Sweet opportunities: the top dessert trends of 2015

Beyond all the traditions of the holiday season, December has always been a great time to take an inventory of the events and trends that shaped the entire year.

In this spirit, let’s take a look at some of the products and flavors that have been gaining popularity among dessert lovers—and will continue to drive orders as we turn the calendar to 2016.

Not just chocolate—BOLD chocolate

It’s no secret that chocolate remains the go to choice of so many dessert lovers. But today’s patrons want to dial up the drama. Examiner.com talks about the trend toward “bolder chocolate” in 2015, including deeper, darker and more bitter options.

You’ll find many ways to dazzle chocolate lovers with memorable offerings from Sweet Street. Our Molten Chocolate Cake features dark chocolate truffle that unleashes a rush of molten chocolate to a patron’s delight. Meanwhile, Sandy’s Amazing Chocolate Chunk Skillet Cookie takes the love of chocolate to a decadently unique place.

Deeply chocolate, enrobed in chocolate and filled with dark chocolate truffle. Serve wickedly warm, unleashing a rush of molten chocolate to your wild delight!

Deeply chocolate, enrobed in chocolate and filled with dark chocolate truffle. Serve wickedly warm, unleashing a rush of molten chocolate to your wild delight!

Bite-sized/miniature desserts

This is one trend that’s actually much longer than one year in the making. According to research from Datassential MenuTrends, miniature desserts have been steadily growing on menus since 2005.

You can leverage the popularity of smaller desserts by creatively menuing offerings from Sweet Street. For instance, our Blackberry Cabernet Individual Cheese is an individual cheesecake that could be offered for several guests to share. And our Bandes, such as the Minted Lemonade Bande, accommodate an array of slicing options to create bite-sized servings as well.

Honey, we love you

Firmenich, an innovative Flavor House and research company, has named honey as its flavor of the year for 2015. And while the distinction transcends desserts, it certainly presents a sweet opportunity to leverage the popularity of this familiar flavor.

Add honey appeal to your dessert menu with the Chocolate Peanut Butter Stack from Sweet Street, which is finished with crunchy honey roasted peanuts.

Whatever the next big dessert trend might be, you can bet that Sweet Street will be on top of it—providing gotta-have-it offerings for your patrons to enjoy.

Children’s author delights students with stories and songs

Reading, PA.  The laughs, cheers, stomps and claps reverberated throughout the gym at Glenside Elementary School.

There, Joe Consiglio sang his unique songs and told stories about sharks, dogs and an “evil, sinister and wicked” ice cream truck driver who just wouldn’t stop for kids on Sweet Street.

Consiglio, a children’s author, musician and ninth-grade teacher in Wilmington, Del., came to make the elementary students laugh, but he also urged them to write their own stories.

“All you have to do is start with a character, give that character a problem and go from there,” he said Wednesday afternoon.

The author of “Big Billy and the Ice Cream Truck That Wouldn’t Stop (Tales from Sweet Street)” picked up a guitar about 15 years ago and started writing music because he felt the typical children’s songs were not very relatable for kids.

Some of his songs, with lyrics like “are we there yet” and “don’t make me pull over” scored big laughs from the crowd, as did a ditty about sharks.

Another song about Pablo, a possessed dog that can’t bark but can sing lines from popular Tom Jones songs, drew similar laughter.

Consiglio mixed his songs and stories with a central message about writing.

“I’m here because I write, not because I’m a writer,” Consiglio said. “I enjoy writing. Most of what I write is terrible, and I want the kids to understand that writing is something you just do.

“You do it to express yourself, to communicate. You do it because you love it. It’s a process you just commit to and you can do this.”

There was also a Sweet Street connection Wednesday. Sandy Solmon, founder and CEO of Sweet Street Desserts, decided to sponsor the event after receiving a call from state Sen. Judy Schwank, a Ruscombmanor Township Democrat and a volunteer tutor at the school.

Each class is receiving a copy of the book, as well.

“I thought this was a match for things that are important to me and for Sweet Street,” Solmon said. “The kids are so excited to have an author in the school. If that excitement can continue on in their lives, what a gift we can give them.”

Consiglio’s Sweet Street story has a surprise ending that he hoped the kids would keep with them.

“If you do something nice, even to someone who doesn’t deserve it, you might change the world,” he said. “So try it out.”

Kasonei Wood, 8, a third-grader, said it was exciting to have a children’s author speak at the school.

“It made me want to write my own stories,” he said. “Every time when the ice cream truck driver drove away, that was kind of funny.”

Contact Matthew Nojiri: 610-371-5062 or mnojiri@readingeagle.com.

Joe Consiglio, author of "Big Billy and the Ice Cream Truck that Wouldn't Stop (Tales from Sweet Street),"

Reading Eagle: Bill Uhrich | Joe Consiglio, author of “Big Billy and the Ice Cream Truck that Wouldn’t Stop (Tales from Sweet Street),” visited Glenside Elementary School for an assembly Wednesday. In addition to the assembly, each class will receive one copy of this book.