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Best of Canberra taste off – Winter desserts

By Bec Cuzzillo 27 July 2015 4

After last week’s call out, there are two possible scenarios for Canberra’s winter dessert situation. Either, there aren’t many places that serve warm desserts, or the cold weather doesn’t bother RiotACT readers who are all happy to eat ice cream in sub-zero temperatures. Either way, the top two nominations for best winter desserts in Canberra were Koko Black and Frugii.

Shout outs go to the person who voted for a nice whiskey at Hippo Bar in the City and whoever nominated the self-injecting jam doughnuts at Capitol Bar and Grill at QT Canberra. I think I might put those two ideas together and head out for a warm winter’s nightcap sometime soon.

For now it’s back to the taste off. On Friday night I grabbed a couple of friends and we went out to put Koko Black and Frugii to the test.

Koko Black

First up, we tried Koko Black on Bunda Street in the city. For the uninitiated, Koko Black is a delicious specialty chocolate shop. Being a Friday night, the place was packed and we waited in line for a few minutes to get a table. Koko Black has a great winter atmosphere with cosy, warm vibes. It didn’t even matter that we were seated outside thanks to some nifty overhead heaters.

We shared the decadent Belgian Spoil. At $17, it is pretty good value and you get to try a little bit of everything – two pralines, chocolate cherry royale (a warm cherry marshmallow coated in chocolate), chocolate alchemy gateau (a layered chocolate cake with chocolate mousse and chewy caramel), chocolate mousse and chocolate ice cream. I already knew I liked Koko Black’s chocolate mousse, but now I’m not so sure which of their desserts is my fave. It was all absolutely delicious and, I mean, who doesn’t like a good overload of chocolate in winter?

Frugii

Next, we made our way over to Frugii Dessert Laboratory on Lonsdale Street in Braddon. The Braddon shopfront has only been open for six or seven months, but the Frugii name has been kicking around Canberra for a while now. Best known for their delicious and inventive ice creams, Frugii was not what I expected to be eating for a winter dessert taste off.

We tried one of the salted butter caramel profiteroles and a big single scoop of the truffle ice cream. Being winter in Canberra, it’s truffle season and we thought it was the most appropriate flavour to try. Truffle in ice cream form is pretty unusual, but we liked it a lot. The profiterole wasn’t our favourite though. We were hoping for a pastry that would give a good crunch with a thick decadent caramel that oozed out, but unfortunately we got no crunch nor ooze.

I normally rate Frugii pretty highly, but I think we made the wrong choice with the profiterole. This week, for it’s warm, cosy vibes and decadent chocolate offerings, I am awarding Koko Black with Canberra’s best winter dessert.


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4 Responses to
Best of Canberra taste off – Winter desserts
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Southmouth 8:15 am 29 Jul 15

I’ve never had anything at Frugii that I didn’t absolutely love. I do look forward to a time when they move to a larger premises however.

astrojax 10:16 am 28 Jul 15

jsm2090 said :

I really enjoy Koko Black, and am not a fan of Frugii’s ice cream, but feel I have to jump to the defence of the salted caramel choux as I had one on Saturday and it was spectacular. A very light crunch on the outside was present, and you certainly don’t want anything harder from a profiterole. All the fillings are a creme patissiere too, so it is unreasonable to expect any ooze. The filling had a perfect balance of sweetness and saltiness.

well said – i was a little aghast at the expectation of a profiterole in the op. must try it now!

a malt worth its salt at hippo should be caol ila, an islay malt with all that rich peaty goodness and a wondrous smooth fire and softening after taste of the grains and some sense of grounded earth.

jsm2090 1:10 pm 27 Jul 15

I really enjoy Koko Black, and am not a fan of Frugii’s ice cream, but feel I have to jump to the defence of the salted caramel choux as I had one on Saturday and it was spectacular. A very light crunch on the outside was present, and you certainly don’t want anything harder from a profiterole. All the fillings are a creme patissiere too, so it is unreasonable to expect any ooze. The filling had a perfect balance of sweetness and saltiness.

Ezy 9:05 am 27 Jul 15

I tried that truffle ice cream on the weekend – really really good.
As for the whisky at hippo – I highly recommend the Nikka from the Barrel, a beautiful Japanese whisky.

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