There are moments in life when the world aligns in ways that can only be described as pure magic. These moments often come when sharing exquisite food prepared with the love of a truly passionate artisan in an intimate setting with lovely company.
One of our BlueCart teammates, Ashley, recently had such an experience when she received the thoughtful birthday gift of a ticket to the highly coveted Dominique Ansel Kitchen's U.P. dessert tasting series.
Ashley with Executive Pastry Chef Noah Carroll
If you are not familiar with Dominique Ansel, also known as the "Willy Wonka of New York City," you are probably familiar with his most famous whimsical pastry creation, the cronut, a hybrid croissant-doughnut delight. If not, welcome back from the island you were deserted on for the last several years, and get yourself to the bakery! Dominique Ansel Bakery is a unique bakery that believes time is a critical ingredient and thus creates pastries a la minute for each customer to enjoy them as they are meant to be.
Dominique Ansel continues to push boundaries with his innovative U.P. series which is an after-hours dessert tasting held in an intimate setting for 8 lucky people in the heart of the Dominique Ansel kingdom, the production kitchen. The U.P. series is a special project for the Dominique Ansel Bakery team who spend months painstakingly crafting the menu.
First Fine Dining Experience: a pastry inspired by Beef Wellington
"Everything was exceptional," gushed Ashley. "The setting was so personal, the menu was unbelievable, and the chefs genuinely cared to hear about each guest's experience with their 'firsts.'"
The current series based around major life "firsts" features pastries inspired by events in Dominique's life such as first word, first kiss, first time living on your own, first heartbreak, first job, first fine dining experiences, first dance, and the next first. Each exquisite dessert was paired with an equally exquisite drink in a menu that over 800 people a week try to get tickets to.
First Heartbreak: The surrounding rice paper was lit with a match and burned around in a circle
Prior to the event, each guest was asked what their first word was, and it was featured on their first word dessert. Ashley was born a true foodie as you can see!
First Word: Ashley's first word, "cake!"
"Every detail was carefully crafted, down to the balloons with a menu tucked inside that were tied to the stair railing and given to each guest when we left. Oh, and the duck fat chips they gave us on the way out. No words."
"If I could spend my money on anything," she said, "it would be perfect nights like this."