Great chocolate desserts and treats in Evanston?
I'm an editor for a student publication at Northwestern University. We're rounding up and reviewing 100 top chocolates in the Evanston area (within walking distance of downtown). It can be anything with chocolate: Cakes, brownies, cookies, milkshakes, bars, crepes, etc.
Any suggestions? We'd love to hear 'em! =)
Well, to start with, Evanston has the very best artisanal chocolatier in the entire Chicago area: Piron Belgian Chocolatier on Main Street, www.belgchocpiron.com Bob Piron and his brother were trained in Belgium and get many of their ingredients and equipment from there. All their filled chocolates are superb, from the shells, to the truffles, to the marzipan, etc. Even their nut barks are great. (Ethel's Chocolate Lounge on Davis Street can be interesting, but the chocolates at Piron are much better! www.ethelschocolate.com )
Al's Deli on Noyes Street has the best chocolate chip cookies you can buy. They're as good as the best homemade ones you've ever had. Their iced chocolate cookies are good too. www.alsdeli.net
Evanston has numerous restaurants serving outstanding chocolate desserts. Perhaps the best is Oceanique on Main Street, with their signature "day and night" cake with white and dark chocolate mousse layers. www.oceanique.com
Bennison's on Davis Street has a lot of baked goods. Not many are chocolate based, but they have great chocolate rum balls. Their "black and white" cookies are pretty good too. www.bennisonscakes.com
I find the desserts at Foodstuffs on Central Street to be inconsistent in quality, but their caramel brownies are pretty darn good. www.foodstuffs.com
Just down the street, Tag's is known for their florentines. www.tagscakes.com
Maggiano's at Old Orchard in Skokie, just west of Evanston, has a terrific chocolate layer cake called a chocolate zuccotto cake. www.maggianos.com
Two more I can think of.
At Jilly's Cafe just north of Central Street, they serve their "chocolate trio" - a flourless chocolate cake, a pot de creme, and an ice-cream-filled profiterole with chocolate sauce. www.jillyscafe.com
Walker Brothers Original Pancake House is just over the town line in Wilmette. They're best known for numerous dishes that don't contain chocolate, most notably their fantastic baked cinnamony apple pancake and their German pancake (the Dutch baby is the small version), as well as their omelets. Their "chocolate chippies", the pancakes made with chocolate chips, are great, and you can get them in a full or half order. www.walkerbrosoph.com