Everybody eats out of necessity, and not always just for the luxury. Basic meals come and go, as they simply provide fuel to make it to the next meal. But do most people simply consume their food and continue with their day, or do they stop to enjoy the sweeter things in life? Ask yourself this: do you eat to live, or live to eat? Nobody can honestly consider after-meal desserts a necessity in life, even if they possess a sweet tooth. Despite this, nature causes all creatures to prefer sweets over anything else. Should you have dessert with every meal? Not always. Can you have dessert any time you want, regardless of other factors like time and weather? Of course! Despite the increasingly cold weather approaching, one should never sacrifice desserts for uncontrollable reasons. By that notion, continue reading to see five warm desserts in the Greater Los Angeles area that I highly recommend consuming to warm up this fall.

5. The Pie Hole‘s Chocolate Crostada

When someone from across the world has heard of it, you can bet it has a huge following. Some businesses can take a while to gain momentum from the day they open. Others can really take off due to the people they know. When you know the right people, they spread the word, and you gain instant fame overnight. Leave it to The Pie Hole to gain so much notoriety that people from the eastern hemisphere have heard of it and travel to Los Angeles for the sole purpose of visiting them. Okay well perhaps people come to Los Angeles for other reasons too such as In N Out, but when out-of-towners have heard of The Pie Hole while locals have not, you can bet they have the goods. As their name suggests, The Pie Hole specializes in pies, both the sweet and savory kinds. While they also have beverages to accompany the pies such as coffee and tea, the people routinely come back for the pies, such as the Chocolate Crostada. For $5 a slice, you can get chocolate wasted with this decadent chocolate pie topped with sea salt and caramel. As a bonus, ask your server for a heated slice instead of right out of the cooler for a softer, heartier treat. When heated, it goes from a firm fudge texture to a soft cheesecake texture. Think your taste buds can handle this much chocolate? If so, continue reading…

4. Scott’s Restaurant & Bar‘s Chocolate Soufflé

An unwritten rule about Orange County exists: the further south you go, the richer the people appear. Orange County has no shortage of upscale pricey restaurants and other businesses, but as long as people remember the word “moderation,” then anyone can afford to dine at any of these fancy restaurants. If the occasion calls for it, go enjoy that fancy dinner with family, friends, or a significant other at a place like Scott’s Restaurant & Bar in Costa Mesa. Located across the street from the South Coast Plaza shopping center, Scott’s Restaurant represents the typical upscale American steak & seafood restaurant. With a menu stocked with various meats and seafood, Scott’s Restaurant presents succulent dishes with fresh local ingredients delivered daily. In addition to all the wonderful food found at Scott’s Restaurant, they have their own pastry chef that delicately crafts the dessert menu to include meal closers such as their Chocolate Soufflé. While this does not do anything different from the typical Chocolate Soufflé, this one does take a long time to slow bake, so order this early in the meal to give the kitchen ample time to prepare it. If you do so, you will discover the true joys of a properly prepared Chocolate Soufflé complete with hot chocolate sauce. The slow preparation of it gives it a warm and soft melt-in-your-mouth texture sure to give you a comforting feeling as you coat your tastebuds with all that chocolate goodness. Anyone dining at Scott’s Restaurant simply must make room for a Chocolate Soufflé at the end of the meal.

3. K.C. Branaghans‘ Bread Pudding

While people around the world recognize the concept of food, regional differences will cause certain foods and drinks to taste differently from one person to another. For example, something as simple as water can taste different to someone from the west coast compared to someone from the east coast. Areas with warmer climates may prefer cooler, refreshing treats such as ice cream, iced beverages, or citrus flavors. Areas with cooler climates may prefer warmer, heartier treats such as baked pastries, hot beverages, or “dark” flavors such as cocoa. The climate of Ireland represents a cooler climate, so we can expect warmer, heartier cuisines from them, something that K.C. Branaghan’s does well. For over seven years now, K.C. Branaghan’s has delighted both locals and travelers with their family-friendly Irish pub on Naples Island in Long Beach. Their menu offers Irish faire with an American twist, and they have customer favorites as well, such as their Bread Pudding. Very gooey, very moist, and very warm, this bread pudding has all the sweetness and melt-in-your-mouth texture that one would expect of any bread pudding. This bread pudding does not have raisins, allowing you to savor the soft bread pudding without having to worry about chewing or choking on raisins. Enjoy in moderation or share this with someone, because its richness cannot do much wonders for your belly.

2. The Olde Ship‘s Sticky Toffee Pudding

Cooler climates lend well to warm treats. When the weather outside gets chilly, people head indoors and seek out something warm to eat or drink to help their body warm up. Traditionally, people drank hot beverages like hot chocolate or tea, or ate hot foods like soups, stews, or warm desserts. As a country further north from the equator than the United States, England’s cool climate means that foreigners often consume warm food and drinks more often to acclimate to the temperature difference, while locals have already gotten used to the climate. This probably has little to do with the cuisine of England, but luckily England does have some delicious and unique foods, which you can find at The Olde Ship. This British pub brings a taste of the motherland to the west with their interior pub-like design, British menu, and traditional British spirits. Visitors love the food at The Olde Ship such as the Fish & Chips, Bangers, Corned Beef, and various pies. However, nearly all visitors cap off their meals with some Sticky Toffee Pudding. The photo does not do this dessert justice because of the vanilla custard cover. A steamed piece of a very moist sponge cake gets drizzled with toffee sauce, then smothered with vanilla custard. The consistency will then resemble American pudding because of how the cake absorbs the custard. You might end up devouring this so quickly that you will want to order a second. Refrain from ordering more, as one of these can fill you up really quick!

1. Peter’s Gourmade Grill‘s Sweet Potato Gooey’s

How do you get the word out about your business if you do not do any marketing? You have to deliver something so good that the customers will spread the word about you. In this modern time of internet marketing and social media, all business owners need to utilize all available tools to get the word out about their businesses. Consider that many of these marketing tools have no cost to using them other than time to set up the information. Once set up, the people will do the work as long as you provide something that the people will want to come back for, such as the memorable food at Peter’s Gourmade Grill in Tustin. As a hole-in-the-wall that many people can easily drive by without ever noticing it, Peter’s Gourmade Grill only focuses on what they do best: grilling up foods with a twist, and each twist varies between each menu item. Perhaps the people continually return to Peter’s for these twists, since not many other places have the same combinations that Peter’s offers. Take, for example, their Sweet Potato Gooey’s. Originally intended as a shared dessert, this massive pile of sweet potato fries gets dressed up with brown sugar, maple syrup, and toasted marshmallows. Has anyone else ever thought of this combination? Perhaps so, but definitely nowhere else in Southern California can you find something like this. At $7.25, this can treat an entire family, as I cannot conceive any sole person devouring an entire order in one sitting.


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