Wednesday, July 26, 2006

Heaven Sent Desserts

Last Saturday my husband and I spent the day in San Diego having meals with various friends. The heat was beyond unbearable and none of the restaurants seemed to have air conditioning (or if they did it couldn't cope with the heat). After a hot lunch and dinner I knew I needed to sit down somewhere cool for dessert. We had passed a bakery before dinner called Heaven Sent Desserts that looked like it would fit the bill.

Parking was easy to find on the street and I was pleased to find that their air conditioning was far better than the other restaurants I had been to that day.

After looking over the desserts in the glass case I had a feeling that I wasn't going to be blown away. The prices ranged from $2-$8 for items such as a slice of cake, bread pudding, or a single macaroon.

My favorite desserts are tarts, cookies, brownies/bars, and other homey desserts rather than cakes and puddings. It just so happens that Heaven Sent Desserts had mostly cakes that night. They did have a lemon curd tart that looked good and one of my friends ordered the apple pie/tartlet. I decided just to order a sundried cranberry coconut macaroon ($2). My husband split their New Orlean's Style Bourbon bread pudding which comes with vanilla ice cream with another friend.

Since I'm not a fan of bread pudding I just took my husband's word on how it tasted. He said it wasn't bad but not the best he's had (but then again, my mom makes a killer bread pudding so he has high standards now).

Sundried Cranberry Coconut Macaroon
I tried eating my macaroon but it was so dry and tasteless that I couldn't even finish it. A macaroon should be moist and flavorful. It's a very simple dessert to make so I was disappointed that one of their smallest items wasn't really edible.

Dutch Apple Pie
The Dutch apple pie on the other hand wasn't bad. The crust was crisp and the streusel was acceptable. However, it still didn't "wow" me. To be honest with you, I'm so tired of going to bakeries or dessert restaurants and being disappointed with what I ordered. While it doesn't matter so much for $2 I really hate paying up to $10 for a dessert plate only to leave unsatisfied.

Another local dessert spot is Extraordinary Desserts. However, I mostly go there for the atmosphere (and tea!). I was hoping Heaven Sent Desserts would be an additional San Diego option for dessert but it just isn't worth the drive down to North Park. If you're vegan it might be worth the trip for you. They have several vegan desserts available on their menu.

I try to visit an eatery more than once before writing a review but since it takes between 40 minutes and 2 hours to get to San Diego (yes, it took 2 hours this past weekend) I am usually only able to visit San Diego eateries once.

So, just because I wasn't impressed with their desserts, that doesn't mean you shouldn't go to Heaven Sent Desserts. The owner is a former air force servicemember and I do feel that it's important to support people who volunteer(ed) for the military whenever you can.

If you need a break from the heat or just a quiet place to catch up with a friend I think this place is perfectly suitable. They have coffee, ice cream, and other drinks in case you're not in the mood for dessert. As mentioned in Alice's review, they have adorable coffee cups. (Side note: it's funny because I didn't realize it was the same dessert place that Alice had reviewed until after I left. I think her review was very accurate.)

Heaven Sent Desserts
3001 University Ave.
corner of 30th St.


Rorie said...

Well, I've heard mostly that this place is mediocre at best. And I'm completely turned off by their use of shortening instead of butter, that's just cheap (maybe explaining the $2 desserts?)If I'm going to waste the calories on dessert it better be worth my while, dammit! You & M. should check out Just Fabulous in Kensington for another dessert option and scenery change from Extraordinary Desserts .... food for thought.

kitchenmage said...

But they lookso pretty! I hate it when sweets have better looks than taste.

john66661 said...

I am just curious why do you think it's important to support people who volunteer(ed) for the military whenever you can. Shouldn't be everybody supported in the same way independently how what is former job was. Every profession has the same importance for our everyday life. I don't see anything special in the military in comparison to doctor, accountant or anybody else.

Gourmetish said...

John, I see your point and I used to feel that way. However, now that I've seen upclose what a military service member (and their family) goes through during a time of war I think that it's important for people to put their money where their mouth is. If someone says they support our troops then they should actually support them however possible.

At this point I should mention that I am extremely liberal and do not personally support our administration or many practices of our military. However, I don't feel that's an appropriate subject for a food blog.

Also, John, I don't feel that every profession has the same importance in our everyday life. I think some are more important than others. A doctor's job is more important than a gift store clerk's job. I'm not saying the person is more important but a Dr. definitely does more good for the public than the person selling keychains.

I'm sorry you "don't see anything special in the military" in comparison to other jobs. Whether or not we agree with our administration, we are lucky that our military is volunteer and not drafted. Perhaps you are too young to know what it's like to be drafted and not have a choice?

I appreciate any comments like yours that politely question anything I've said in a post. However, I do want to limit non-food subjects to short comments rather long rants and I am one for long rants so I will stop now and spare you my ravings.

I'm sorry to anyone offended by my reply as I should probably just refrain from addressing non-food subjects on this site.

Thanks for checking out my blog, John! I hope I answered your question about my point of view and if you have any other questions on the subject please feel free to email me as I've gone on long enough! :)

(Same goes to anyone else who wants to comment on this subject. Please email me.)

Alice Q said...

Thanks for the vote of confidence on my "review" of Heaven Sent Kady (and the link). I went twice before reviewing it and I had a very similar experience to yours, as you note. I heard they are changing the buttercream recipe (hopefully to omit the shortening) so maybe that will help. I'm not rushing back though. I'm actually not a huge fan of Just Fabulous either. The desserts at Cafe Zinc knock the socks off of either of these places in my book!

Dianka said...

Hi My Friend!
I just love your posts. Life has been so crazy at work but I still manage to tear away for a few minutes and read my favorites =) I hope all is well with you. Next time I'm in the San Diego area I want to try that Extraordinary Desserts you talk about. Maybe we can meet up there! Please email me and tell me the answer I've been dying to know?! B or G??? I've been thinking of you.. hope all is well =)

Roger said...

Hmm...I'll have to take a peek this afternoon. I know this post is from 2006, but hey. Hopefully things have changed for the better at Heaven Sent. Besides, their "happy hour" special is $6 for desesrt+coffee. Not too big of a hit like the usual $10 plate!