Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Comet Coffee's Mousse Cakes: Gluten-Free Tortes With Distinctive Fruit Fillings

Posted By on Tue, Oct 21, 2014 at 10:00 AM

Welcome to Sugar High, a series devoted solely to spotlighting the best ways to sate a sweet tooth in St. Louis. We'll sample the best the city has to offer at restaurants, bakeries and holes-in-the-wall, and provide some insight on how these confections are made along the way.

Comet Coffee's flourless chocolate-raspberry torte. | Photos by Mabel Suen
  • Comet Coffee's flourless chocolate-raspberry torte. | Photos by Mabel Suen

Since opening in August 2012, Comet Coffee (5708 Oakland; 314-932-7770) has offered up tasty little counterparts to pair with its meticulously hand-brewed, single-origin coffee roasts from around the globe -- everything from sweet breakfast treats to croissants stuffed with Salume Beddu meats. During weekends, however, visitors can look forward to something a touch more decadent to go with that blissful cup of joe: slices of light and airy mousse cake stacked with rich layers of carefully prepared fillings.

Co-owner and pastry chef Stephanie Fischer received formal culinary training just around the corner at Forest Park Community College and exercises her skills daily at Comet's self-proclaimed "microbakery." While co-owner and partner Mark Attwood mans the caffeine headquarters in the front of the house, Fischer preps small from-scratch batches of beautiful baked goods in back.

Peanut-butter, concord-grape flourless torte.
  • Peanut-butter, concord-grape flourless torte.

The base of her gluten-free tortes utilize nut flours -- almond, hazelnut or pistachio, for instance -- to make up a foundation of sponge cake on which delicate fillings can stand. Each slice can feature up to ten layers of components that play with a variety of appetizing textures, depending on Fischer's whim: luscious fruit-infused mousse, chopped caramelized nuts, chocolate ganache and more. The exterior of the cake gets a decorative shell of artfully piped jaconde to lend a finishing touch.

Comet's cakes have featured everything from blackberry mascarpone and tiramisu combinations to an ever-popular chocolate raspberry. For fall, expect options such as pumpkin chai, caramel apple, and peanut butter concord grape to celebrate the fruits of the season. Each slice's cool and creamy fillings pair especially well with the house cappuccino for a special weekends-only retreat.

Grab a slice to go with a cup of coffee or espresso.
  • Grab a slice to go with a cup of coffee or espresso.

Previously on Sugar High: - Whisk's Apple-Cinnamon "Pop Tartlets" - The London Tea Room's Blueberry-Lemon Cake - Corner 17's Fluffy Ice - The Fountain on Locust's "Banana Bourbon" Sundae - Vinnie's Pinwheel Baklava - Red Fox Baking & Catering's Lemon Tart - Sugarfire Smokehouse's Crack Pie - Russell on Macklind's Coconut Cake - The Kitchen Sink's Sweet Potato Fries - Giovanni's Kitchen's Panna Cotta Trio - Crepes Etc.'s Crepe Cake - Cafe Ventana's Beignets - Frida's Raspberry-Chocolate Avocado Mousse - India Palace's Gulab Jamun - Melt's "Violet Beauregarde" Waffle - Brevan's Patisserie's "Brendan" - Winslow's Home's Chocolate Cake with Espresso Meringue - La Patisserie Chouquette's Eclair - Black Bear Bakery's Raspberry Oat Bar - Gelateria's London Fog Gelato - 4 Seasons Bakery's German Cheesecake - Libertine's "Candy Bar" - Cleveland-Heath's Old Fashioned Cherry Pie - Schlafly Tap Room and Bottleworks' Sticky Toffee Pudding

We're always looking for some sweet ideas. E-mail the author at mabel.suen@riverfronttimes.com.

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