New York City is renowned for its innovative restaurant scene and top chefs. Not only is the Big Apple home to delicious meals, but also desserts, most notably in the West Village. Whether you’re craving chocolate martinis, fresh-baked pastries or want to make your own cupcake you can find it in this neighborhood. To help you plan your itinerary — and allow you to burn off some of those calories — here is a NYC dessert walking tour of West Village.
Start by taking the 1 or 2 subway lines to Christopher Street-Sheridan Square or the A, B, C, D, E, F and M trains to West Fourth Street — Washington Square. From Christopher Street-Sheridan Square walk toward traffic on 7th Avenue South and then make a left onto Christopher Street. From the West Fourth Street — Washington Square station walk toward traffic on Washington Place until you hit West Fourth. Make a right and then a left onto Christopher Street.
Fill your pockets with Scandinavian sweets[caption id="attachment_11556" align="aligncenter" width="1416"] Pick up a bowlful of Scandinavian treats. Photo by Dr_Kelly[/caption]
The first stop on your dessert walking tour will be Sockerbit (89 Christopher Street), specializing in Scandinavian candy. The bright white walls and large windows of the shop allow lots of natural light and little distraction from the colorful candies neatly separated and labeled in self-scoop bins. Here they play with unusual flavor and texture combinations, so even the marshmallows and chocolates will taste different from what you’re used to. You’ll also probably notice the intense flavors. This is because they use almost exclusively natural ingredients for their sweets.
Tip: Ask a staff member to help you pick out a sampling that will allow you to have a diverse experience and really taste a variety of foreign flavors.
Overdose on carbs[caption id="attachment_12116" align="aligncenter" width="1024"] Photo by Gary Wong[/caption]
From there, make a left onto Bleecker Street and head to Amy’s Bread (250 Bleecker Street), renowned around the country for their artisanal made-from-scratch breads — some even made with local flour — and sumptuous baked goods. If you’re full, it’s still worth a stop to simply gaze through the window at the beautiful slow-fermented, hand-shaped bread creations. That being said, it’s highly recommended to taste something. Her cakes look like works of art, especially the nostalgia-inducing yellow cake with pink powdered sugar buttercream.
Get back to your inner child[caption id="attachment_12122" align="aligncenter" width="1000"] Photo by Michelle Lee[/caption]
Make a right out of Amy’s and continue down Bleecker to the next stop on your dessert walking tour: Molly’s Cupcakes (228 Bleecker Street) where you can choose to order one of their made-from-scratch cupcakes or create your own using flavors like red velvet, vanilla and chocolate and fillings such as butterscotch caramel, cake batter and coconut macadamia. They even have a sprinkle station in case you need more toppings. After you’re settled with your treat sit at a table and play one of the board or card games lining the shelves of the sweetery, or get in touch with your inner child at one of the bar-side swings.
The great Gelato battle[caption id="attachment_11566" align="aligncenter" width="1290"] The molten chocolate gelato at Grom. Photo by David Woo [/caption]
Make a left out of Molly’s and a right onto Carmine Street until you hit the corner of Bleecker Street where Grom (233 Bleecker Street) is. This is an Italian gelato chain — which originated in Milano — making classic-style gelato with high-quality ingredients like Sicilian lemons, Madagascar vanilla and Colombian chocolate. A few doors down is also Popbar (5 Carmine Street) that serves artisanal gelato made with natural ingredients on a stick. Choose from flavors like banana, coffee, chocolate, pistachio and peanut butter before letting them know if you’d like it dipped in a sweet sauce and sprinkled with jimmies, nuts, cookie crumbles or coffee shavings.
The greatest pairing on the planet[caption id="attachment_11570" align="aligncenter" width="768"] The most delightful pairing of cupcakes and wine. Photo by Dan Dickinson[/caption]
End your sweet-tooth experience with a dessert and wine pairing at Sweet Revenge (62 Carmine Street). To get here, you’ll make a right out of Popbar and continue down Carmine until you reach the destination. This cozy venue specializes in made-from-scratch-cupcakes — although they also serve savory food if you feel a cavity coming on — and has an impressive selection of lesser known wine and beers. A recommendation is the namesake “Sweet Revenge Cupcake” featuring a moist peanut butter cake stuffed with ganache and topped with peanut butter fudge frosting. This is paired with your choice of Juan Benegas Malbec (Argentina) or Weihenstephaner Hefe Weiss (Germany). Another must-try is the “Crimson & Cream Cupcake” (pictured above), a raspberry red velvet cake with cream cheese frosting, a sprinkle of cinnamon and a drizzle of raspberry coulis paired with a raspberry bellini or Belhaven beer from Scotland.Chocolate martini and chocolate chocolates at Ayza. Photo by Ayza Chocolate Bar [/caption]
Bonus Stop: Make a left out of Sweet Revenge on Carmine and a right onto 7th Avenue South and you’ll reach Ayza Chocolate & Wine Bar (17th Avenue South), which offers one of NYC’s most decadent chocolate martini menus, not to mention artisanal chocolates from local chocolatiers and delicious fondues.