In the throes of the 21st-century social media craze, information and ideas seem to be figuratively and literally at everyone’s fingertips. Browsing a restaurant’s Instagram account has become a better way to find new restaurants than looking at the Zagat guide.
Equipped with a mouthwatering Instagram, Val’s Cheesecakes provides the perfect pit stop to satisfy everyone’s sweet tooth. The tiny blue house recalls a to-go ice cream shop, where two window-side menus feature the current cheesecake flavors.
The website even features an option to order a full cheesecake online, only 48 hours in advance, for the perfect birthday celebration.
Though the Maple Avenue bakery offers limited parking, side streets allow for more parking with a short walk. If the weather permits, barstools along the outside bar and tables with chairs allow visitors to eat their creamy dessert immediately. Though the ambiance of the outside seating is the street, the proximity to downtown Dallas in the Oak Lawn area makes up for this urban setting.
Behind the window, the manager, Melissa, enthusiastically describes the different cheesecake flavors. The bakery serves their cheesecakes by the slice ($7) or in mason jars ($6). The Mason jar serving is smaller, but the customer can keep the mini jar to repurpose.
The bakery joint cleverly names several cheesecake flavors after nearby streets, giving the bakery a distinctly Dallas flavor. I tried Lemmon Avenue and Lovers Lane.
Lemmon Avenue features the signature cheesecake with a lemon-poppy seed crust and lemon curd drizzled over the top. The tartness of the curd balanced out the sweet creaminess of the cake. This piece, a part of a larger cake, was not too rich, but could be finished in one sitting.
I ordered the Lovers Lane in one of the mini Mason jars. The jar’s latch top ensures freshness, but though cute, the jar makes eating the crumbly cake a mess. A Red Velvet crust with Red Velvet crumbs on the top makes every bite a complete sampling of the cake. The cake was moist and flavorful at the top, but the bottom of the jar became slightly mushy.
Val’s Cheesecakes can be found at Opening Bell Coffee and Ascension Coffee, both popular study spots for University of Dallas students.
If planning a home-cooked meal date night, pick up the adorable Mason jar cheesecakes to save time on dessert, because Val’s Cheesecakes are definitely a must try before leaving for the summer.
3906 Maple Ave.
Dallas, Texas 75219
Tuesday-Sunday from 12 p.m.-10 p.m.