Every Valentine’s date should end on a sweet note, and these top desserts for two are the perfect climax. You’ll have an afterglow before you even head home.
La Boucherie, Los Angeles, California
Goodness gracious, great ball of fire! A waterfall of blazing brandy douses the spherical mousse au chocolate, which melts – just like your date’s heart – to reveal ice cream inside. Guaranteed to fan the flames of desire. Make a reservation at La Boucherie.
Booth One, Chicago, Illinois
The DIY dessert lets sweethearts dunk the blushing berries in their choice of crème fraîche, whipped cream, brown sugar, Grand Marnier, and bittersweet chocolate. Then lovebirds can feed them to each other while making eyes at one another. Because that’s what romance is all about. Make a reservation at Booth One.
The Riggsby, Washington, D.C.
You and your date don’t have to be blazed to enjoy the Pot Brownie Sundae, but we’re not saying it wouldn’t hurt. A warm brownie packed with hazelnut ganache comes coronated with vanilla ice cream, chocolate ice cream, chocolate pearls, hazelnut brittle, chocolate toffee, whipped cream, and chocolate sauce. Basically, everything a couple of stoners could ever want. Make a reservation at the Riggsby.
La Table, Houston, Texas
We <3 heart-shaped macarons. Especially this sizeable sweet, available in either raspberry or pistachio. Show your date how much you love them by insisting they savor the last bite. Make a reservation at La Table.
Imperial Lamian, Chicago, Illinois
Part dessert, part magic show. Melted hot chocolate is poured over the white chocolate shell, splitting it open to reveal a sweet surprise: berry bedecked pandan cake with vanilla gelato. If you don’t Boomerang it, you’re missing an opportunity to make your friends jealous. Make a reservation at Imperial Lamian.
Burlock Coast, Fort Lauderdale, Florida
Gluttony on a platter. The Avalanche Sundae is all the good things. Scoops of vanilla, chocolate, and strawberry ice cream are topped with salted caramel, chocolate sauce, brownie bits, housemade Kit Kats, pineapple chutney, and toasted marshmallows. Make a reservation at Burlock Coast.
Moulin, Newport Beach, California
We’re sure St. Valentine would have loved the St. Valentin. Fresh raspberries and blackberries sit atop a cloud of pâte à choux. A pair of puff pastries enrobed with caramelized sugar and berry glaze complete the blushingly beautiful treat. Make a reservation at Moulin.
Wildfire, Eden Prairie, Minnesota
Enjoy a threesome on Valentine’s Day. Of course, we’re talking about this tantalizing trio: Key lime pie, chocolate peanut butter pie, and an ice cream sandwich. What did you think we meant? Make a reservation at Wildfire.
Cold Storage, Chicago, Illinois
There are eight scoops of ice cream and sorbet in this epic ending. Oh, yeah, and hot fudge, salted caramel sauce, brownie chunks, a bunch of crunch, whipped cream, cherries, and a waffle cone. No wonder they call this beast of a feast the Narwhal. Make a reservation at Cold Storage.
The Bazaar by José Andrés, Los Angeles, California
Your table is about to get tagged. The pastry team creates Dessert Graffiti in real time by covering the tabletop with chocolates, bonbons, dinosaur-shaped ice creams, cannelés, tarts, cookies, cakes, streams of caramel sauce, and dollops of whipped cream. #EdibleArt. Make a reservation at the Bazaar by José Andrés.
Leuca, Brooklyn, New York
This beyond-decadent dessert gives us all the feels. A tumble of coffee crumble, a pane of toffee brittle, cubes of fudge cake, and cocoa Chantilly cream grace orbs of salted chocolate chip and toffee gelato. As if that wasn’t enough, it’s finished with caramel and chocolate sauces. (Note: This gem is available every day except 2/14.) Make a reservation at Leuca.
Tell us your picks for the top desserts for two here or over on Facebook, G+, Instagram, Pinterest, or Twitter. And, be sure to enter our #ValenDinesDay giveaway for a chance to win Valentine’s Day dinner for two.
Nevin Martell is a Washington, D.C.-based food and travel writer and the author of several books, including Freak Show Without A Tent: Swimming with Piranhas, Getting Stoned in Fiji and Other Family Vacations. Find him on Twitter @nevinmartell and Instagram @nevinmartell.
Photo credits: John Stoffer (Booth One); Scott Suchman (The Riggsby); Anjali Pinto (Wildfire); Christine Domino (Cold Storage); Andre Maier (The Bazzar).