Whisk Dessert Bar (724 Azalea Drive) is the latest brain child of Chef Blake Jackson, whose other ventures include Drake Catering and Prepared Nutrition, and who is the 2016 Food Prize Golden Fork Champion. Whisk is Chef Jackson’s first foray into the dessert space, and like his previous culinary experiments, he’s jumped into it head first. The menu for Whisk is extremely diverse, ranging from hand crafted cookies and gelato, to modern takes on classic pastries and more formal plated desserts.
Upon entering Whisk, situated in South Highlands off Azalea Drive, one’s eye will immediately be drawn to a plethora of sweet confections nestled under covered serving stands. The entirety of the open air establishment is consumed by natural light pouring in from the front wall of windows. A playlist featuring greatest hits from the likes of John Mayer and Dave Matthews plays in the background, building a real sense of place. While adding to the atmosphere, the light radiating in from outside coats the clear plexiglass window with a heavy glare, making the white calligraphy menu painted on it painfully difficult to read.
The house-made cookies in come traditional flavors such as snickerdoodle and something aptly named “death by chocolate.” I opt for something slightly more exotic, going for the the matcha and black sesame. The texture is firm, yet retains an element of chewiness that sets quality cookies apart from the break and bake variety you pick up at the grocery store. The core of the cookie is laced with chunks of soft white chocolate that add richness and depth to the overall experience. A couple more of these with a cool glass of milk would go down easy, no problem.
The real show stoppers here, however, are the plated desserts. Meant to be shared, these treats require patience on behalf of the consumer, as they have to be prepared in the back. There are options suited to every taste palate, starting with an updated take on an Italian classic, Tiramisu for Two. Lady Fingers made in house are built as pillars around a soft and creamy coffee syrup cake. There is the Drako Mille Feuille (pronounced mil foy), Whisk’s play on a French classic, where layers of caramel cream are sandwiched between light, airy puff pastry and topped with house caramel and something called black sea salt. The ode to the House of Slytherin is sure to impress some.
I settle for the Pecan Pavlova. A filling of velvety chantilly mascarpone cream is nestled inside a delicate meringue of pecan and egg whites. This is topped with diced cinnamon apples that’ve been reduced just enough to soften, yet retain their texture. The light, airiness of the meringue interacts extremely well with the creamy richness of the mascarpone. These consistencies, coupled with the robustness of the cinnamon apples and a dash of minced pecan result in an immensely flavorful taste experience. This dessert is unlike anything else you can find in Shreveport.
Whisk Dessert Bar sets out to be something different, to set itself apart from your run of the mill ice cream parlor or cupcake shop. It aims to present itself to the citizens of Shreveport as something new, different, and refreshing. It does well at accomplishing this. Additionally, with a variety of menu options at different price points, there is something to satisfy everyone here. For these reasons, I’ll be back.