New delights at Corndance Tavern

We’ve talked about Corndance Tavern before, but this gem in Mishawaka is totally worth talking about again. Especially since they have a creative new pastry chef!

Last week, we visited Corndance on Friday night, after one of those “hangry” conversations you have where you’re both starving and everything but nothing sounds good. We came up with the idea of stopping by Corndance to try their new desserts, but figured they’d be way too busy to actually get in, so we called ahead. Surprise! They had a table and all our problems were solved!

It was such a good choice. From start to finish, every dish we had was deliciously, perfectly satisfying.

We both ordered off of the Blackboard Specials menu. Sam had halibut with a parmesan and pea risotto that included fresh clams and crispy snap peas. It was rich and creamy, and the fish was perfectly seasoned with just a bit of crisp char, it complemented the risotto nicely. I had a grilled flank steak with spicy grilled cactus, and an avocado salad with homemade tortilla crisps on top. I’d never had cactus before, and it was an unusual treat!

On to dessert!

Sam and I knew that Corndance Tavern had recently hired a new pastry chef (because she happens to be one of our friends), so we were sure to save room to sample some of her new desserts.

I’m so glad we did, because both desserts were really creative. They were things we’d never tried before, but both had hints of nostalgic flavors that made them instantly enjoyable. I was impressed with both.

The first was a coconut and cara cara orange tart. It was so pretty, I was almost afraid to take a bite!

tart

The tart had a coconut crust and was topped with an edible flower. This dessert was really sweet, and I don’t usually like that about any desserts, but I couldn’t stop eating it. I kept trying to figure out what it reminded me of. Finally, we settled on one of those orange sherbet push-pops that we all ate on really hot days when we were kids! Wow! Once we realized this, it was like being transported to being 10 years old in your back yard again! It was a nice surprise from a tropically-inspired tart.

 

smores

You’ll probably recognize the s’mores inspiration in this dessert right away. The surprise here was the base of the s’more—a really satisfying cornbread bread pudding. With the combination of the homemade caramelized marshmallow and the dark chocolate, this dessert was heavenly, and a great not-too-sweet counterpart to the coconut tart. I alternated bites between the two !

We actually ended up keeping half of the s’mores dessert to take home and enjoy later with coffee and a fire in the fireplace. It was so good!

I highly recommend celebrating a special evening at Corndance Tavern when you want something you can’t find at many other places in the Michiana area.

-Jane

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