Thursday, October 13, 2016 | 9:55 pm
As if we needed another reason to indulge in sweets – Friday is National Dessert Day. Celebrate this holiday with ice cream, cake, cookies, brownies or all of the above. Here are a few of our favorite places in Pasadena to get your sugar fix.
This Venezuelan chocolate cafe brims with chocolate creations, strong coffee and inventive arepas. Indulge in Nutella while getting your morning caffeine fix with Amara’s Nutella Latte. This hot and sweet drink comes with the option of added spice and a full body of chocolatey goodness. If coffee isn’t your beverage of choice then opt for a Nutella Hot Chocolate, you can’t go wrong with this steaming mug of comfort.
Amara Cafe is located at 55 South Raymond Avenue, Pasadena. Call (626) 710 – 8831 or visit www.amarachocolate.com for more details.
Waffles de Liege
These crisp Belgian-style waffles that are a dessert-worthy treat that only benefits from the addition of Nutella, ice cream and a healthy dollop of whipped cream. Thier waffles are made with yeasted dough rather than batter, which gives them a heartier texture. Each waffle is cooked at high temperatures to caramelize the pearl sugar imported from Belgium.
Waffles de Liege is located at 21 East Holly Street, Pasadena. Call (626) 793-7726 or visit www.wafflesdeliege.com.
Carmela Ice Cream
Jessica Mortarotti, the co-founder of Carmela Ice Cream, is one of the leaders of the artisan revolution. She has been crafting frozen treats with produce directly from the farmer’s market for almost ten years.
“[At] one of our first farmer’s markets, one of the farmers came up to me and [asked], ‘Will you taste my cucumbers and try to make a cucumber sorbet? I think it sounds really good,’” Mortarotti said. The end result? You guessed it: Cucumber sorbet. Most of Carmela’s ice creams are seasonal so you know that what you’re eating is at the peak of freshness.
Mortarotti credits this to the fresh ingredients and a French custard style ice cream base she developed. This base uses uses milk and egg yolks, “it just gives you a little bit more of a flavorful creamy texture, [and a] more stable final product,” she said.
Stop by for flavors like Salted Caramel and Coffee made with beans from Intelligensia and don’t forget to try their homemade waffle cones and waffle ice cream dishes.
Carmela Ice Cream is located at 2495 E Washington Blvd, Pasadena, CA 91104. Call 626.797.1405 or visit http://www.carmelaicecream.com/ for more details.
Del Frisco’s Grille
Bread pudding might not be the hippest dessert you think of but this Nutella Bread Pudding will have you singing a different tune. Made with challah bread steeped in Nutella and chocolate, this bread pudding redefines dessert. The crispy outside melts into a gooey center and is complemented by a cascade of coffee ice cream. Dare you not to lick the spoon.
Del Frisco’s Grille is located at 55 S Lake Ave Ste 150, Pasadena, Call (626) 765-9913 or visit www.delfriscosgrille.com.
Ice cream is just one of those things that makes you feel good – whether you like it in a cup or cone, now there’s a place to satisfy all your frozen dessert needs.
Bengee’s Ice Cream Crafters is an all-inclusive ice cream parlor that has tasty vegan options, fun toppings like Oreo crumbles and even a creamy bun – or cronut option.
“Ice cream makes me happy so I want others to enjoy it too,” said the owner, Foulay Saelor. His favorite treat is horchata ice cream in a creamy bun with Cinnamon Toast Crunch.
Although he is not vegan himself, Saelor wanted to make an all-inclusive ice cream experience and encourages guests to come in and sample all the flavors.
Bengee’s Ice Cream Crafters is located at 901 E Del Mar Boulevard.
POP Champagne Bar
Pop over and see what’s cooking – everything goes well with a glass of bubbly.
Pop on over to see what’s cooking. POP Champagne Bar is located at 33 East Union Street, Pasadena. Call (626) 795-1295 and visit their website for the most up-to-date souffle calendar www.popchampagnebar.com.
Lark Cake Shop
Lark Cake Shop is probably the cutest bakery you may not have heard of yet. This cupcakery and cake shop is off the well-worn main retail district paths in Pasadena but well worth the trip up the hill. Lark started in Silverlake nine years ago and opened their Pasadena location in February, 2015.
Don’t expect to find the latest dessert craze but rather, a reliably satisfying dessert. Their known for moist carrot cake, seasonal pumpkin spice cake and light Berry Shortbread cupcakes. The Old Fashioned Ice Box cake or cupcake is a stellar option. It features seven layers of thin chocolate wafers cushioned by whipped cream and topped with a sprinkling of crushed cookies. This is the perfect summer dessert to enjoy straight from the refrigerator.
At Lark, each pastry is handmade from ingredients you would use in your own kitchen – whole eggs, milk, flour and sugar. Although their focus is on classic desserts, Lark does offer two vegan cupcakes – Vegan Chocolate Orange and Vegan Boston Banana.
Since their baked goods are free of preservatives and contain less sugar than commercial products, the cupcakes require refrigeration. With the exception of the Old Fashioned Ice Box cake, Hensley recommends letting them come to room temperature an hour before eating to give the flavors time to meld.
Lark Cake Shop is located at 1355 N. Hill Avenue Pasadena. For more information, call (626) 798-1031 or visit www.larkcakeshop.com.
Afters Ice Cream
Is it an ice cream sandwich or a doughnut sundae? This awe-inspiring dessert, called a creamy Bun, includes a scoop of ice cream, a topping – try the cereal for a nice crunch – and comes pressed in a hot doughnut. The crunchy toppings like Afters Flakes and Cinnamon Cereal.
Although many of their flavors seem to be influenced by Asian culture – like Jasmine Milk Tea Ice Cream and Mochi toppings – Afters Ice Cream is a flavor experience all its own. A Milky Bun’s cold ice cream compliments the soft, pillowy doughnut and cereal toppings lend an unexpected crunch.
Afters Ice Cream is located at 1265 East Green Street. Visit www.aftersicecream.com for more details.