On my weekly Sunday trip to the market I usually beeline for eggs and veggies, and pass up the aisle lined with artisanal bread and sinful pleasures like pastries, pies and cookies. I approached a booth – Sweet. – that had a small display of cheesecake slices and – my all-time favorite – crème brûlée. I came to an abrupt halt. I barely glanced at the cheesecake available for tasting and focused on the display of four jars of custard that stood in front of the vendor. He was offering samples – no, a tease – of each flavor. I had a taste of two varieties, the classic, and coffee-flavored crème brûlée. The classic was wonderfully smooth with a rich, creamy texture that lingered on my tongue, and the coffee-flavored custard was equally delicious, smooth and full of silky goodness. He also had a chocolate and maybe a fruit flavored variety but I don’t recall. I bought one each of the classic and coffee flavor. A little quilted, four ounce jar costs $5. The man who sold them to me was quite sweet.
I waited until after dinner to have the classic crème brûlée. The caramel layer had a pleasing crackle even after having sat in the refrigerator all day. The scent of vanilla was heavenly and the every spoonful exploded with vanilla bean. I could see specks of vanilla in the bottom of the jar and it was not gritty at all. I really wanted to eat that second jar, but I can wait. The listing on Yelp shows samples of the custards and cheesecake. The coffee custard uses Blue Bottle Coffee Co. Hayes Valley Espresso.
The label lists all organic ingredients and their website: www.eggscreamheat.com. It also contains a link to Yelp that tells more about the business and a little background history of the owner, Rob Waddell which I found interesting (http://www.yelp.com/biz/sweet-san-raf...). His culinary career started as a prep cook in a senior community center, which gave him an understanding of the importance of food and how it affects individuals on a daily basis. Following that experience, he left to attend the CIA in Hyde Park. After graduating he worked for Wolfgang Puck, adopting Chef Puck's initiatives to support local, organic and humanly raised animals, then began developing his own recipes.
Something I read on the website that the vendor didn’t mention was that if you return eight of their containers, you will receive a free selection of your choice. I wish I had sampled his cheesecake, but all the more reason to visit his booth again. At this time it appears he is selling only at the Marin farmers’ market, Sundays only. I would have chatted him up a bit more, but I had DH and my sister in tow, and they were both ready to move on to our next destination.
Next week, I shop alone. Two jars down, six more to go.