In dc, dessert, ice cream, street food on August 2, 2009 at 8:59 pm
If you live in any large city, you’ll know that frozen yogurt is now chic. A slough of competing franchises
have popped up in recent years, all offering antiseptic, funky plastic interiors, a sparse menu of yogurt choices, and a wide array of mix-and-match toppings.
Tangysweet, located in DC’s Dupont Circle, opened just over a year ago, and is now a well-known destination spot on a hot summer day. Two days ago, Tangysweet introduced cupcakes by Red Velvet Cupcakery to its menu. I thought I’d go check it out.
As with any upscale fro-yo establishment, the best Tangysweet yogurt flavor is the original, or “classic”; other flavors are too syrupy sweet. Tangysweet’s classic is, well, tangy and sweet, with a crisp flavor to savor. The frozen dessert is so stiff that it peaks in a towering tip of classic soft-serve swirl. The yogurt melts slowly and stubbornly in your mouth, letting you savor the taste. More than a dozen possible toppings include smashed Reeses Peanut Butter Cups, Gummi Bears, and mini chocolate chips. Chopped fruit and berries pair well with the tart of the yogurt, while sweet granola adds crunch. No matter what your choice of toppings, this is one good treat.
Photo courtesy of soon 2B sonju.
The new cupcakes are luscious. They fit nicely in the palm of your hand, the perfect size to satisfy your mouth while not overloading your stomach or your insulin levels. The cake is sinfully moist, and pairs exquisitely with the icing, smoothed elegantly in a rounded dome and dotted with a few well-placed sprinkles. The red velvet cupcake with whipped cream cheese frosting is as good as any I’ve had, with the light crunch of a crusty exterior shell giving way to rich, creamy icing. The Red Velvet Cupcakery has outdone itself.
The one caveat to this new partnership of two delicious treats, is that the two products do not play well together. The light freshness of the yogurt is overpowered by the dense, full-flavored cupcake. The yogurt is positively disappointing if you eat it after the cupcake, the icing too heavy and mouth-filling if you eat it after the yogurt. Stick to one choice per visit. You’ll just have to come back another time.
In dc, dessert, ice cream, party on June 21, 2009 at 8:31 am
Despite the schizophrenic weather today (grey blanket of clouds to cheery sunshine to twenty-minute DOWNPOUR to sunshine to persistent drizzle to sun again) the Capitol Hill Ice Cream Party went on. The Party is sponsored annually by the International Dairy Foods Association, visiting Washington to win political favor for all the dairy farmers back home.
As with most parties on Capitol Hill, the Congressional Ice Cream Party is something that receives a lot of hype but isn’t that much fun once you get there. It was not, as I hopefully imagined, a place to mingle. It was, however, a place where the ice cream was served quickly, in GIANT portions and in seemingly endless supply. The members had their own roped-off area in which to schmooze. A sound system (hilariously) blared the uncensored version of Katy Perry’s “Hot ‘n Cold,” which I imagine is all the rage among the senators and representatives nowadays. Countless interns bustled back and forth to their offices, toting cafeteria trays and even box lids piled high with bowls of ice cream.
Five inventive ice cream flavors by Jack & Jill Ice Cream were served: cinnamon, peach, black raspberry chocolate, birthday cake, and a pomegranate/lemon sorbet hybrid. Vanilla was available exclusively at the tables serving root beer floats. The ice cream appeared to have been super-frozen to withstand the DC heat, and was almost too creamy. The birthday cake ice cream was a standout, though Coldstone still does it better (and costs you five times the calories, I might add.) Peach was simple but tasty. Black raspberry chocolate, which looked like a lavender mint chocolate chip, had a very strong flavor. The pomegranate/lemon sorbet was a valiant try, but for all its mainstream popularity right now, I wonder how many people know what a pomegranate actually tastes like. It’s a tough flavor to pin down. Cinnamon needed to be paired with chocolate sauce (available along with caramel sauce and others at scattered round tables.)
Really, though, the point of this party isn’t to wax analytic on the consistency and flavor of ice cream. It’s a chance to get out of the stuffy old office, stretch your legs a bit, breathe, and indulge in a free summer treat. I may not have been bowled over by this party, but the contented smiles on a lot of members’ faces would suggest that they feel otherwise.