Desserts: Savor This!
Eight top chefs, bakers, and innovators bring spicy, nutty, fruity, herbal, and salty flavors to the party | Photographs by Dennis Wise
Herbs & Spices Fall in the Northwest is just right for savoring aromatic lavender, sage, basil, and more; warming spices complement the homegrown mood.
The Centerpieces Chai tea and white chocolate mousse cake with notes from the Indian blend—ginger, clove, cinnamon, and cardamom—by Decadence Custom Cakes (206-909-3789, decadencecakesbydan.com) and raw, vegan, gluten-free pumpkin pie with a cacao brownie base by Jodee’s Desserts (206-525-2900, jodeesdesserts.com)
The Bites (clockwise from center) Gingerbread bars with orange zest and cardamom from the mobile sweets unit Street Treats (206-714-9535, streettreatswa.com), the Sweet Side’s (206-778-4787, ilovethesweetside.com) lemon and lavender sable cookies, and custom-made yeast-raised cinnamon twists finished with pine-infused glaze from Top Pot Doughnuts (206-323-7841, toppotdoughnuts.com)
The Extras Valley and Co (206-250-2055, valleyandco.com) crafted take-home jars filled with herbed sea salts and spiced pink Himalayan salts.
Haute Chocolate Spike winter events with sweet heat, or add to the essence of Latin and South American themes with chiles, peppers, and other piquant pops.
The Centerpieces Fondant-covered Mexican chocolate cake with spiced buttercream and chile ganache filling by Chocolaz Artisan Cakes (425-281-6677, chocolaz.com) and raw, vegan, gluten-free tiramisu made from Jodee’s Desserts (206-525-2900, jodeesdesserts.com)
The Bites (clockwise from center) Top Pot Doughnuts’ (206-323-7841, toppotdoughnuts.com) custom-made chocolate devil’s food cake doughnut holes finished in cinnamon sugar with a dusting of piment d’espelette, fig cookies rolled in sugar and black pepper from Street Treats (206-714-9535, streettreatswa.com), and Sichuan pepper caramel chews by Fran’s Chocolates (800-422-3726, franschocolates.com)
The Extras Valley and Co’s (206-250-2055, valleyandco.com) take-home bags of Fran’s spiced macadamias (roasted organic nuts caramelized and seasoned with smoked paprika, chile powder, and sea salt) will be the perfect pick-them-up the day after.
Stumptown’s cold-brew coffee takes a starring role in this vegan, raw, gluten-free tiramisu.
Salty & Savory How posh! A fromage course in between the main and dessert introduces the complex and unusual flavors to come.
The Centerpiece Scout Café and Honor Bar’s (360-377-4223) “cheese cake,” made with stacked wheels of goat’s and cow’s milk cheeses from France, California, and Kurtwood Farms on Vashon Island and decorated with candied orange slices
The Bites (clockwise from right) Hot Cakes’ (206-420-3431, getyourhotcakes.com) bake-on-site dark chocolate decadence molten cake with black truffle caramel sauce; custom-made yeast-raised bismarcks filled with lemon ricotta and finished with chocolate icing, hazelnuts, and lemon alongside sour cream old-fashioned cake doughnuts with caramel icing and crystal salt flakes from Top Pot Doughnuts (206-323-7841, toppotdoughnuts.com)
The Extras Pink Himalayan salt makes for lovely presentations; laurel leaves and mandarin oranges take the place of floral arrangements.
Fruits & Nuts Timed to harvests of regional berries, stone fruits, and hazelnuts, local menus conclude with inventive and expressive final courses.
The Centerpiece The Sweet Side’s (206-778-4787, ilovethesweetside.com) candied lemon cream cake with a textured and sugared buttercream finish
The Bites (clockwise from top) Coconut brownies from Street Treats (206-714-9535, streettreatswa.com); apple, cardamom, and ginger pie pockets by Hot Cakes (206-420-3431, getyourhotcakes.com); chocolate-dipped Calimyrna figs filled with dark chocolate ganache from Fran’s Chocolates (800-422-3726, franschocolates.com); wrapped and string-tied blueberry lemon mini pies from the Sweet Side; Fran’s chocolate-dipped tart Blenheim apricots; poached pear, clove, and ginger tarts by Decadence Custom Cakes (206-909-3789, decadencecakesbydan.com); the Sweet Side’s lemon anise biscotti; oatmeal and cranberry cookie with orange zest and cardamom by Street Treats; Snoqualmie Ice Cream’s (360-668-8535, snoqualmieicecream.com) custom-formulated coconut lemongrass ice cream
The Extras Valley and Co’s (206-250-2055, valleyandco.com) whole candied and sugared Meyer lemons have bling appeal; farmers market–inspired serving and décor pieces keep things cozy.