Julianna’s birthday was last week, so we felt like cake was in order. Vanessa had read about the opening of “The Best Chocolate Cake in the World” in Soho recently, we though this only appropriate for our first cake tasting.
We each ordered a slice. Julianna enjoys bitter chocolate, so she got the bittersweet (70% cocoa) and Vanessa ordered the original (53% cocoa). Apparently they also have a bitter, zero-sugar version lower calorie option but we didn’t see that.
When we ordered the server asked if we would like milk or coffee, Julianna thought that was a sign that we were in for a serious chocolate treat. Vanessa was less impressed. While we waited for our cake we noticed the girls next to us enthusiastically scraping their plates with their forks. in Julianna’s opinion this was another good sign.
The cake was delivered. Although its not the fanciest looking thing in the world, what it lacks in looks it makes up for in taste. The cake is composed of layers of chocolate meringue and chocolate mousse with a thin glaze of ganache. Vanessa argues that since it was flourless it was more of a torte than a cake, conjuring up the old pie v. cake debate. Julianna didn’t really care what they called it, she just wanted to eat more. Both the bitter sweet and the original are rather sweet and rich, despite that it was still light and not too filling (we guess the meringue helps keep it light). Neither of us were willing to give it the title of the best chocolate cake in the world, but we definitely thought it was delicious!
Rating: 4.25 (average of Julianna’s 5 and Vanessa’s 3.5)
We were extremely apprehensive about this, and assumed it would be Momofuku Milk Bar-esque (their soft-serve flavors have included cereal milk, peach tea, and stuffing) situation–weirdly kitschy, fun to eat for about two seconds until you realize it is just too strange to continue. Vanessa conjectured that Sweet Corn custard might taste like Corn Pops cereal–which Julianna is not a fan of. With this in mind, we didn’t even get a milkshake, but instead opted to share one serving.
Oh, but how wrong we were! It was a perfect blend of salty and sweet, with a real, rich custard taste and just a hint of corn flavor. It was both unique and delicious–a hard combination to pull off. Clearly we were being punished for being such timid testers. After quickly finishing our shared helping of Sweet Corn, we agreed that we still didn’t really want it in a milkshake. What we did want was the custard slathered with hot caramel topping (and perhaps chocolate sauce because, as Julianna says, everything is better with chocolate). In any case, we are sure the caramel would make in even more intensely salty-sweet.
While we were busy shoving our faces full of Boston Creme Pie on Wednesday, our dear friend Emily enjoyed a Black and White Milkshake from Shake Shack.
We spend so much time trying to sample the specials custards we dont get to give a lot of attention to the regular flavors, so it was nice to have Emily putting her two cents in.
She liked her Black and White milkshake, but it wasn’t what she had expected. A native of Florida, Emily was hoping for a milkshake in the vein of the Stake and Shake side by side with half vanilla and half chocolate ice cream, instead of vanilla ice cream with chocolate sauce through out. Despite her disappointment, she couldn’t argue with it’s deliciousness.
Before the sampling began, Vanessa had to explain what real Boston Cream Pie was to Julianna (who had only ever had the doughnut, but not the real thing): a cake with vanilla pudding or custard between the layers, topped with a chocolate glaze or ganache. We wondered, as we often do, how they were going to pull this flavor off–it seemed complicated. The result was a custard that tasted vaguely of cake batter (that flavor was stronger in the plain custard than the shake), and had a hint of chocolate. It was pretty good, but the problem with cake batter-flavored things is, they never seems to quite measure up to real cake batter (and this didn’t either). We do, however, applaud Shake Shake for attempting such a specific flavor.