By Nikki Bayley
Vancouverites have a sweet tooth and love to dive straight into dessert, after all, life’s too short to wait for the last course! There are dozens of specialty dessert cafes and bars around the city that offer adventurous options when it comes to picking something sweet. From green tea macarons to raspberry and earl grey cream puffs, Vancouver’s got the lot and plenty use ingredients from right here in the lower mainland. Here are seven of our favourite spots to eat dessert in Vancouver.
When it comes to gelato, there can be only one choice in Vancouver and it has to be the multi-award winning Bella Gelateria whose menu of incredibly smooth iced treats changes according to whatever is seasonally available from local farmers. This includes the finest berries from Krause Berry Farm and silky creamy goat cheese from Happy Farms in Abbotsford.
Head across town to West 16th Ave in Kitsilano to visit everyone’s favourite locals-loving dessert spot which has plenty of options for those who are gluten-free as well as gluten fans. Sweet Obsession only use free-run Rabbit River Farm eggs, and their berries come from Krause Berry Farms. In Langley, try the seasonally-changing fruit tart with chocolate mousse made with all-local berries.
Pronounced ‘crack-le-creme’ this bijou specialty crème brûlée and waffle bar makes their must-have desserts from all kinds of exotic ingredients from pandan to Tahitian vanilla, however, you can find a local flavour if you pick the Vietnamese Coffee crème brûlée, which uses East Van Roaster coffee from Gastown. Lavender-infused brûlées use fragrant flowers from nearby Happy Valley farm.
Right in the heart of Gastown you’ll find this year’s dessert sensation, Soft Peaks, who make their gorgeous soft-serve ice cream from Avalon organic milk from Burnaby. You can choose a variety of toppings but their honeycomb, which is their best seller, comes from the Fraser Valley.
Slip down to one of the city’s best kept secrets, delicious Soirette Macarons and Tea where you’ll find crisp and chewy fresh-baked French-style macarons bursting with B.C. blueberries; or maybe try their ‘Vancouver Fog’ macaron that’s made with organic lavender and earl grey tea.
Make a pit stop in the heart of town and visit the award-winning Thierry whose tarts always reflect the best of the season using berries, pears and chestnuts from the Fraser Valley and other local suppliers. Try the delicious all-local strawberry-basil tart.
The cream puffs at Beta-5 have reached cult status, filled fresh to order and always somehow more delicious than you ever dreamed they could be. As international award winners, Beta-5 look close to home for their inspiration, using local and organic ingredients whenever possible. Queue up with other dessert fans and try the seasonally-available B.C. blueberry and lavender cream puff.