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Seasons Eatings: The Best Dessert Spots in NYC

Category Broadway

|by Matthew Wexler |


Treat yourself to NYC sweets this holiday

Whether you’re headed to New York City this holiday season to indulge in a Broadway show, or are hitting the streets to experience many of its iconic attractions, be sure to carve out enough time for a sweet treat. Many of the world’s most celebrated pastry chefs, as well as culinarily creative small business owners, head to the Big Apple to stake their claim in this foodie town.

Our suggestion? Skip the subway or rideshare and walk those few extra blocks. It’s a terrific way to take in the sights and burn those extra calories! You’ll be well rewarded at one of these must-eat spots:

Black Tap offers a mouthwatering selection of monster milkshakes (Photo: Black Tap Craft Burgers & Beer)

Black Tap offers a mouthwatering selection of monster milkshakes (Photo: Black Tap Craft Burgers & Beer)

Patisserie Chanson  
London-born chef Rory Mcdonald brings his pastry skills to this bi-level Chelsea spot that’s brimming with pastries, éclaires, cakes and more. Stop by for afternoon tea or book a table at the 16-seat subterranean dessert bar. The six-course tasting menu offers contemporary riffs on traditional patisseries set against the backdrop of a prohibition-era casino academy (20 West 23rd Street, 929-423-8880).

Pairs well with: Garment Center Shopping Tour
A short walk from Patisserie Chanson’s Chelsea location toward the legendary Garment District will position you at the starting point for the Garment Center Insider Shopping Tour. The district celebrates its 100th anniversary in 2019, and has evolved over the decades from a haven for immigrants seeking a better life in America, preceded by the invention of the sewing machine and the production factories that peppered the tightly packed streets.

This insider’s tour offers access to appointment-only showrooms and the opportunity to see the work of a range of designers, from well-known collections to emerging fashion influencers. Participants will visit venues often frequented by fashion editors, buyers and wholesalers. And the best part is that you’ll leave with a list of current sample sales happening throughout the city (Note: tour is for women only).

Black Tap Craft Burgers & Beer
Don’t be fooled by the name. Black Tap creates some of the most coveted milkshakes on the East Coast (as well as Las Vegas and Singapore). The decadent creations have exploded on Instagram, drawing milkshake-craving customers from around the globe. The menu includes more than a dozen varieties, including classics like chocolate, vanilla and cookies and cream, but if you want to go full throttle, consider one of the “crazy shakes.” (Hint: one will feed a crowd.) The revolving menu may include over-the-top creations such as Cotton Candy: a strawberry shake with a vanilla-frosted rim, blue, pink and pearl chocolates topped with a pink lollipop, rock candy, whipped cream and cotton candy.

Pairs well with: The Museum of Modern Art
Head to Black Tap’s Midtown location (136 West 55th St.) and you’ll find yourself just a block away from MoMA. The edible works of art at Black Tap (along with hefty burgers and fries) will provide plenty of fuel to view masterworks by Pablo Picasso, Jackson Pollock and more. Current exhibits worth checking out include “Looking at Jerry Lewis: The Nutty Professor Storyboards” and “Joan Miró: The Birth of the World” (opening Feb. 24).

Magnolia Bakery
No sweet visit to New York City is complete without a stop at the iconic Magnolia Bakery, made famous by Sex and the City and recently featured on Broad City as “the last place tourists go before leaving New York City.” If you want to relive Carrie Bradshaw’s famous scene, order the vanilla cupcake topped with pink buttercream frosting, but those in the know gravitate toward the equally famous banana pudding featuring vanilla wafers, fresh bananas and vanilla pudding (1240 6th Ave.)

Pairs well with: Sex and the City Bus Tour
Magnolia Bakery is just the tip of the icebox for fans of the series, which celebrated its 20th anniversary in 2018. The bus tour showcases many of the series’ most notable locales, including Carrie’s favorite shoe boutique (Jimmy Choo)and the SoHo gallery where Charlotte worked. On-board trivia and clips of many of the show’s favorite scenes make this ride through New York City a must for fans of the show.

Dun-Well Doughnuts
Homer Simpson’s favorite dessert inspired co-founders Christopher Hollowell and Dan Dunbar to open New York City’s first vegan doughnut shop in 2011. The yeast doughnuts come in a variety of classic and seasonal flavors such as chocolate peppermint, jelly-filled, glazed and more. Their mouth-watering Instagram feed has more than 36,000 followers, but you have to head to Williamsburg, Brooklyn or the East Village to experience the real deal in person.

Pairs well with: Stomp
This explosive percussive performance celebrates its 25th anniversary in 2019, having originated in Brighton before premiering at the legendary Edinburgh Fringe Festival. Its East Village location at the Orpheum Theatre is just a block away from Dun-Well’s St. Mark street outpost, and provides the perfect pairing for a night downtown.

For more of the best of NYC during the holiday season, check out our list of the Top Shows in NYC in January 2019.

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