Atlas Café’s Vegan Treats: My Dessert Crawl, Part 3

Atlas Cafe's Vegan Treats

Atlas Cafe’s Vegan Treats

I would be remiss in conducting my exploration of New York City’s best vegan desserts if I did not give a prominent place to Atlas Cafe.  Without too much deliberation, I can easily give them the prize of best vegan desserts anywhere in New York City.  However, their desserts are not made on sight, and they’re not even made in New York.  Atlas Cafe is a customer of Vegan Treats from near Philadelphia, which provides desserts to not just Atlas Cafe, but many other fine restaurants here.

But no one carries as vast a selection of Vegan Treats’ desserts as Atlas Cafe – they cover pretty much every corner of the Vegan Treats menu.  Being there on Tuesday afternoon, when they get their weekly delivery from Vegan Treats, is a breathtaking experience.  There are so many different cakes and cheesecakes and brownies and cookies and other pastries that it would take me weekly visits for many many months to try them all.  Even when I don’t come on Tuesday, there is so much that it takes me several minutes to decide what I want to buy this time!

Today, I chose a half dozen different desserts for a dinner tomorrow with my family.  They have already tasted Atlas Cafe’s desserts, back in August when I took them on a food crawl of the East Village.  So I’m sure they are going to love these desserts.  I went for a mix of some of my favorites and some new ones I’ve never tasted before.

Favorites?  Yes, I do have many.  My friends, keep in mind that I have been eating Vegan Treats’  desserts for more than 15 years.  There used to be a health food store called Healthy Pleasures near NYU on University Place that carried a selection of Vegan Treats desserts that rivaled what Atlas Cafe carries.  One of my favorite vegan restaurants in New York City, Red Bamboo, also carries Vegan Treats desserts, and I usually will have a slice of something when I am there.  So when I say that I have favorites, I mean that there are some varieties of cakes that I have eaten so many times I don’t even know how many times I have eaten them.

Tops on my favorites list is the Death By Chocolate cake.

Death By Chocolate Cake

Death By Chocolate Cake

This cake features chocolate om four different forms: rich chocolate cake with a layer of chocolate mousse in the middle, surrounded by chocolate butter cream icing and then topped off with dark chocolate ganache.  I remember one time ordering this cake at Healthy Pleasures and a Swedish tourist heard me say the name of the cake, and he couldn’t believe what it was called.

“Death by Chocolate?” he said, aghast.

“I have eaten it many times,” I explained.  “It hasn’t killed me yet, but I haven’t given up!”

It is incredibly rich.  I will take a bite of this tomorrow, but leave it mainly for our guests to see whether they can get through a bite and live to tell the tale!

One of my other favorites is Vegan Treats’ Strawberry Shortcake.

Strawberry Shortcake

Strawberry Shortcake

The shortcake is incredibly decadent, being covered in chocolate ganache.  However, within the context of Vegan Treats desserts, it is actually one of the lighter offerings.  And it is Therese’s favorite.  The others tasted this cake back in the summer when we were at Atlas Cafe, so hopefully they will leave it alone so that Therese can have most of it!

Peanut Butter Mousse Bomb cake is an over-the-top, ridiculously rich and amazing cake.

Peanut Butter Mousse Bomb Cake

Peanut Butter Mousse Bomb Cake

This is a chocolate layer cake (again) with peanut butter mousse in between the layers.  Then a huge ball of peanut butter mousse is on top of each slice, covered with chocolate ganache, and then decorated with a little peanut butter icing.  When you get a bite of this cake with that mousse in it, it is like visiting peanut butter heaven.  I will fight for a bite of this, but leave it mostly to the newbies to discover.

The fourth favorite is a blueberry cheesecake.

Blueberry Cheesecake

Blueberry Cheesecake

I don’t know if you can appreciate what a massive slice of cheesecake that is.  In any event, there is enough for all of us to have a good bite.  The white cream swirl around the edge is essential noshing – a perfect balance to the dense richness of the vegan cheesecake and the sweet blueberries on top.

So those are the desserts I have eaten before.  The new ones to me are two brownies: a peanut butter mousse brownie (I know, maybe a bit redundant with the cake of the same variety) and a brownie with whipped cream and chocolate sauce streamed over the top.  That second one I will probably keep all to myself!

OK, since I am the host, I guess I will have to share a little of it with my guests.  Maybe I will eat half of it and offer the other half for everyone else to dig into.

About Karl Peterson

Karl Peterson is an avid traveler, passionate about food and food-related entertainment, completely allergic to dairy. He is founder, owner and principle contributor to “The Dairy Free Traveler” blog. The Dairy Free Traveler perfectly dovetails two of his greatest areas of interest: traveling near and far, and searching for great cuisine (especially dairy free!)

The Dairy Free Traveler publishes original material about the dairy free lifestyle, eating the best food in the most interesting destinations around the world. Karl’s tours take him from thriving New York City, to exotic Marrakesh, to elegant Paris bistros — (yes! even Parisians have gotten on the dairy free bandwagon.)

The Dairy Free Traveler himself also engages with independent dairy free food producers, highlighting new dairy free product launches and events that support dairy free entrepreneurs.

Peterson is among the top 7 most widely read TripAdvisor reviewers in New York City and is repeatedly cited as a Top Contributor at TripAdvisor.com. His reviews have garnered more than 542,000 readers — half in the U.S., and half among the many countries he has visited around the world.

Beyond writing this blog, Peterson is a published author, with contributions to “Savoring Gotham” edited by Andrew F. Smith (published 2015 by Oxford University) and the forthcoming Oxford Companion to Cheese (a bit ironic, yes, but a professional is often asked to stretch beyond their comfort zone!).

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One Response to Atlas Café’s Vegan Treats: My Dessert Crawl, Part 3

  1. Pingback: Dairy Free Desserts of 2013: My 10 Best | The Dairy Free Traveler

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