Eating outside on unseasonably chilly days does not really lend itself to dessert because, by the time we’ve got to that part of the meal, the cold is really beginning to bite. Thankfully, it’s not long now until restaurants can reopen inside and, with that in mind, we’ve found ourselves reminiscing about some of the great desserts we’ve enjoyed.
Baba ‘like in Monte Carlo’
Alain Ducasse at The Dorchester, Mayfair, London
Fluffy, light sponge with rich, delicious Chantilly cream – for many this would be their ‘Desert Island dessert’. Choosing which rum you want drizzled over it only heightens the anticipation.
Bibendum chocolate soufflé, Madagascan vanilla ice cream
Claude Bosi at Bibendum, Chelsea, London
We’re possibly biased because it arrives stamped with the image of Bibendum but this glossy, light soufflé is rich and delicious. The smooth, silky ice cream proves the perfect match for the chocolate.
CORE by Clare Smyth, Notting Hill, London
Granted, it’s more a pre-dessert than a dessert but it’s a thing of beauty that works on every level. The apple and toffee scented mousse delivers a refreshing mix of sweet and sour flavours.
Macaron “Damien Hirst"
The Man Behind The Curtain, Leeds
Again, not strictly a dessert as this tray of delight is the kitchen’s final flourish and accompanies your espresso. A stunning array of colours and flavours that make you want to snatch it from the waiter’s hands and run off with it.
Sheep's yoghurt with blackberries and sorrel ice cream
Osip, Bruton, Somerset
Sweet, silky, crunchy and creamy. From perfectly ripe blackberries to a stunning sorrel ice cream and a beautifully smooth mousse, this was a dish that looked simple but had real depth.
Tropical fruit 'Miroir', golden mango, coconut, passion fruit, guava sorbet
Patrick Guilbaud, Dublin, Republic of Ireland
This had it all – a mix of textures and tastes and stunning fruit flavours. It was artistic, technically accomplished but, most importantly, a joy to eat.
Duck egg custard tart with poached rhubarb
Beach House, Oxwich, Wales
Light, creamy and with a lovely wobble – this provided an object lesson in how to make a custard tart. The true flavour of rhubarb really came through and the silky ice cream brought it all together.
Olive oil sponge, honey cremeux, lemon, Katy Rodger's yoghurt sorbet.
Cail Bruich, Glasgow, Scotland
This had balanced acidity and was smooth, creamy and with a distinct honey flavour – but it was the yoghurt sorbet that clinched it. Light, refreshing and creative.
Many of us tried our hand at baking during lockdown – and many of us subsequently concluded that there are some things best left to the professionals. We can’t wait to once again enjoy the stunning creations of all gifted pastry chefs across the land.
This year, the Michelin Guide is published in a digital format only, both on our website (UK and Republic of Ireland) and via the iOS app.