Tisserie's Venezuelan Brownie: New York's Best
When you walk into Tisserie you're immediately confronted by long, shiny cases of baked goods, sandwiches, and pizzas, an array of stuff we see in many places all over New York. The two classically trained Venezuelan brothers who own Tisserie, Ronald and Morris Harrar, obviously subscribe to the "give the people what they want" school of food retailing.
But I'm going to save you the time and the money involved in trying everything in these cases. You can skip most of the fruity, creamy, or flaky things you see, and you can certainly skip the pizzas, which include one made of smoked turkey and pineapple. Smoked turkey and pineapple! What were they thinking?
So what is worth the money and the calories at Tisserie?
To paraphrase Bill Clinton's election strategy mantra, "It's the Venezuelan Chocolate, stupid." The brothers are Venezuelans who trained in Paris, so it makes sense that what they are going to stand out with is the stuff made with Venezuelan chocolate, like the 53% cacao Venezuelan brownie.
Until I spotted these beauties I had no idea the Venezuelans even made brownies that were distinct from brownies of other nations.
This Venezuelan brownie is essentially a three inch square of Venezuelan chocolate to the third power. What do I mean by that? Two inches of fudgy, just sweet enough chocolate deliciousness covers one inch of cakey, just sweet enough chocolate deliciousness. These three inches of fudgy, just sweet enough chocolate deliciousness are coated in a winey, dark chocolate glaze. The proverbial cherry on top of this Venezuelan chocolate to the third power is two pecan halves.
This baby is $3.75 and worth every penny and calorie. The conventional brownie at Tisserie is a little sweet for my taste, but the triple chocolate chip cookie is essentially a squashed, vaguely round version of the Venezuelan brownie minus the glaze.