Did you know that the decadent, classic dessert dish Cherries Jubilee was created (and subsequently named) for the jubilee celebration of Queen Victoria in the 19th century? (Historians still disagree on whether it celebrated her Golden Jubilee in 1887 or the Diamond Jubilee in 1897.) And now you can have it in the year of Queen Elizabeth’s Diamond Jubilee! (Okay, maybe I really love typing the word “jubilee.”) A simple fruit dessert along the lines of the peach melba and pears Helena, the cherries jubilee consists of cherries flambéed in cherry-flavored liqueur and served over vanilla ice cream. It sounds rather simple, but the sweetness in the cherries is really drawn out by the cooking of the liqueur, making for a super sweet, hot-and-cold dessert that was all the rage at the end of the 19th century and has enough staying power to warrant its own national food holiday!
If you’re lucky, you can slip into the trendy West Village restaurant Perry St (located, appropriately, on Perry Street) and they’ll have their famous Cherries Jubilee on their dessert rotation. It’s usually listed as a part of their prix fixe menu, which includes an appetizer and a scrumptious entree along with a dessert. Appetizers like snapper sashimi and rice cracker crusted tuna help whet your appetite for high-quality, delicious dishes, and the entrees like butter poached lobster and potato gnocchi make you feel like you’re the royalty the cherries jubilee is celebrating. You can have the cherries poured on whatever flavor ice cream you like; go for the traditional vanilla, or try a bold flavor combination with cherries jubilee over pistachio ice cream. Your stomach will be full and happy after visiting this little bistro.
176 Perry St (between Washington St & West St)
“What with bread service, amuse, and two courses under our belts (plus the further feeling of alimentary volume provided by the bubbly vino), we were nearly satiated by the time the desserts arrived. Though your choices are limited to a molten chocolate cakelet with butter brickle ice cream, and a service of cherries jubilee wearing a round hat of meringue, both were voluminous and satisfying.”–Village Voice
Some reviews from Yelp.com:
“It’s their CHERRY JUBILEE – OMG, this dessert made me fall in love! Yes, ME loves it! At first, I questioned myself if I made the right choice but after tasting E’s chocolate mousse and tasting my dessert. WOOT WOOT! I did! Cherry Jubilee didn’t sound too exciting but me loves BING CHERRIES and that’s what they used! Not those fake tasting maraschino cherries! I cannot stop raving about the Cherry Jubilee – if it was a permanent item I would definitely come back here again!”–Ro N.
“My Sea Bass entree was great but not as amazing as I anticipated. my boyfriend’s Lobster was decadent and rich and very good. For dessert we opted for the Cherries Jubilee which was a favorite of ours.”–Gina D.
Make sure you check out the updated NYC Food Holidays Map to find this most recent holiday!