Sometimes you just want to skip the main course and get right to dessert. If you're one of those with a sweet tooth, we’ve got you covered with Tasty Tuesday: A Dozen Autumn Treats in Lake County.
‘Tis the season to indulge in delectable delights that make it easier to cope with the shortened days and brisk temps of fall.
There’s something for everyone in Lake County, from chocolatey goodness to apple-flavored treats, bowls with a Polynesian flair, savory brownies, and seasonal sweet brew.
Here are a dozen autumn treats you can enjoy in Lake County in this installment of Tasty Tuesday.
Slice of Heaven
This one-of-a-kind, chocolate-inspired restaurant doesn’t only serve delicious desserts. They offer brunch every Sunday, put together an exquisite monthly Chefs Dinner, and have a wine selection that would appeal to any sommelier who walks through the door. But if it’s chocolate that you want, then it’s chocolate that you’ll get with the Slice of Heaven. The dark chocolate cake, filled with Valrhona Manjari ganache and buttercream, will satiate the cocoa craving of any chocoholic.
The Chocolate Sanctuary, 5101 Washington St., Gurnee
Pumpkin-Biscoff Salted Caramel
When you’re craving a something sweet without any guilt you should consider stopping into Sweet Home Gelato in downtown Libertyville. Their delicious treats have no cream or butter fat like traditional American ice cream. Instead, the smoother and denser substitute is made with whole milk give the treat a smooth texture and distinct flavor. The seasonally -appropriate Pumpkin-Biscoff Salted Caramel hits the spots.
Sweet Home Gelato, 518 N. Milwaukee Ave., Libertyville
Pressed: Peanut Butter/Vanilla Phase
Phase Three Brewing has captured what it’s like to enjoy a cup of coffee with a slice of peanut butter toast that has a hint of vanilla with their latest collaboration with Tugboat Coffee. The 12% ABV imperial porter is the latest in their series with the specialty coffee roaster. The flavorful brew has subtle hints of coffee, vanilla and peanut butter with a smooth finish.
Phase Three Brewing Company, 932 Donata Ct., Lake Zurich
Hand Spun Cotton Candy
Ma and Pa’s Candy is known for their large selection of hard to find and nostalgic candies. The Long Grove-based candy store has been local tradition since 1966 and is like a trip down Memory Lane with offerings from Airheads to Warheads. The sweet-tooth’s haven serves up fresh, hand spun cotton candy that is made onsite. The aromatic, melt in your mouth confection is available in a variety of unique flavors including birthday cake, pina colada and white citrus.
Ma and Pa’s Candy, 424 Robert Parker Coffin Rd., Long Grove
Oreo Cake Slice
Since 1930, the family has been baking quality products for all to enjoy. The Oreo Cake Slice has layers of chocolate cake and Oreo silk. The cake is then finished off with whipped cream and Oreo crumbs! It will make your tummy say, “Howdy!”
Lovin Oven Cakery, 455 Lake St., Antioch
Brown Bag Apple Pie
For nearly half a century, brown bag apple pies have been made locally. This dessert is made with fresh apples, real butter and no preservatives. The crunchy outer layer that the brown bag creates makes this delightful treat even more special. So grab a freshly baked pie or buy them frozen to enjoy them at your leisure.
Long Grove Confectionery Co., 114 Old McHenry Rd., Long Grove
Long Grove Confectionery Nut and Candy Factory Store, 581 Bonner Rd., Wauconda
Long Grove Confectionery Company, 333 Lexington Dr., Buffalo Grove
Butter Pecan Cannoli
This gem specializes in serving up the flaky-shelled, cream-filled Italian pastries known as cannoli. Tony works at perfecting his cannoli shells, creating some of the most excellent cannoli that you will ever get the chance to enjoy. ‘Tis the season as the Illinois Maker has introduced their new fall offering butter pecan cannoli. You can only get cannoli this good by stopping by their downtown Mundelein location.
Tony Cannoli, 460 N. Lake St., Mundelein
Sour Apple Lemonade
We are not sure if you ever had a drink that is described as “healing, refreshing and it has rhythm so it dances on your tongue?” If a beverage like this is what you’re looking for, look no further than downtown Waukegan just across the street from The Genesee Theatre to The Raw Juice Bar. The Sour Apple Lemonade is the perfect seasonal choice if you want to add raw juices in the colder months. With an entirely vegan menu, the location serves up different food specials based on the day of the week, a variety of smoothies and juice, along with shots of turmeric and ginger.
Raw Juice Bar, 202 N. Genesee St., Waukegan
Habanero Sea Salt Caramels
The autumn months are when the temperature starts to drop. At Uniquely Sweet in Grayslake, they have seemed to take turning up the heat to a whole new level. The Habanero Sea Salt Caramels are bite-sized squares of buttery caramel dipped in either milk or dark chocolate. These handmade delights are then sprinkled with habanero heat sea salt.
Uniquely Sweet, 888 Belvidere Rd., Unit 106, Grayslake
Banana Pudding Crunch Cake In the heart of downtown Zion is an establishment that offers up hometown comfort food in a cozy setting. Bailey’s Corner Pub is known by locals for their Friday Night Fish Fry that includes beer battered cod and fried catfish. A trip to this establishment would not be complete without indulging in one of their signature desserts. You’ll want to save room for the Banana Pudding Crunch Cake that is homemade with real bananas and vanilla wafers.
Bailey’s Corner Pub, 2723 Sheridan Rd., Zion
Chrissoulas is the creation of Chefs Nick and Theo, two brothers with strong roots in Libertyville. The two have over twenty years combined in the culinary industry and focus on modern dishes inspired by Greek and Mediterranean flavors. Their bread pudding is a great way to close any meal or a good reason to stop in just for dessert. Made with brioche and topped with a caramel sauce, peanuts, and vanilla ice cream, it offers a sweet and savory way to cleanse your palette.
Chrissoulas, 602 N. Milwaukee Ave., Libertyville
Barrel Aged Cake Double Pastry Stout
Lake County Libation Trail partner Half Day Brewing Company in Lincolnshire offers a unique selection of handcrafted beers. The brewpub offers a number of appetizers, entrees and desserts as part of their food menu. One of the many brews that they offer is the Barrel Aged Cake Double Pastry Stout. With overtures of chocolate mixed with hints of vanilla and coconut, the thick beverage leaves a big mouthfeel sprinkled in sweetness. The dark roasted grains saturated with more chocolate compliments the ubiquitous barrel character making this a unique treat.
Half Day Brewing Company, 200 Village Green S, Lincolnshire.
For more food options in the land of the lakes be sure to check out the Lake County Dining Guide.