From Oct. 9 to 15, downtown L.A. will be enlivened with sugar, spice and all things nice. For the first time ever, Los Angeles is hosting its very own Dessert Week. Twenty-five selected vendors will be providing special offers and discounts throughout the week. Vendors include large chains, as well as quintessential L.A. establishments like Saffron and Rose, Diddy Riese and Randy’s Donuts.
Dessert Week was founded by Daniel Amitin, with the hope to celebrate some of country’s favorite foods. According to USA Today, 40 percent of Americans ate dessert after meals at least twice a week in 2013, a 4 percent increase from three years prior.
However, this may be due to the increased popularity of non-traditional sweet shops. Snacks and items such as bubble tea, acai bowls and frozen yogurt have redefined the way millennials consume desserts. They may not be eating traditional pastries but they still have the same sweet tooth. Dessert Week brings back traditions of ice cream, cookies, and cake, with a special Californian twist.
At first glance, dessert doesn’t seem like a large part of the Los Angeles food scene. Los Angeles has been recognized (and mocked) for its kale-loving, juice squeezed and health conscious nature. Yet it is also home to a wide array of traditional dessert establishments. For example, Doughboys Cafe and Bakery was on Fodor’s “America’s 20 Best Dessert Spots” list and Sprinkles Cupcakes had its beginnings in Beverly Hills. Dessert Week hopes to highlight such gems that are sometimes forgotten amongst the whirlwind of Whole Foods and acai.
One of the vendors, Saffron and Rose, is a Persian bakery located in Little Tehran. This parlor was originally a small, mom and pop ice cream parlor, founded by Kashani-Rafye, an Iranian immigrant, in 1974. Saffron and Rose has now evolved to becomes one of the largest producers of Persian ice cream in the country. Carrying on the tradition of hospitality that the parlor was founded on, his family forges individual connections with his customers, and maintain the blend of Persian and American traditions. In contrast, since its start in 2005, the popular chain, Sprinkles Cupcakes has established its name, with more than 20 locations across the country. The quintessential cupcakery, The Washington Post says “most cupcake bakeries take their inspiration from Sprinkles.” Dessert Week provides participants with a wide array of different locations, sizes and types of dessert restaurants. They aim to please customers with a variety of different tastes and preferences.
Many of the top 25 selected vendors are in close proximity to USC Campus. Cream is practically on campus, located next to the University Gateway Apartments. CoolHaus in Culver City is easily accessible by the Metro Expo Line. The Pie Hole, Ice Cream Lab and Gelateria Uli are all within five miles of campus, and are in close proximity of each other. Use the hashtag #DessertLA or #UDessertThis, for a chance to be featured on the Dessert LA site.
Dessert Week will culminate with a fair in Pershing Square on Oct. 15, where all the selected vendors will come together to celebrate all things sweet. A limited number of tickets are available, $15 general admission and $25, for VIP. Otherwise, grab a few friends, order an uber and have own dessert tour of L.A.