Tequila Sun-prise

By Joe Sevier | Antoinette Bruno

By

Joe Sevier
Antoinette Bruno
Pastry Chef Anna Bolz's Tequila Sunrise: Grapefruit sorbet, buddha's hand soda, and pomegranate
Pastry Chef Anna Bolz's Tequila Sunrise: Grapefruit sorbet, buddha's hand soda, and pomegranate

Pastry chef at Per Se, Anna Bolz has taken inspiration from a classic cocktail—one more often bastardized by the last half-century of spring breakers than seen in fine dining—and made it into a dessert that we can’t stop thinking about: The Tequila Sunrise.

No stranger to cocktail-inspired sweets—her menu regularly features mimosa- and negroni-based desserts—Bolz took little time to consider when a cook presented her with the idea of pastri-fying the ombre classic. “It was inching toward mid-winter and I wanted something that would make people smile,” says Bolz. “The drink is super colorful and bright and I thought we could emulate that in a very visual way.”

“It was inching toward mid-winter and I wanted something that would make people smile”

But when she started plating, layering purée, granité, and siphoned soda, in delicate frost-patterned glasses she had been eager to use, she found it didn’t work. “You lost everything visually nuanced about the dessert, and you lost the beauty of the glass.” Determined, she eventually found a balance that let both dessert and glassware shine, realizing that sometimes it’s in the removal of certain elements that everything falls into place.

The final stand-out feature of Bolz’s dessert is the garnish: white chocolate–coated Pop Rocks. She came up with the idea when trying to translate the sensation of combining siphoned soda with Champagne granité, as she does for the mimosa dessert. The throwback candies give the dish a vibrancy and playfulness that’s indicative of Bolz’s cooking and take it from the land of forgotten cocktails to a haute dessert that doesn’t take itself too seriously.

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