Dessert gets a bad rap. I mean, why must it always be at the end of the menu? Why do we feel guilty eating it after a meal? And why on Earth do we wait to eat dessert until after our meal? In the summertime, our family eats ice cream for dinner more than I would like to admit. Actually, I am quite proud to admit that. In honor of the dessert, I have some fun places to go to get it on. Dessert that is.
850 N. Milwaukee Ave., Vernon Hills | (224) 513-0300
This is why you need to do a dessert dinner this summer: a chocolate piñata. My friend Rosemary and her family of three more had the chocolate pinata and can attest to the amazing-ness of it all. (Yes, I know it’s not a real word but neither is chocolate piñata) The piñata is filled with mini churros, fresh fruit and served with yummy sauces but wait……the piñata itself is made of hollow chocolate. They split it between the four of them and still had some leftover so why not get a group of people together soon and crack open your own piñata? Read all about Mom-in-Chief Melissa’s family dining experience at Uncle Julio’s, and I previously recommended this restaurant in my list of Where to Eat Outdoors in Lake County.
La Luz Bakery
246 N. Cedar Lake Road, Round Lake | (847) 740-0303
I have heard around town that this place has the best Tres Leches cake. They have many other desserts to offer as well in this little, self-serve bakery.
34121 N. U.S. 45, Third Lake | (847) 543-1234
Three words: funnel cake explosion. This restaurant is also recommended in Little Lake County’s Best Party Catering in Lake County and as a trusted source for macaroni and cheese.
Create Your Own Cheesecake and Cheesesteak (C.Y.O.C)
2114 N. Green Bay Road, Waukegan | (847) 406-2962
2314 N. Greenbay Road, North Chicago | (847) 578-1111
I have been here before and if I lived closer, I would be here
weekly daily. You can choose from nineteen flavors of cheesecake laid right in front of you, ice cream shop style, with assorted toppings. Then you eat your cheesecake out of a cup. They have cheese steak and other amazing entrees but that isn’t what we are talking about here. Cheesecake-to-go is a good thing. Embrace it.
603 N. Milwaukee Ave., Libertyville | (847) 530-7172
Milwalky Trace has some really cool desserts like chocolate ganache (Tuscan olive oil, sea salt and ciabatta) and poached local rhubarb (lemon curd, lavender ice cream and meringue kisses). I have always wanted to be kissed by meringue, haven’t you? This place is also mentioned in Little Lake County’s Happy Hour Heaven: Where to Go Out With the Girls in Lake County.
921 Toft Ave., Antioch | (847) 838-0011
For the chocolate fondue made with french and Belgian chocolates, skip the fondue chain restaurant and head here. Rugan’s is also mentioned in Indie Eats: Antioch and Little Lake County’s Happy Hour Heaven: Where to Go Out With the Girls in Lake County.
3747 Grand Ave., Gurnee | (224) 637-3000
A great Indian/Nepali restaurant, the Himalayan has some really cool desserts to try out such as Rasmalai (homemade cheese patties in sweetened cream sauce) and Gulab Jamun (fried dough balls soaked in a sweet saffron syrup), which I have seen made before and have heard is really yummy.
293 E. Illinois Road, Lake Forest | (847) 735-9235
100 E. Station St., Barrington | (847) 277-1027
Francesca’s has four desserts on their menu which are very unique but also completely yummy. I am all over the vanilla creme brulee. When it isn’t the cream puffs with warm pistachio gelato and chocolate sauce. Francesca’s Intimo is one of Little Lake County’s Fan Favorites: Best Outdoor Dining.
You have no excuses to not eat dessert for dinner now. Tell me about your favorite, unique dessert places!