Lemon Meringa from Otto in NYC
I usually stick to a three-flavor gelato cup at Otto, but sometimes the seasonal desserts sound too good to pass up. The Lemon Meringa is a mound of Meyer lemon huckleberry swirl gelato atop a base of lemon spongecake and Meyer lemon curd all domed in a pristine beehive of toasted meringue. It's...it's so beautiful. But even more delicious than beautiful. So yeah. Eat this if you can. —Robyn Lee, Art Director
Panna Cotta at Osteria dell’Unione in Treiso, Italy
On a recent vacation to Piedmont (go there! It's beautiful!) we had a lovely meal at Osteria dell’Unione. Our B&B host suggested that the food was "like to go at the grandmama’s place," but as much as I miss my grandmothers' cooking, this was a different thing entirely. The gnocchi was unforgettable, but the dessert was perhaps the best panna cotta I've had, somehow both light and dense, intensely milky in flavor.—Maggie Hoffman, Senior Editor
Pain Con Gelato at A.B Biagi, NYC
A.B. Biagi, a cute Nolita ice cream shop that's quietly selling some of the city's best gelato, just started offering this pain con gelato, or as I like to think of it, an Italian whoopee pie. It's a fat disc of brioche custom baked by Bien Cuit, sliced in half, and stuffed with gelato. Okay, sure, you may have seen that before, but probably not a gelato-brioche sandwich that's squished in a waffle-iron-esque device, which toasts the crust and forms a solid wall of bread around the ice cream. That toasting makes all the difference: a warm, buttery ice cream sandwich that, when fresh, tastes like more than the sum of its parts.
The sandwich costs $8, which is expensive by any measure, but it's definitely built to share. Biagi also plans to offer the sandwich at Bien Cuit.—Max Falkowitz, National Editor
Olive Oil Cake with Roasted Grapes & Chocolate Ganache
It was great to get back into cake baking after a few years of developing weekly cookies and breakfast sweets. I really enjoyed the Texas Sheet Cake I made this month, but this olive oil cake won my heart for its uniqueness.
The olive oil roasted grapes are delicious on their own, and I love how they create little pops of sweetness that have a hint of savory. With the slightly rough cornmeal crumb and the shiny shell of bittersweet chocolate ganache, it's elegant and not-too-sweet; a cake that's as interesting as it is tasty.—Carrie Vasios Mullins, National Editor
Snap, Mallow, Pop! Ice Cream at Ample Hills, NYC
I ran the Brooklyn half marathon this past weekend, so, naturally, I felt obligated to make a trip to Ample Hills in Prospect Heights. Lucky for me they were scooping Snap, Mallow, Pop! —marshmallow ice cream with bits of crunchy Rice Krispies mixed in. It's hard to go wrong at Ample Hills, but I just may have discovered my new favorite.—Paul Cline, Developer