7 Desserts You Must Eat Before Winter Ends

Put these seasonal sweets - from nostalgic treats to booze-spiked gelato - on your dessert to-do list
March 4, 2014
by Tamara Palmer

The Spring Equinox happens on March 20, which means we can't use the excuse of eating dessert to keep warm for much longer. Usher winter out with a bang by digging into our favorite decadent sweets - many of which are only available for a few more weeks. You'll have plenty of time to work it all off later.

Coconut black rice pudding at Kin Khao

Served family-style with coconut milk, caramel and a crunchy mix of brown rice, sesame and peanuts to put on top, part of the inspiration for this comes from a rice pudding called riz au lait that's served by chef Stéphane Jégo at Chez L'Ami Jean in Paris. See more from this new restaurant right this way.

55 Cyril Magnin Street; 415-362-7456

The Lab Cake at The Lab

The most elaborately composed new chocolate dessert in town features dark chocolate mousse cake with a milk chocolate cardamom center sphere, a chocolate covered chocolate shortbread cookie, toasted sesame nougatine and 70% dark chocolate sorbet that tastes remarkably like ice cream. Many of the flavors on the plate are reminiscent of some of the highlights of the Recchiuti truffle collection. Michael Recchiuti says he is thinking about creating a new Lab Cake each quarter, so this is strictly limited edition.

801 22nd Street; 415-489-2881

Apple hand pie at Frances

This dessert beautifully explores a world of tart flavors. Climb a giant mountain of Meyer lemon ice cream with help from a petite pie of Sierra Beauty apples, apricot, pistachio and fennel pollen marmalade.

3870 17th Street; 415-621-3870

Coppa desserts at Delarosa

One quick way to pretend you are wintering in Italy - add a little liquor to your ice cream. Here you have a choice of the Coppa Mela (vanilla gelato, scoop of apple pie, creme anglaise and spiced caramel sauce with optional shot of Nocino walnut liqueur) or the Coppa Mocha (coffee gelato, creme anglaise, chocolate sauce, candied almond and meringue with optional bourbon shot).

2175 Chestnut Street; 415-673-7100

Parsnip cake at Bar Tartine

Co-chef Cortney Burns is thoughtfully ensuring that you get some vegetables somewhere in your dinner. A delicate steamed parsnip cake is made with with koji (a steamed rice fungus), quince and kefir.

561 Valencia Street; 415-487-1600

Fudgsicle sundae at Maven

This is way better than a frosty thing on a stick; those tricks are for kids. Chocolate ice cream, peanuts, salted caramel sauce and a drizzle of aged balsamic vinegar dress this dessert up for adults.

598 Haight Street, 415-829-7982

Cornmeal custard at State Bird Provisions

Nicole Krasinski breathes new life into the custard dessert arena with this warm cornmeal-based custard crowned with chocolate crumble, mapled apricots and walnuts.

1529 Fillmore Street; 415-795-1272