Friday, April 17, 2015

Off The Grid: The Creme Brûlée Cart

Creme Brûlée Cart on Urbanspoon
The Creme Brûlée Cart features creme brûlée from the fridge, sugar torched on site, and additional toppings on top. Watch them do it -- if there's just one person in the cart, they prepare it quickly and immediately after taking an order, instead of lining up multiple orders and calling out names. That was the procedure at Off The Grid in El Cerrito during my trip in early 2015-April.

It wasn't clear to me that the toppings would be on top since the ingredients are simply listed after the name. The website says it more clearly.

Sweet Southern Lady ($6?) Vanilla bean creme brûlée torched to perfection and topped with candied pecans and bourbon caramel drizzle
  • You get a small but fairly deep cup of cream, and with the Sweet Southern Lady you can see quite a bit of the tiny black vanilla beans in the cream, though most seemed to have settled on the bottom.
  • Didn't really see how well they torched the sugar, but I didn't get any burnt taste, so it must have been at least okay.
  • Remember to dig deep to get cream with your topping, and scoop inward from the edge to avoid toppings escaping.
  • What is tasty here isn't a creme brulee per se, but the pecans and caramel drizzle. That dominates the flavour until you run out of them (which you will if you don't dig deep with each spoonful).
    • Translation: "Did I just spend $6 for a tablespoon of pecans?"
  • Price for portion is reasonable, especially considering food carts tend to be pricier but you don't have to pay tax.
Since the topping is on top, you basically get cream plus toppings and you would really have to pay attention to taste any caramelized sugar crust. And since the cream was still cool to cold, this dessert came across sort of like a big scoop of ice cream with extra toppings. But obviously it is less sexy to run "just an ice cream truck".

If you really like them, make sure to look into their "buy 10 and get the next one FREE offer".

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