BEST DESSERTS - 2010
We may never tire of ordering the Cosmos Chocolate Globe, a fixture on the Graves Hotel restaurant's menu since its earliest days. Not only is it a stunning dessert, it's also a piece of performance art. The server brings an austere chocolate sphere to the table, then douses it with warm chocolate sauce, which melts the globe's hollow shell to reveal a frozen core of cherry sorbet and bits of brandied cherry. The display is as exciting as watching a shooting star—except you can choose to see it again and again, just by placing an order. Pastry chef Khanh Tran, who made a name for herself at the late restaurants Auriga and Levain, supplements the Chocolate Globes with a changing selection of delights at Cosmos and its sister bar-restaurant, Bradstreet Craftshouse. Tran has a knack for tempering sweetness with sour and tart counterparts, as with her chic buttermilk panna cotta paired with a piercing passion-fruit sorbet. She also does wonders with delicate gelées, including a delightful lemon-thyme-basil gelée paired with avocado custard, and a Moscato gelée with fresh raspberries, lemon gelato, and a spritz of limeade soda. These desserts are good enough to be worth the hassle and cost of parking downtown—which is another way of saying that they're life-changing.