A mouth-watering collection of refreshing treats to help you stay cool.
1. Mot Hai Ba’s Coconut-Lemongrass Panna Cotta
Chill out in the soothing atmosphere of this tiny Vietnamese restaurant with a bowl of their mood-lifting panna cotta. The subtle notes of coconut and lemongrass balance the tart, concentrated raspberry flavor of the accompanying sorbet. A chopped peanut topping provides just the right amount of crunch.
Mot Hai Ba, 6047 Lewis St., 972-638-7468, mothaibadallas.com
2. Melt’s Lemon Basil Sorbet
Kari Crowe’s bright yellow ice cream parlor is the perfect spot to savor summer flavors. Cheekily-named artisan flavors (such as Planet of the Grapes) rotate frequently, but the lemon-basil sorbet is a must-have if you can get your mitts on it. The mini-road trip to Fort Worth is worth it for the full experience, but Melt ice cream is also available at Urban Acres in Oak Cliff.
Melt, 954 W. Rosedale St., 817-886-8365, Melt's Facebook page
3. Rapscallion’s Chocolate Sheath Cake
Since opening in July, this Greenville Avenue hotspot has been serving up Southern dishes with modern twists to an elbow-to-elbow crowd. Their fried chicken draws an eager crowd, but so do their desserts. Their take on chocolate cake is layered with coconut cream cheese frosting, paired with a refreshing scoop of horchata ice cream. For hot days, their floats hit the spot. Try the Kentucky StandOff — Dr Pepper with bourbon ice cream, finished with chewy peanut brittle.
Rapscallion, 2023 Greenville Ave., 469-291-5660, dallasrapscallion.com
4. Uchi’s Fried Milk
It never feels like a notch above 70 degrees at the cool copper bar of this Austin-bred sushi spot, and intriguing dessert options abound. Pastry chef Andrew Lewis’ creations include olive gelato, peanut butter semifreddo and fried milk. Order the fried milk and indulge in iced milk sherbet, silky chocolate milk mousse, and toasted custard pillows. Don’t skip the cold sake.
Uchi, 2817 Maple Ave., 214-855-5454, uchirestaurants.com
5. Carnival Barker’s Ice Creams
You can’t do summer without ice cream (well, you can, but it would suck), so why not enjoy a scoop at one of the most unique ice cream joints in the city? Aaron Barker’s Oak Cliff location is now open, and favorite flavors like vanilla, chocolate and strawberry are available in addition to more unusual flavors that change according to Mr. Barker’s fancy. In the past, flavors such as Munchies (peanut butter ice cream with chocolate-covered potato chips) and Peaches and Cream have been big winners. The ice cream alchemist also offers delightful surprises such as ice cream sandwiches featuring treats made from Rice Krispies or Cinnamon Toast Crunch. Fun facts: you can spot Gizmo here, plus add bacon to anything for $1.
Carnival Barker's Ice Creams, 345 W. Jefferson Blvd., Carnival Barker's Facebook page
6. Lekka’s Banana Caramel Pecan Pie
This is some serious pie. It’s everything you love about banana pudding — except, uh, pudding — but better. Freshly whipped cream, banana slices, pecans, gooey, salted caramel and a top-secret Nilla wafer-esque crust will make you glad you stopped by.
Lekka, 17606 Preston Road, 972-735-8425, lekkashop.com
7. Spork’s Double Chocolate Cone
Created by chocolate visionary Katherine Clapner, Spork’s double chocolate ice cream is rich with pure cocoa flavor and a sprinkling of saltiness. You can order it up in milkshake, float or swirl form, but why mess with greatness? Savor the unadulterated, deep chocolate in a cone or cup.
Spork, 6110 Frankford Road, 972-930-0668, sporkdallas.com
8. Smoke’s Mescal Key Lime Pie
Dull winter days will have you dreaming of summery Key lime pie, so enjoy it now. One of the city’s best versions is at Smoke. You have to stab your way through impossibly high meringue to get at the tart, lime filling, so you may have to fortify yourself with a Woodshed margarita as well.
Smoke, 2408 Preston Road, 972-599-2222, smokerestaurant.com
9. Cake Bar’s Strawberry Cake
Celebrate the fact that you survived another work week by treating yourself to a slice of cake at Cake Bar. The strawberry cake, with its slathering of jam between layers, is one of the best choices. It’s moist and flavorful on its own, but you can pair any slice with a scoop of vanilla, chocolate, or butter pecan ice cream for extra indulgence.
Cake Bar, 3011 Gulden Lane No. 117, 972-684-5801, cakebardallas.com
10. Remedy’s Ice Cream Sundaes
The cure for summer heat lives at Remedy. In addition to seasonal sodas and a rotating selection of pies, Greenville Avenue’s modern twist on the soda fountain offers ice cream scoops and sundaes. You can’t go wrong with any choice, whether it’s the Bob (featuring dark chocolate ice cream and potato chips) or the Brian Corn Luscher (named after chef Danyele McPherson’s former boss at the Grape) with summer corn ice cream and port-soaked blackberries.
Remedy, 2010 Greenville Ave., 469-294-4012, remedydallas.com