For people with a penchant for sweet things, it can be difficult to find enough quality dessert places to satisfy the constant sugar-driven cravings. To indulge a relentless sweet tooth, check out these six East Bay eateries where you can drop in for a quick, sweet bite at any hour of the day.
10 a.m.: Little Gem Belgian Waffles
2468-A Telegraph Ave, Berkeley; 510-883-8922; LittleGemWaffles.com.
Opened last year, this Belgian waffle spot has already established its reputation as a favorite on Telegraph. At Little Gem, Liége Belgian waffles are baked into a concoction of fluffy dough and crispy, sugar-lined crunch right before hungry eyes, then served piping hot. With toppings that run the gamut — everything from chicken tenders to Speculoos to organic ice cream — Little Gem hits the spot for any type of craving. The shop recently began opening for breakfast, so visit before your morning coffee.
1 p.m.: Pepples Donut Farm
6037 San Pablo Ave, Oakland; 510-338-6319; PepplesDonuts.com
With locations in Oakland, San Francisco, Berkeley, and even a new store in Los Angeles, Donut Farm is forging a path as the delicious vegan alternative to glazed-donut goodness in California. The Oakland location offers glass cases filled to the brim with 100% organic donuts hand-dipped in glazes made on-site, ranging in color from magenta to lime green. Their unconventional flavors — such as Green Apple or Pumpkin Spice — and petite size make a wonderful after-lunch (or brunch) pick-me-up.
4 p.m.: Chocolatier Blue
1964 University Ave, Berkeley; 510-705-8800; ChocolatierBlue.com
Tucked between a mess of dimly lit storefronts on Downtown Berkeley’s University Avenue, Chocolatier Blue stands out easily — a welcome respite of bright, baby blue paint in a sea of brown and gray. The chocolate shop’s white display is lined with scores of variegated chocolates, boasting flavors like “Peanut Butter Chocolate,” “Sangria,” and “Chili.” Their gorgeous layout, generous samples, and diverse flavors make the place perfect for grabbing a cute surprise gift for a friend — or a quick nibble for yourself on a lazy afternoon.
7 p.m.: Cookiebar Creamery
517 8th St, Oakland; 510-683-5112; CookieBarCreamery.com
Although giants like Cream, Fentons, and Ici dominate the ice cream scene in the East Bay, a handful of smaller enterprises like Cookiebar Creamery put up an excellent fight. The Creamery is a homey Oakland spot with clean, white décor that works wonderfully as a backdrop for the sixteen unusual flavors it offers. Unconventional tastes like Ube — imported Filipino purple yam — and Vietnamese Coffee make the ice cream joint a great spot for those seeking an excuse to dirty their palate before dinnertime.
9:30 p.m.: 85°C Bakery Café
21 Shattuck Square, Berkeley; 510-540-8585; 85BakeryCafe.com
It’s hard to ignore the overwhelming aroma of freshly baked bread permeating from 85°C Bakery in Downtown Berkeley. Installed last fall, the trademark Asian bakery has already become a well-known haven for its dizzying shelves of heavenly pastries, illuminated by the glow of soft yellow light. It stands two stories high and gives visitors enough space to sit and sip smooth, individually brewed, Guatemalan coffee beans alongside delectable taro buns, fluffy sponge cakes, and egg tarts. 85°C is also one of the few bakeries open past 9 p.m., so you can indulge in some baked goods late at night.
1:15 a.m.: Shooting Star Café
1022 Webster St, Oakland; 510-251-9882
In the heart of Oakland’s Chinatown, this Hong Kong style café has a huge variety of dessert and dinner options for anyone who enjoys rich food. Open from 7 a.m. to 1:30 a.m. every day, there’s no time that isn’t right to visit one of the area’s busiest restaurants. At the end of a night out — or as a brief break in between parties — stop by Shooting Star for a quick dessert. Their warm egg puffs and iced Hong-Kong-style milk tea are a cozy complement to any type of evening.