studded funnel cake gets accompanied with saffron-bourbon panna cotta, corn nut praline, vanilla and sweet corn ice cream, molasses pudding, and bourbon marshmallow.
5. Fried Milk
Restaurant: Uchiko, Austin
A spin around the Texas State Fair is a gentle reminder that in the South, you can deep-fry almost anything.
From butter and pizza to pop tarts, all bets are off when it comes to whipping out the fryer. Austin’s Uchiko elevates this practice to the next level with their all-star dessert, Fried Milk.
Served with a silky milk chocolate ganache, chocolate wafers, a smattering of cornflake crisps and ice milk sorbet, this just may be the best breakfast-meets-dessert mash up ever.
6. Foie Gras Candy Bar
Restaurant: Sage, Las Vegas
Regardless of your thoughts on the practice, for better or worse, foie gras has become synonymous with decadence. From foie-filled donuts to burgers, the controversial delicacy has made its way into nearly every dish imaginable.
At Sage in Las Vegas, the pricey foie gras candy bar layers salt and pepper peanut butter cream and foie under a milk chocolate shell. Bourbon caramel covered popcorn tops off this sweet-meets-savory dessert.
7. Boccone Dolce
Restaurant: Papa Haydn, Portland
Pavlova is gorgeous on its own, but Boccone Dolce takes meringue to the next level. This Italian showstopper, which translates to sweet bite, has tiers of meringue layered with whipped cream, seasonal fruit, and drizzled with semi-sweet dark chocolate.
8. Baked Hawaiian
Restaurant: Liholiho Yacht Club, San Francisco
Liholiho Yacht Club’s throwback to the 1950s classic Baked Alaska takes a swim to warmer waters. With a nod to the islands, the Baked Hawaiian surrounds caramelized pineapple ice cream on a vanilla shortbread crust with swirls of torched vanilla chiffon.
9. Salted Caramel Chocolate Cake
Restaurant: Republique, Los Angeles
Republique’s pastry counter could make even the most health conscious eater have a change of heart. In between flaky croissants and jam-filled bomboloni sits pastry chef Margarita Manzke’s sky-high chocolate cake. Made with dark Valrhona chocolate, this ultra-moist cake is coated with salted caramel and dressed with a thick layer of chocolate buttercream frosting.
10. S’mores Bar
Restaurant: Seersucker, San Diego
Gooey marshmallow and just-melted chocolate sandwiched between graham crackers – there’s no denying that this classic campfire treat is decadent in its own right.
At Seersucker, all the elements of a traditional s’mores are kept intact, but their spin on this dessert is something a little more grown up. A graham cracker cake layered with salted caramel ganache and honey-spiked chocolate mousse topped with smoked marshmallow and sprinkled with chocolate crumbs.
We wouldn’t recommend putting it over an open flame.