Legendary | Worth driving from anywhere
Review by: Michael Stern
“Have a mouse on the house,” said the girl behind the counter many years ago when I told her I was a first-time visitor to L.A. Burdick. As soon as I sunk my teeth into the dark chocolate ganache of this cute little cocoa creature, I knew that I had found candy heaven.
Long ago, it was Cissy Hicks, erstwile chef and proprietor at the Dorset Inn in Vermont, who suggested a detour to Walpole to experience this amazing chocolatier, and I’m sure glad I did. For chocolates, as well as for pastries and a cup of hot chocolate, there is no other place that delivers so much pure and perfect satisfaction.
The hot chocolate comes in three varieties: white, milk, and dark. The milk is liquid velvet, a chocolate daydream, so rich and fully satisfying. Dark hot chocolate, made from chocolate shavings and steamed milk, is a cocoa steamroller, the most potent chocolate food or drink imaginable. It is only sweet enough to round out the cocoa bean’s inexorable intensity. Even sipped in the tiniest increments, it is overwhelming … in the best possible way.
To go along with that hot chocolate (or coffee, which seems downright ghostly in contrast), there are fantastic pastries. Gugelhopf, the Austrian/Swiss bundt cake that is perfumed with lemon and vanilla, is as buttery as cake can be. The almonds and hazelnuts that go into Burdick’s classic Linzer torte are balanced by a slight haze of cloves. A cherry Danish is more delicate than most croissants; and the croissants seem like they might actually float off the plate.
All these wonders can, of course, be taken away. Or they can be enjoyed here in a pleasant little tea room with nicely-clothed tables topped with heavy brown paper.
If you like chocolate, do make this a road trip destination.
There are Burdicks in Boston and New York. The one in Walpole, New Hampshire, is what the management calls “home base.”
|Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
|Credit Cards Accepted