Five dessert studios in Chennai to satiate those sweet cravings
Choux pastry to Cereal Milk Ice Cream, this trail through the city promises oodles of indulgence
The city has been abuzz over the past few months with new dessert studios opening up left, right and centre. Famous for their vegan goodies, AkiMi Gourmet recently opened in Nungambakkam, while earlier this week, Chennai’s first ever Brownie Ice Cream and Sundae store opened its doors in RA Puram. Meanwhile, Sweet Spot, which is known for their menu of home baker specials, opened its first café to much sugar-laden celebration a couple of weeks ago. So the verdict is in: the demand for desserts is on the rise. Here are our picks of sweet destinations to explore this weekend. Homestyle to gourmet, we guarantee a fix for every kind of sugar craving.
Right outside Mexe in Alwarpet is a compact new ice cream spot that opened in July and looks perfect for a quick catch-up and scoop. The highlight here is Cereal Milk Ice Cream which co-founder Anush Rajasekaran tells us, is inspired by Christina Tosi’s Milk Bar outlet’s menu in New York. Rich and creamy with a cornflake crumble to garnish, this nostalgic flavour will definitely have us returning for more. Also not to miss is their Salted Caramel and Lotus Biscoff. We also have our eye on the more elaborate sundae menu for next time with options like Gooey Butter Cake and Banoffee Pie. INR180 for a base flavour, INR 300 for a sundae.
Finale Dessert Bar
Neon signage leads you off the busy Cathedral Road to a quiet lane with this treasure of a find. Straight off the bat, every dessert looks like it rolled off the production line of a MasterChef set. Think choux buns with pops of blue and pink, doughnuts in novel flavours like Hazelnut Latte and a modern spin on the traditional British Eton Mess and a fun cookie line-up. We caught up with Cordon Bleu, London graduated chef and founder Anuhya Reddy who recently launched plated desserts that are available for a dine-in experience only. The Textures of Chocolate plate showcases elements like chocolate soil, coffee caviar and dark chocolate mousse. Meanwhile, there is also a Deconstructed Cheesecake which is sweet and tart with piped swirls of aerated baked cheesecake. But unexpectedly, the winner for us is the simple Tres Leche served with a moist sponge and slices of strawberry on a bed of torched meringue. Pour over the milk (a combination of regular, condensed and evaporated) and we have a symphony on our taste buds. Next up, Anuhya tells us to look forward to a new ‘tropical’ inspired creation with coconut mousse and charred pineapple. Customised celebration cakes like their Tower of Treats (see image above) can be ordered in advance. INR 60 to INR 300.
This popular dessert studio opened its third outlet two weeks ago, this time in collaboration with Davrah Coffee, at Alwarpet. So now between spoonfuls of their Death by Chocolate Crunch, you can sip on the Pulney Special coffee (with roasted beans direct from the Palani Hills). Regulars might already be familiar with their menu of curated bestsellers from home bakers, including signatures like the Galaxy Salted Caramel Cake and tubs of Dairy Milk Pudding, but partner Mohammed Samee tells us that the team is prepping for the Diwali rush with a growing in-house selection of button cupcakes, brownies, macarons and cookies. Desserts at INR 140 to INR 250. Hot and cold brews range between INR 70 to INR 180 to INR 275.
This organic bakery in Alwarpet prides itself on dishing up bakes that are equal parts nutritious and delicious. Look out for crowd favourites like their Almond Cake, Victoria Sponge and Banana Walnut Muffin, alongside all-natural artisanal fruit jams and sauces. Nithya Saravanan, who co-runs the space with partner Saradha Karnan, makes it a point to mention their newly-introduced vegan bakes as well, including Orange and Raisin and Pumpkin Tea cakes. You could also try their artisanal breads, either off the shelf or used in their sandwiches and toasties. “Our breads are made in-house with seven different organic millets,” she says. How is that for a slice of health? INR 70 to INR 285.
If you’re looking for a dessert destination that doesn’t require you to ask questions like: ‘Is that eggless?’ — this spot is for you. Serving sweet treats that are 100% vegetarian, Dessert Addiction with outlets in Kilpauk and Besant Nagar is rolling out a brand new menu this week. Look out for a Brownie Heaven Freakshake, a Turkish Kunafa and for those that enjoy a bit of fusion, a Royal Rasagulla Sundae. Owner Rekha Vaidhyanathan, a baking enthusiast herself assures us that bestsellers from the original menu like the indulgent Tiramisu and cooling Tender Coconut Jelly are not going anywhere. INR 79 to INR 269.