Callebaut chocolate mousse at Ward’s House of Prime.
February is the
month of romance. Passionate pairs will opt for a secluded table for
two at a favorite restaurant, soft candlelight, a marvelous meal and,
of course, chocolate. Lots of chocolate. Here’s a look at some of
the most decadent cocoa offerings in the city — St. Valentine
Fleming’s Prime Steakhouse and Wine Bar
15665 W. Bluemound Road, Brookfield
Oh, the choices.
How about a chocolate soufflé, with a molten center of liquid
Callebaut semisweet chocolate? Homemade chocolate ice cream or
pistachio tuile cookies dripped with chocolate sauce, maybe? Of course
the latter pastry is light and wafer-thin, so it’s OK to have two.
Or even a ménages à tuile trois.
W27850 National Ave., Mukwonago
Wade is offering his Chocolate Guinness Cake, made with that fabled
Irish stout instead of ordinary water to give an extra-thick,
wonderfully rich flavoring. With its flourless chocolate cake
texturing, this milk chocolate ganache is augmented with a smooth
homemade creme anglaise. Wade suggests pairing this romantic marvel
with a snifter of Woodhouse Vintage Port, vintage 1995, or a Van Gogh
Double Espresso Vodka, served neat.
NSB Bar &
8649 N. Port Washington Road, Fox Point
Shore Bistro, NSB still presents one of Milwaukee’s most wonderfully
decadent delights. Chef Michael Wolf calls his Valentine’s Day
selection the "September 7 Cake," because that was the day
his baker devised this sponge cake recipe. The pastry uses
ultra-pasteurized heavy whipping cream, rich Belgian milk chocolate
and vanilla mousse layering inside, culminating in a lather of
chocolate mousse and garnished with a raspberry glaze.
W33013 Watertown Plank Road, Nashotah
Eckstaedt says it’s Valentine’s Day every day at the Red Circle,
with his ever-popular French-themed chocolate soufflé served
year-round. This simply elegant egg custard wonder is sprinkled with
powdered sugar and brought luxuriously warm to your table. Since each
soufflé is made to order, wait staff alerts the kitchen prior to
dinner. Just like falling in love, such timing is everything.
4313 W. River Lane, Brown Deer
dreams with the perfect slice of chef Mike Kusch’s raspberry
cheesecake, slathered with scrumptious Belgian semisweet chocolate
sauce. Check with the barman for suggestions as to the perfect pairing
from his stash of special reserve beverages. But be forewarned —
after this combo, be prepared for whatever your lover fantasizes next.
Restaurant and Cellar
1818 N. Hubbard St., Milwaukee
Piedmontese is a true romance language, chef de cuisine Lisa
Kirkpatrick is considering going Northern Italian for the holiday,
featuring a chocolate shortbread. This delight features a nougat layer
tickled with pumpkin seeds and dried cherries, all layered in caramel
and covered with more indulgent chocolate. Kirkpatrick suggests
pairing that decadence with a homemade Nutella-like ice cream, in true
Gianduja-style, to emphasize its hazelnut sweetness. To find true
love, think of pairing with a sparkling Piedmont red, such as
Brachetto, and a cheese plate highlighted by the soft-ripened Robiola
from the Alpine foothills.
1547 N. Jackson St., Milwaukee
day, Sanford pulls out all the chocolate stops. Sous chef Justin
Aprahamian lays out his irresistibly flavorful German chocolate cake,
complemented by luxuriously rich cocoa nib ice cream. The first smooth
taste of this union is akin to slipping between Charmeuse lingerie
satin sheets. The final sensation is best left to the imagination.
Yes, oh, yes. Yes!
117 N. Jefferson St., Milwaukee
A real Turkish
delight, chef Hakan Tastepe’s white chocolate cake is triple-layered
with rum and heavy cream, topped with a plethora of raspberries and
blackberries. This yummy concoction is certain to earn more than one
kiss from your date.
House of Prime
540 E. Mason St., Milwaukee
Bard, "Tis that a mousse ye see before ye? Ah, my pretty,
sweetness is true." Or something to that effect. Chef Bill
Baumann’s Belgian Callebaut chocolate mousse, topped with freshly
whipped real cream and a homemade caramel sauce made with Myers’
Original Dark Rum from Jamaica, is guaranteed to be every poet’s
muse on Valentine’s Day.