The Dark Side of Dessert

by Insiders Dunedin

On Thursday the 3rd of July, local cafe Kiki Beware and fashion label Moodie Tuesday joined forces with Chef Gianpaolo Grazioli of Auckland’s Giapo Ice Cream to create a very special one night only event. Grazioli has a simple mission - make the world’s best ice cream. He sells an astonishing 5000+ ice creams a week from his Queen Street shop front, so is getting plenty of practice. 

The theme for the evening was ‘The Dark Side of Dessert.' The colour black is synonymous with Dunedin; the gothic city is home to a number of artists, designers and creatives who heavily utilise this colour in their palette; Kiki Beware and Moodie Tuesday are examples of this. Grazioli interpreted the concept of 'The Dark Side of Dessert' in across three-courses of desserts. 

Moodie Tuesday designer & artist Jon Thom’s dark, moody and elegant large scale flower portraits hung on a black wall at Kiki. The  beautiful little cafe was packed but the perfect setting for the night. Each of the booths was candle lit and had an orchid in an amber jar. The venue looked very classy in this low-light and we could have been mistaken for being in a New York bar. 

Grazioli and the team created an evening that played on all the guests senses. The opening course set the tone for the evening. The bench top was lined with plates as chefs delicately placed a sprig of calendula on each dish. A central chocolate tart tower filled with strawberry coulis, chocolate and Laphroaig ganache, was surrounded by a moat of a vibrant mandarin gel. Finally, the dessert was topped off with squid ink spaghetti and little crunchy chocolate puffs. Led Zeppelin 'Whole Lotta Love' soared in the background as the wait staff brought out the guests first courses. 

The second dish 'Moodie Vanilla' was presented in a white chocolate cone, each cone was painstakingly covered in slices of olives. A disc of chocolate that had small impressions it to replicate the moon's craters perched on top of the cut cones. The cones were sprinkled with a light dusting of silver and coal dust. Granzioli's sense of humour shone through, in this dish, he wanted us to think we were eating vanilla however the what we actually were tasting was the combination of olives, capsicum, star anise, pepper and cardamom. Tom Waits' "Little Drop of Poison' grizzled over the sound system in the background. 

The final dish titled 'Danubio' was a re-worked affogato. The outside of a cappuccino cup was coated in toasted nuts and left to cool then filled with an exquisite vanilla ice cream accompanied by espresso, frothed milk and biscuit crumbs to top it off. Strauss' Blue Danube Waltz boomed as the last dish was sent out, this was accompanied by a time lapse by a New Zealander photographer of the moon rising and a neat glass of Laphroaig. A brilliant way to finish a great night. 


Submitted by Joshua Jeffery


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