I know I am a bit late to the table with my Daiya dairy free New York Cheezecake review. One of my resolutions for 2016 is to keep more up-to-date when it comes to identifying new products, tracking them down, sampling them, and writing reviews. So here is a good start, and better later than never.
In my defense, for the longest time, I had heard about this product, but had no idea where to look for it. It didn’t occur to me that it would be kept in the frozen food section. But upon checking Whole Foods website, sure enough, that’s where they said they kept it. And the first time I checked in a Whole Foods for the Daiya cheezecakes, what do you know? There they were.
Or I should say, there were two of them: the New York style reviewed here (or plain or original if you prefer – my guess is that the other three also have that New York style consistency – dense, rich, etc.) and the chocolate variety. After reading a review of all four on Fork and Beans, I had decided that the chocolate and New York were the two I wanted to try, so it all worked out for me. If I ever track down the Key Lime and Strawberry varieties, I will tell you what I think of them too.
Anyway… so yes, I followed the directions to defrost the cheezecake in the refrigerator for about 6 hours, before slicing it on a plate and leaving it to defrost for another 20 minutes and then preparing to eat.
I am almost tempted to quip in the above photograph “actual size” simply because this cheezecake is small. If you’re used to getting your cheesecake in a New York City diner, you will be shocked at how small this cake is (it’s at best half the size of a normal cheesecake). And at $9.99 per, you might feel a little cheated. But, not to steal my own thunder, but a quarter slice of this is plenty filling.
Now, I am sure I would have been happy eating my slice plain, but I thought it would be more fun to jazz it up a little. Besides, it was still the holidays (this was the week between Xmas and New Year’s), so why not live large, right? So I whipped up a can of coconut cream, sliced up some strawberries and doused them with confectioner’s sugar, and had a cake with fruit and cream experience.
In short, I loved it. Sorry that the whipped cream looks a little chunky – it was actually light and creamy though it may not look it. The cheezecake was wonderful. It had a little teensy bit of that usual Daiya tang to it – I don’t know what that is, maybe their mixture of tapioca starch, potato starch, pea protein, etc. – but all their products have that same flavor in the background, for me. But that notwithstanding, I thought this stood up to any dairy free cheesecake I have eaten.
I say that, because while I would like to say it’s as good as dairy cheesecake, honestly, it’s been 20-plus years since I have tasted one of those, so I am not sure. I can definitely compare it favorably to cheesecakes I have had from Vegan Treats, for example, and also the lovely tofu cheesecakes they used to serve at the Zen Palate restaurants here in NYC (so sorry to hear that the last Zen Palate open has bitten the dust!). Which is to say: creamy, luscious, just the right amount of sweetness and nice tang, and the graham cracker crust is nice too (a bit pasty, but over all, a good effort on the crust).
Looking forward to trying the chocolate variety – maybe this weekend!
P.S. I tried the chocolate variety – creamier than the New York style maybe, and also quite wonderful with coconut whipped cream on top, as you can see below.