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A monk helps elevate a decadent dessert

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When I’m eating out, I usually decline suggested wine and liquor/liqueur pairings with dessert because a) by that point in the meal, my focus is on the bill, which I don’t want to pad unnecessarily; and b) I enjoy dessert so much, additional lubrication tends to be superfluous. But a recent meal at tayst restaurant in Nashville changed my mindset.

After a great dinner, I ordered crème brulee for dessert. The waitress suggested a glass of rum as accompaniment. I was about to take my usual pass when she began describing how the caramel smokiness of this 7-year-old rum was a perfect pairing for the vanilla crème brulee. I gave in and she brought out a shot of Old Monk. My husband and I alternated bites of the custard with sips of the rum, communicating with widened eyes and smiles of delight at how each enhanced the other. Toward the end, we even dripped a bit of the rum into the ramekin to scrape up the last silky bites of custard.

My excitement turned to exhilaration when I got home and Googled Old Monk, discovering it was an affordable $15 bottle. That weekend we had dinner guests, and guess what I served? It was the first time I planned a dessert around a drink, but based on the raves, you can bet I’ll be doing so again.

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  • GeorgeCooks | 03/31/2009

    It's always a nice surprise to see the real-world price of a drink from a restaurant, and realize you can enjoy it much more cheaply at home!

  • pumkinfolk | 03/31/2009

    Good to see the old monk winning converts ... Thanks for reporting on a great dessert combination. You had me at 'caramel smokiness.'

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