A new Princess Street favourite: Spin Dessert Café

By Megan Cui

Already a veteran of the dessert-café game, Spin Dessert found a new home on 260 Princess St. for the delicious fare and urban chic aesthetics of its original Toronto venue. A little different from its neighbor’s traditional design scheme, Spin’s most attractive feature is its open concept design. The first level is split up by demi-stairs into levels. The elevated section in the back has a smattering of Parisian café tables that’s a nice alternative to the plushier, banquette seating arrangement at the front of the store. Take another look and you’ll notice there’s an entire basement level that’s visible from above through a transparent balcony. Exposed pipes cap off an atmosphere of cozy sophistication.

I set my mind to eating the biggest, baddest thing on the menu and thought my larger-than-life appetite could handle it. It also doesn’t hurt, certainly, that the workings of the bakery and espresso bar are on full exhibition and the selection of in-house cakes behind their shiny glass displays speak for themselves. We ordered “Baby It’s Cold Outside,” which is one of many tempting options amongst the January Red Velvet promotion. It’s a red velvet cake smothered in red velvet ice cream, white chocolate shavings and whipped cream. I was worried the cake would drown in the ruby sea of liquid velvet but it held its own—super moist and unbelievably rich in cream cheese flavor. Next up was the interesting “On the Floor:” pistachio ice cream on waffles might be intimidating to some, but it was something I needed to try.

It was unconventionally savory and I commend Spin Dessert for venturing outside of the box. Pistachio ice cream is great for having a salty bite that can pull ice cream’s usual sweetness into a new direction. Unfortunately, Spin Dessert’s rendition fell a little short and offered an ice cream that didn’t taste too different from a traditional vanilla-based ice cream. It was a little nuttier and still creamy with generous chunks of pistachio nuts.

To wash it all down, I ordered a chai latte but ended up clutching to my iced water for the most part to cope with so much ice cream.

I have mixed emotions about Spin Dessert. The ingredients are amazing so all the waffles, ice creams and crepes taste flawless, yet there’s something left to be desired in terms of originality and diversity of flavors to keep me coming back. It would be more exciting to see less traditional desserts to match Spin’s modern aesthetic.

Spin though does offer a savory crepe selection and an all day breakfast menu which I have yet to try.

The portions are a bit excessive so I recommend going to Spin Dessert with lots of company, a big appetite and a sweet tooth. For a moderate dessert lover like myself, it was a great day for new experiences, but I’ll definitely prepare my stomach before my second visit.

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