The nostalgia of birthday parties has been reinvented at Parm in Nolita. CHOW.com Contributing Editor Pervaiz Shallwani filed the following report.
It’s winter, but that doesn’t mean New Yorkers stop eating ice cream, especially at Parm where they have an ice cream cake that’s Carvel on steroids.
The two-month-old spot from the folks behind Torrissi is going for that “dinner with your Italian-American grandparents” kind of vibe. It’s got retro wallpaper, and is reviving middle-brow food like chicken parm in a diner setting.
Ice cream cake is one of those nostalgic desserts you remember from birthday parties -only if you’re like me it was never really that good.
The ice cream always seemed too hard, the flavors were usually boring and the cake-to-ice cream ratio was never really quite right.
Pastry chef Megan Fitzroy has reinvented the ice cream cake. She spent six weeks playing with everything from the ice cream’s texture to the cake’s height. It was originally seven inches tall, but was shortened to six because it wouldn’t stand on the plate.
Fitzroy starts by replacing the ice cream with gelato, which is creamier and softer. She makes each flavor and then freezes them in separate molds. Chocolate, strawberry and pistachio are the standard flavors, but Megan plans to create cakes with seasonal flavors soon.
Once the gelato is set, the flavors are stacked separately between layers of crumbled chocolate cookies and ganache.
The cake is frozen, and then iced with a thick layer of non-dairy whipped frosting similar to cool whip, piped with rosettes and sliced.
It’s served on a bed of chocolate cookie crumble to order, and finished with sprinkles and a maraschino cherry.
The creamy gelato and rich cake are evenly distributed in each bite. The sweetness will appeals to kids and adults alike. It’s more than enough for two people and a good way to end a meal that includes a plate of Eggplant Parmesan and a side of pasta salad.
Parm is located at 248 Mulberry Street between Prince and Spring streets.
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