Oh, it’s  hot alright. The city is steaming with heat and humidity, tourists are squeezing their way through the asphalt jungle, everybody is sweating. Gotta love New York. Water is being sold by the cases, iced coffee and and other frozen treats are in high demand. Ice cream trucks are making a killing. While I appreciate a good old soft serve,  as a spoiled New Yorker I yearn for something special. And I found it.

Chikalicious

China Tillman is a former pastry chef for the famous Gramercy Tavern in NYC, who opened her dessert bar Chikalicious. Located in the East Village, this tiny sweet spot serves more than ice cream. This is a whole experience. The place is set up like a New York upscale bar, and the menu is a la carte or pre fixe, some with wine pairings if so desired. My girlfriends and I were lucky enough to be seated at the bar, and benefited from the whole Chikalicious experience.

We started with an amuse bouche, a little frozen vanilla treat with raspberries. Next were our “main courses” if you will, consisting of Yellow Watermelon Sorbet with Blueberries on Coconut Cream and Blueberry Puree. Not only was it delicious, but it was so pretty! My friend Doreen had a Fromage Blanc Island “Cheese Cake”, which was perfectly white, perfectly round, and perfectly yummy. I stole a bite from her, and I can say that I never tasted anything like it. Following was a plate of small assorted cookies, and we were all in awe of the experience.

Across the street from this lively dessert bar is their sister shop, Chikalicioius Ice Cream and Dessert Club. We returned later that night to have some of their famous soft serve. It was ice cream overkill that night, and I loved every minute of it! My daughter chose their S’mores cone with vanilla ice cream, graham crackers, brûléed marshmallows, and chocolate sauce. Lord have mercy, what a decadent treat! I went for the Nutty Professor with vanilla ice cream, brown sugar pecan, roasted pecans and Nutella sauce. These cones are amazing treats, ice cream that is truly a cut above.

 

For more info click here

Dominique Ansel

Dominique Ansel is another high level pastry chef that ventured out on his own. A born French man, he has worked in acclaimed restaurants all over the world, including right there in New York at Daniel, one of Daniel Boloud’s famous restaurants, where he was part of the team the was awarded three Michelin Stars.

I recently visited his location on Spring Street where he serves up the popular DKA ice cream sandwich. DKA stands for Dominique’s Kouign Amann, which is a flaky croissant-like treat with a caramelized crunchy crusts. It is cut in half and gets a heaping serving of ice cream, and off you into sugar heaven. I had salted caramel, and good thing I did,it was outstanding. Of course I wasn’t going to leave without scoring some of the beautiful desserts (a Chocolate Caramel Mousse Cake and Marcel The Monkey), which were, needless to say, incredible.

His other location, Dominique Ansel Kitchen on 7th Avenue South, has even more amazing ice cream related goodness, served out of a soft serve window. His signature flavor there is Burrata Soft Serve, and most of the orders are made to order. Dominique Ansel serves more than ice cream, he serves up frozen creativity.

For more info click here 

Grom

Grom is a chain gelaterie that supplies icy goodness all over the world. It was founded by gentlemen named Frederico Grom and Guido Marinetti, and their goal is to bestow upon us original gelato without food coloring or preservatives (you won me over right there). Most of their ingredients are imported from Italy, and that makes such a difference in matters of authenticity. Grom has several locations in New York City, and I visited the one right by Columbus Circle on a hot early afternoon, just to find out that every flavor can be turned into a milkshake. I ended up with a lemon milk shake, and excuse me, who does that? It was of course ridiculously good. I love this place.

For more info click here

I’m incredibly grateful for people with passion and drive and outstanding talent, who have decided to shine right here in New York City, therefore making our lives a little bit more delicious.

Until next time!