First and foremost, this post is inspired by and dedicated to @ratingsharplesdessert (RSD), a force of nature without which my dining experience would be a shell of what it is.
Without further ado, I will give my hot takes on some of Sharples’ most loved and most delicious offerings, their desserts.
OREO STUFFED COOKIE BROWNIE
A crunchy Oreo sandwiched between a moist brownie and a chewy cookie. She talks a big talk, and successfully walks the walk. This was the dessert that made me realize the next 4 years would be ok. These bad boys are easy to sneak into your pocket and last for a long time, keeping you happily sugared up for the week. Is it out of this world? No, but it delivers on a pretty big promise by tasting exactly as it sounds.
Final Rating: 8/10
SWAT VOTES CUPCAKE
Good message, mediocre execution. The decoration was an edible paper situation that was visually great but poor in terms of mouth-feel (yes, I’m going full Charles Boyle for this post). I felt it lacked flavour and body, it was all style and not much substance. However, this dessert represents so much more than a mouthful of cake, it represents a pivotal point in American history, so, while it tasted like a 3/10, I will give it points for the celebration of democracy.
Final Rating: 5/10
PUMPKIN SPICE CAKE
I could write a review singing my praises for this cake, I could tell tales of its heavenly texture, flavour, and memorability, but nothing I’d write could capture this culinary experience better than @nattletree’s comment under its RSD post: ”At the point at which we have pumpkin spice lattes, pumpkin spice pop tarts, and pumpkin spice tampons, this humble gourd risks being over-commodified in the name of capitalism. This cake reminded me that just because something is popular, doesn’t mean it’s basic — or rather, that basicness shall not be avoided in the name of deliciousness. It’s a cliche to say a sunset is beautiful or that cake is good, but both things are true. I choose to uncomplicatedly like things, to watch sunsets with friends, and to enjoy this cake in their company.”
Final Rating: 10/10
RASPBERRY OAT BAR
I’m a chocolate lover, so I had never been moved to try what looked to me like a Starbucks snack. However, my friend was absolutely obsessed with these bars to the point that she enlisted a horde of people to collect extras for her. After hearing her review and seeing the pure joy she experienced when it appeared on the dash (the online menu for the week), I finally allowed curiosity to overpower my disinterest, tried one and… it was fine. Nothing to write home about personally, but I guess if you’re into fruity desserts it could be a good move.
5/10 6/10 (+ 1 in honour of my obsessed friend)
RED VELVET COOKIE
Not only do I adore chocolate, I am also a purist, which makes me skeptical of anything that contains the charlatan better known as white chocolate. Seeing these cookies made me raise an eyebrow, but I wanted something sweet so I decided to give them a shot and wowza. I went back for seconds, then thirds, and if calories didn’t exist, I would have gone back again. If for some heinous reason I can’t make it to Sharples on a red velvet cookie day, I will task a friend with retrieving one for me.
Final Rating: 9.5/10
This cake made for some excellent food porn, but unfortunately the taste did not live up to the visuals. The thick icing was so sweet that I couldn’t taste much else, and the cake itself was a bit on the dry side. Not terrible, but given the caliber of Sharples desserts, certainly not up to snuff.
Final Rating: 5.5/10
CHOCOLATE PUDDING PARFAIT
As the very first dessert I indulged in at Swarthmore, I started my culinary journey with a bang. These pudding parfaits are deliciously rich, creamy, and texturally balanced by the cookie crumble layered throughout. They have been there for me at ups, downs, and everything in between, always appearing when I need them most. One bite of these heavenly concoctions and my worries are soothed, truly a treat that I will suffer through my lactose intolerance for.
Final Rating: 9/10 (only losing points for my digestive dilemma)
*Many of the photos included are taken directly from RSD posts.