If the heart of a chef is found in his entre, then chef Daniel Costa’s chocolate torta must be where he keeps his soul. It’s either that, or it’s where he hides his inner child.
The flourless dessert is rich in semi-sweet chocolate, practically coating the mouth with each bite. It is sweet and salty, thanks in no small part to the candied hazelnuts that lay crumbled over its exterior. The hazelnuts are roasted and sweetened, but are tamed with a delicate touch of salt, creating a perfectly balanced dessert experience.
If one wanted to be mature about it, we would say it is simply a mouthwatering, decadent experience. But if we want to be honest with ourselves, we would admit that it’s a time machine that catapults us back to the childhood wonder of our first raid on an open Nutella jar.
In either case, you’ll likely can’t help but devour – and smile. –Cory Haller
Sharing the beignets at The Marc is an existential dining experience. That’s because the spheres of fried dough, made fresh to order, are so light and puffy inside, they might come as close as you can get to dining on a cloud.
The beignets come with two dips; one is a dense salted caramel, while the other is a light crme anglaise that’s combined with stout beer. Dip your beignet in the cream and make sure to savour the bite as long as you can; you will get deep, smoky notes from the beer after the initial sweet rush. –Steven Sandor
Chef Rosario Caputo is going to cause a lot of date-night strife, because if a couple orders the zeppole to share, they’ll get seven fluffy balls of dough, kissed with lemon zest and powdered sugar. The hints of limoncello in the dough makes the dessert fragrant, but it’s not tart or too sweet. With coffee or amaretto – or better yet, both – they are simply a perfect bow on a great meal.
But the issue is that there is seven of them on the plate. Not six. Not eight. Seven. So, after each person has eaten three, there will be a staredown over who gets No. 7. Should you save the relationship? Or should you just grab the last piece? –S.S.