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Eat Feature

Restaurants Where You Don't Have to Finish Your Meal to Get Dessert

Emily Flake

Eat Special Issue 2005

Stuff It City Paper’s Annual Guide to Filling Your Face

Get Stuffed The Restaurants A-Z

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Restaurants Where You Don't Have to Finish Your Meal to Get Dessert The continuing absence from our culinary landscape of a top-flight dessert restaurant is mystifying.... | By Richard Gorelick

Eat 2005

By Richard Gorelick | Posted 3/2/2005

The continuing absence from our culinary landscape of a top-flight dessert restaurant is mystifying. This is the place where everybody would go after the movies, after dinner at other places with crummy dessert menus, a place with homemade pies and ice cream and Irish coffee. In the meantime, there are some versatile cafés that welcome late-night dessert-only patrons.

Café Hon

We have no complaints about the Café Hon's toothsome homemade desserts--bread pudding with caramel sauce and fresh fruit pies. And the staff has no problem with us coming in just for dessert and coffee. But Café Hon is only open until 10 p.m. on weekends, earlier on weeknights, making post-movie feasting difficult.

Dangerously Delicious Pies

With reason, everybody loves Rodney Henry's real-ingredient pies--we're partial to the rhubarb, sweet potato, and lemon meringue--and its absence here would be glaring. But this neato little café shuts down very early, at 7 p.m. most nights. Cross your fingers for later hours.


The Mount Vernon location is ideally located for Center Stage and Peabody patrons wanting to continue the conversation. The brownie sundae always pleases, as do Donna's fruit tarts and terrific tiramisu.

Sofi's Crêpes

Here we go. If there's any place we can imagine as a future dessert empire, it's Sofi's. Sure, we'll miss this original little vest-pocket storefront, where we go after movies at the Charles, but we'd love to see hundreds of people pouring into a full-scale crêperie. When the weather's nice, little café tables are set up for enjoying these sweet and savory wonders. It'll do for now.

Vaccaro's Italian Pastry Shop

Now, you'd think this is it. The dessert place everyone loves, packed night after night with admirers. But Vaccaro's is only very good, not great. The cannoli stuffing never feels homemade; the gelati tends to be heavy. Timing is everything here; the lines can be very long and tables hard to come by.


The multiple-personality café stays open late for dessert. While the pastries need some fresh attention--they lack the panache of the restaurant's other offerings--the gelati is surprisingly fresh and silky.

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