The 2011 New England Dessert Showcase is a “must” event for anyone who loves sweets. Hosted by The Anthem Group on Saturday, September 17 at the Sheraton Boston Hotel, the event featured various premiere dessert exhibitors from around New England.
There were a million different ways to indulge my sweet tooth at this event. My first stop was the O’Sugar! Cakery table, designed by Rago Events, displaying an assortment of pastries and chocolates on a fantastical pink and orange spread of flowers, cupcake stands and Willy-Wonka-esque cakes. To taste were a variety of cake and cake pops in red velvet, strawberry shorcake, snickers, and carrot cake.
Emack & Bolio’s ice cream-toting car was as adorable as it was tasty. A sample of the Grasshopper Pie (Crème de Menthe liqueur, oreo cookies and chocolate flakes) had me wanting to go back for more. For the coffee lovers, the Minnies Mandelbrot Eastern European biscotti (softer than the Italian version) were divine.
The most prominent feature in the ballroom was the World’s Largest Cannoli, measuring 12 feet and weighing over 300 pounds –a collaboration between Anthem and Golden Cannoli Shells. Chart House served their Hot Chocolate Lava Cake, which includes a chocolate cake with molten center, made with Godiva Liqueur, vanilla ice cream, Heath bar crunch, and chocolate sauce. Konditor Meister offered cake, cheesecake, and streudel samples. Their tiered blue deluxe wedding cake, with white candy leaves and a jeweled top, set the standard for artful pastries. Finale, The Cake Spot, and Lilly's Bakery each presented a multitude of cheesecake, éclaires, cupcakes, and chocolate cake. Other great vendors included Batch ice cream, Boston Baking Co., and Whoopie Monster.
For the “un-guilty” pleasure were sweet and healthy BudiBar (gluten free organic dark chocolate macadamia nut chewy bar, with omega 3, antioxidants, and amino acids. The bars were delicious, and it was an added bonus knowing I was eating something beneficial to my health. KIND served up their popular nut, fruit, and honey bars, and Kueh served unique foreign-inspired pastries and sweet soups. One of my favorites of the day was Vision’s Sown’s Mother Nut's Original Almond Butter Cookies made with different combinations of quinoa flour, sprouted spring wheat flour, cinnamon, maple, and filled with chewy organic raisins, berries, or organic chocolate chips.
To ensure no one went hungry, Anthem lined the room with trays of pastries and desserts for wall-to-wall treats. The event ran smoothly, and vendors were friendly and informative. Each table provided advertisements for specials and where to find their products. By the end of the day I was completely stuffed and satisfied from the amazing samples, having gone back for seconds and, sometimes, thirds. Leftovers from the event were donated to Greater Boston homeless shelters and soup kitchens. Money collected from raffles and cannoli donations will be equally distributed to Anthem’s philanthropic partners. If you're looking to indulge from the best dessert vendors in town, this is the event to attend.