Restaurants with Extraordinary Desserts

Instead of our suggesting where you should go, this time we thought we’d turn the tables and ask people what their favorite places are to eat where the desserts are outstanding. Here are their personal recommendations: “Mise En Place (Wolfeboro, 569-5788) can rival any restaurant in New York that we would love,” Jane Ayers confessed in a rush of words. “When we are visiting our family in New Hampshire, we reserve a table there well ahead. We love their desserts, especially the Profiteroles with Chocolate Sauce and the Lemon Curd Tart topped with Fresh Berries. They are sinful but worth every pound!”

Seacoast resident Pamela Lindberg voted for the cheesecake at Three Chimneys Inn (Durham, 868-7800). “I’m a little bit of a connoisseur of cheesecakes since I always order them, and I absolutely am in awe of this one. It’s a quiet, cozy restaurant. They’ll tuck you in a nice little corner where you can have only a coffee and dessert if you wish, and they will never be impatient. The other cheesecake I will travel miles for is at the Bedford Village Inn (Bedford, 800-852-1166). The last one I had was a Chocolate Pumpkin Cheesecake with Cinnamon Whipped Cream, which was incredible.” Cable TV host of FYI New Hampshire, Marty Bove, also chimed in for the Bedford Village Inn desserts, saying “They make a classic Creme Brulée — the best south of Montreal.”

A relatively new restaurant on the scene, Aylmers Grill (Jaffrey, 532-4949) was at the top of several people’s lists. Evelyn Pearson of Temple enthusiastically reported, “I had Poached Pears in Wine there which was as good to eat as it was to look at. I never imagined fresh fruit could come out this way.”

In Peterborough, Acqua Bistro (Peterborough, 924-9340) also rated highly with everyone for their extraordinary desserts. The dessert chef, Lee Newton, apprenticed in Boston’s finer restaurants and told us, “I research, try the recipes, then modify them to my own taste. My version of warm chocolate cake really flies out of the kitchen! Not far behind is the Creme Brulé with Chocolate Dipped Macaroons.

People lean more towards a chocolate dessert.” Nancy Aldrich dines at Acqua Bistro often. She “loves the Pumpkin Cheesecake embellished with cranberries and nuts.” Beth Aponovich, New Hampshire artist and Hancock resident agrees, “My heart pounds faster when I see their Indian Pudding on the menu. They serve it with a wonderful Vanilla Bean Gelato. I also go to Michael Timothy’s (Nashua, 595-9334) quite often and as a dessert lover and baker really look forward to their sweets. They make a divine White Chocolate Creme Brulé, a Warm Chocolate Cake, and I also adore the Dessert Ravioli with Caramel Sauce.”

In the North Country, the Flying Moose Grill at Beal House Inn (Littleton, 444-2661) drew a rave review from world travelers and food lovers Sandy and Jim Dannis, who told us that the pastry chef/owner Catherine Powelek makes phenomenal desserts. “All their wine dinners are sold out months in advance. After these five-course extravaganzas, paired with appropriate wines, we still have room for her dessert! We wouldn’t miss it!” They say that great food is a way to win someone’s heart. Could we suggest that finishing with a great dessert is a way to get there faster? NH

Hillary Davis is the co-author of the Two Blondes Restaurant Guide to Southern New Hampshire.