I’ve been extremely excited about Dessert Castle ever since I heard that it was opening up between Spicy Ginger and MeetFresh out in the ANU side of town. I’ve always found that Canberra lacks in the dessert section, great at mod oz, ethnic foods, coffee and brekkie or brunch food but never great when it comes to sweets. Don’t get me wrong, there are some fantastic sweet joints out there like Flute Bakery, Autolyse, Ricardo’s, Dream Cuisine and etc but none of these places are open after dinner. Its impossible to have dinner and then head over to a place for sweets and coffee. So its nice to finally see a casual desserts and sweets joint open up close to the CBD.
From Dessert Castle’s opening night and information on their website and Facebook page, it looks like they will be offering more than just sweets. We got to try their signature burger, so I’m guessing there will be burgers at a minimum but if they’re doing burgers, I’m guessing they’ll do chips as well and I saw an image of pasta on their webpage!
More importantly, their desserts! It looks like they’ll be offering a range of cakes and sweets including tarts, cakes, slices and gluten free options too! While we were there we overheard the owner mentioning that they would consistently be changing their cake options. In the display cabinet there are four cakes of each type, once the four cakes of a particular type sells out, they’ll replace it with something new. I don’t think I saw it happening on the night but we were told that they had a limited selection as it was their first night. Seems like a very creative idea, with scope for lots of variety and change!
Outside of the cakes and tarts, Dessert Castle also offers frozen yoghurt, chocolates, hot drinks and coffee. According to their website, they’ll be offering cookies, macarons, waffles and brownies too!
Oh before talking about the food, I absolutely have to mention the butt chair! its literally the first thing you see when you enter the store. I had to take a picture of it, just couldn’t resist. Oh they also had these other massive face chairs that where like pods where you kind of sit inside it and it surrounds you but the butt chair is so much cooler!
Alrightie, less butt chairs more food talk.
So we ended up getting three cakes from their awesome selection. First up, the Salted caramel tart ($6.50). This was really nice. It was super dense and rich, full of caramel goodness. The salted caramel filling was really thick. It was strong in caramel flavours and actually had quite a bit of saltiness to it, this really helped balance out the sweetness of the caramel filling and the rich and chocolatey mousse on top. This cake was quite rich on its own but if enjoyed over a period of chatting or with a strong coffee, it would be absolutely perfect.
Second up, the Hazelnut and chocolate dome ($6.50). This was amazing! My favourite cake of the night and that’s saying something because I normally prefer anything over chocolate because I normally find it too rich and sickly sweet. This was pretty much a giant Ferrero Rocher. There was a heavily hazelnut mousse filling that was flavoursome but not too sweet. A thin chocolate cake base, a lovely rich chocolate ganache and to top it all off, crushed hazelnut bits along the side, which added lots of crunch and texture. Absolutely amazing! I’m definitely going back for more of these.
Our final cake for the night, a Raspberry and mango mousse ($6.50). This cake was delicious! Much lighter than the above two cakes and full of fruity flavours and freshness. The cake actually looks a little deceiving, the mousse part it completely white so I wasn’t expecting a super strong mango taste from that, but there was and it was great! The raspberry gelee top worked really well with the mango mousse and gave the cake great variety.
Here are some more of their cakes, I was kinda annoyed by this display cabinet, it was fogging up in the middle and even after wiping it away I couldn’t get a proper shot of all their fantastic cakes. I guess, at least we know that they are cooling their cakes properly! Anyways, heres the left half of the cabinet. The other side had the three cakes that we got and I think a tiramisu cake as well.
On to something savoury, Dessert Castle was handing our samples of their Signature burger, I’m not 100% sure how much this will cost but I did overhear that this was a baby version, so expect it to be bigger! The burger was really good. The meat was delicious and tender, seasoned with probably only salt and pepper to bring out its meaty goodness, but there could’ve been something else that I wasn’t able to taste. There was also a good amount of melted swiss cheese that kept up the moistness of the burger and finally a little bit of lettuce so that I feel that I’m not completely unhealthy. I really liked this burger and can’t wait to see their other savoury goodies.
Onwards to the Frozen yoghurt ($2.20 for 100 gram) So they have a self service style frozen yoghurt set up with a total of four machines and eight flavours, on the night they had chocolate, plain, cherry, pomegranate, taro, green tea, cookies and cream and nutella. I’m sure these offerings will change from time to time. I’m really happy they have taro! I’ve been looking all over Canberra for taro frozen yoghurt and nobody stocks it any more!! (Okay, I haven’t checked Noggi in Woden yet but that’s it!). They also have a good range of toppings including popping boba balls, cereals, gummies and chocolates.
At $2.20 for 100grams, its pretty decent, especially for Canberra where there are only a few self serve frozen yoghurt joints to start with. I think all this was only about ~$5.50. As for what I got, I went with taro and green tea! My two favourite flavours, when it comes to froyo, I like sticking with the old Asian classics, plain is nice too but I’m not a massive fan of chocolatey flavours.
I really liked the two flavours i got. The green tea was really good! It had a good strong matcha flavour to it and it wasn’t overly sweet. It was very mild in term of sweetness actually, which was a refreshing change to the super sweet green tea froyos. The taro was very interesting, very different to the usual taro flavour some froyos or milk teas. This was more like the flavour of cooked taro. The taro was also a lot sweeter than the green tea but still lovely.
Dessert Castle also offers a range of Chocolates ($2 each). I’m not sure if these chocolates are had in house or not but I’m going to assume so. I mean, if they’re getting their chocolates from some awesome chocolatiers, I assume they would probably advertise or promote it. Anyways, we didn’t have any chocolates on the night but we did get some take away!
They didn’t have their take away chocolate boxes ready so we got our chocolates in a cake box instead. Cute box, annoying to open and close, the poor waitress struggled with it for ages and kept apologising but I can see how it would be beneficial for cakes. It kinda of ensures that your cake doesn’t die or get damaged when they are putting the cake in or when you’re taking it out to enjoy!
Top to bottom, left to right: Lemon and lime white chocolate, dark chocolate truffle, white chocolate mushroom, nutty rum truffle, chocolate truffle, ANZAC, passionfruit, hazelnut, hazelnut praline mousse, peach, fudge and salted caramel. The peach one is upside down! It actually has a white chocolate top with musical notes on it it.
At first, I was picking a couple of flavours to take home. However, I somehow came home with all twelve flavours. I haven’t had them all yet, its only been a day since I got them! I think if I had all those chocolates on top of the cakes and goodies, I would probably be in a sugar coma right now! Nevertheless, the ones we have tried were really nice especially the ANZAC, if you like oats and ANZAC cookies, this is for you! The rest were awesomely chocolatey and delicious. Really affordable for $2 as well!
The sweets and food at Dessert Castle were really brilliant. I’m really happy to see a place like this open up in Canberra. If its late and you feel like sitting around and chatting to your friends after dinner, you don’t have to go to a bar or pub anymore. You can go get cake and frozen yoghurt instead! Its an easy walk from the city and quite affordable too, we probably got enough food for four people and it only cost about $40, $10 per person for a night, not bad. It was really good and we will be back to check out their savouries properly very soon!