Best Thing We Ate

Best Thing We Ate: Brioche Beignets at Congress

By Megan Giller  |  November 20, 2013

We like pastry chef Erica Waksmunski’s style (and no, we don’t mean just her tattoos and pretty dresses). The chef’s desserts at Congress are playful yet refined, and their throwback ingredients (graham crackers, pudding, marshmallow cream) bring us back to our childhood in an elegant way. About her fried sweets like fried butterscotch pudding and the banana cream-stuffed beignets, Waksmunski told us, “I’ve been thinking about what Texans want, and finally I said, f*#k it, I’m going to fry pudding.”

We almost couldn’t decide which dessert was better - the rich butterscotch that bursts from its buttery shell and is sided with English toffee, cocoa-nib sorbet and fresh tangerine slices, or the donuts, which absorb the banana cream into their bready brioche crust. But the cinnamon streusel and peanut butter powder on the beignets tipped the scale. Waksmunski nods at Momofuku Milk Bar’s Christina Tosi's cereal milk ice cream with her own cinnamon toast ice cream that's served on the trio of beignets' side. The edible flower petals on the dish cement it as one of Austin’s most stylish - not to mention delicious - desserts.