Sugar Rush: Chocolate Ganache Cake at Quack's 43rd Street Bakery, Austin


[Photographs: Meredith Bethune]

Specializing in cupcakes, cookies, and bars, this old school Hyde Park bakery also successfully executes fancier desserts. One in particular stands out as a good choice for Austinites who don't want to cook on Valentine's Day: the Chocolate Ganache Cake. You can indulge in one piece ($3.29) by yourself or split it with that special someone. Go ahead and buy a whole cake ($25.50) if you'll be entertaining a crowd.

This dessert is really all about the ganache. The crumb is lighter than it looks, and it's not very heavy on the cocoa. Besides a pronounced earthiness, the actual cake is a bit flavorless, but that means it's the perfect carrier for the smooth ganache. The buttery chocolate, served chilled, immediately melts on your tongue after taking a bite. It's rich and refreshing at the same time.

Quack's carries this cake often, but this week it's decorated with white or pink buttercream hearts and the bottom edge is coated with white, pastel pink, and purple sprinkles for Valentine's Day. They're also carrying a huge variety of decorated shortbread cookies and special cupcakes. You can always count on Quack's to stock holiday treats.