The Year in Food
The 2014 tastes we just couldn't stop thinking about
Top 10 Sweet Bites
1) MACARONS, LAV Whether in rainbow hues and flavors as they were at Sips & Sweets, filled with peaches in the summer, or made with chocolate, caramel, and nuts in the fall, I always wish for Janina O'Leary's delicate French treats by the truckload.
2) TEXAS WHISKEY PECAN CARAMEL GELATO, TEO I was not at all surprised when this uniquely Texas creation was voted one of the top five gelato flavors in the world in 2014.
3) DARK CHOCOLATE MOCHA, HIGH BREW COFFEE Frosty cans of High Brew were a big hit in the Grand Tasting tent at the Austin Food & Wine Festival; it's now the morning pick-me-up for this iced-coffee lover.
4) PEACH GINGER SHRUB, THE OLD SHRUBBERY SHOP This refreshing sparkler from the Green Corn Project party was my other favorite local beverage discovery of the year. Just add the syrup to sparkling water and voilà, it's a party!
5) FRENCH VANILLA RIBBON COOKIES, CURIOUS CONFECTIONS Baker Gemma Matherne only makes these thin, crisp wafers about once a month, so I buy several bags at a time and Do. Not. Share.
6) KING CAKES, EASY TIGER BAKE SHOP Rich, buttery, and filled with cinnamon sugar, David Norman's elegant crowns are my new favorite carnival-season pastry.
7) DARK CHOCOLATE GANACHE, WAYWARD CHOCOLAT Rick Bristow is back in business with a new version of his blissfully luxurious artisan chocolates. While your eyes are rolling back in your head, you won't even care that they're packed with antioxidants.
8) COURTESAN AU CHOCOLAT, ALAMO DRAFTHOUSE These delectable pastries starred in Wes Anderson's gleeful European romp, The Grand Budapest Hotel – Alamo chef Trish Eichelberger whipped them up for a feast.
9) TIE: CHOCOLATE CARAMEL ROASTED-PEANUT COOKIE BARS AND MACARONS, SUGAR MAMA'S EAST Both the caramel-filled cookie bar and the gold-dusted macaron of the month seduced me. I knew it would be dangerous having Olivia O'Neal's shop in my 'hood.
10) MEYER LEMON MOUSSE, ODD DUCK The only problem with this heavenly concoction was that I had to share it with the other people at my table each time I ordered it!