So, you know how much you hate those targeted ads on social media that basically prove “they” are listening to you? Yeah, same. …Except I hate to admit that sometimes they are just so spot-on that I have to give in! This was one of those times, and I have zero regrets. ✌️
Dessert Goals is a “highly curated dessert festival celebrating indulgence, discovery, and deliciousness. The festivals feature the very best sweets in the city with many vendors making exclusive event desserts. The treats are featured in one beautiful, interactive space with photo activations, a salt bar to cleanse your palate, refreshing drinks, and other surprises. We have taken food festival to a new level.”
When you think of “heaven“, what comes to mind? For me, an ideal afterlife would definitely include adorable animals and all the sweet treats one can imagine. 😋 Knowing this, I guess you could say that this weekend was the closest I’ve come to experiencing heaven (though in real heaven, I wouldn’t have to worry about the calories…)!
Dessert Goals comes up with a fun new theme for each festival, and this weekend was “Party Animal.” I decided that this was a great excuse to wear my new red panda onesie all day (thanks, Casey & Ellen!)–cute and comfy for when ‘just enough’ sweets inevitably turns into ‘too many.’
The location, Sound River Studios in Long Island City, is a bit out of the way no matter what train you take (and any New Yorker will tell you that weekend subways are a nightmare). Conor and I decided to take a Lyft, and were a bit surprised when it dropped us off at a large industrial building on the river. However, there was already a huge line once we arrived, with a few people dressed with “party animal” flair, so we knew we were in the right place.
Thankfully, it wasn’t long before we were inside. The large space had been creatively decorated to fit the theme, with animal cut-outs, colorful fabrics, paw prints, and more. The 20+ dessert vendors lined the walls, their tasty treats on display for all to drool over. We were given a map to find specific vendors, but decided instead to just walk around and see what everyone had to offer.
I was immediately drawn to the ice cream sandwiches made with donuts (“cremellas“) from Stax Ice Cream. Each vendor only has a set number of sweets they can sell per timeslot, so if you have your heart set on something specific, snatch it up ASAP! I went with the pink ice cream with Fruity Pebbles, and it was just divine. 🍩
Conor had been craving cookies since this morning, so we made our way to Baked in Color. They were selling gorgeous rainbow cookies, which taste just like chocolate chip cookies (only the color is different!). I prefer my cookies on the soft side with plenty of chips, so these were absolutely perfect for me. The lady at the booth was a total sweetheart, looking through the cookie selection to give us the “prettiest ones” (I didn’t ask her to, I swear!). I’d say she hooked us up quite well. 😉
I just can’t resist a good kawaii macaron (seriously–check out my Instagram!). Stache of Goods did not disappoint with these on-theme animal macarons, and I can honestly say they are as delicious as they are adorable. The inside filling is soft and fresh, with unique Asian-inspired flavors. I was devastated to discover that the red panda macarons were all sold out (how cute would that have been with my onesie?!), but we settled on the unicorn and Pusheen-narwhal(??).
Spoonable Spirits caught our eye as being the only 21+ dessert option at the event, with their booze-infused puddings. I went for the “Whiskey Rolos” flavor and can confirm that the delightful little pudding cup had a strong taste of whiskey. Plus, it’s just super cute! I mean, look at that donkey.
I’m a bit ashamed to admit that cotton candy has never really been my thing. It doesn’t make much sense, considering how much I love sugar. Shouldn’t I be obsessed with fluffy clouds of spun sugary goodness?! Even though I don’t like eating them, I do love looking and touching (so soft…). Thankfully, Conor does enjoy cotton candy, so we got one anyway from the wonderful Brooklyn Floss! 💕Muahaha.
I decided to finish off my afternoon of sweets with a bubble tea from Tea and Milk. I’m fortunate enough to have one of these somewhat close to me, so I have been to their shops before. But I will never pass up a brown sugar milk tea! As sweet as always. 🙂
Unfortunately, even for a sugar freak like me, there is only so much you can consume in an hour and a half. But, that didn’t stop me from photographing the adorable desserts on sale from other vendors! See below for some festival highlights. 👇
I was pleasantly surprised to see that Dessert Goals had its own cute merchandise, including hats, t-shirts, pins, patches, tote bags, cards, and prints. The pale lilac “Dessert Goals” tote was right up my alley, so I grabbed one of those as well as an adorable print drawing of a red panda drinking bubble tea… How could I not?! Too perfect!
I will say that I do wish the timeslot for general admission tickets was longer. Your $17.00 ticket gives you complimentary candy, mochi ice cream from My/Mo Mochi, beverages from Boxed Water, Sparkling Ice, Harmless Harvest, and Chameleon Cold Brew, some chips at the salt bar, and access to the venue for 1.5 hours. This hour and a half flies by when you’re standing in vendor lines, waiting your turn for photo ops, eating the desserts you’ve bought, ogling the merch, and getting some fresh air out back. I found myself trying to inhale my desserts as quickly as possible because I was always worried about the remaining time and couldn’t slow down to enjoy them to the fullest. We actually didn’t even cash in our free mochi, coffee, chips, or candy because we simply ran out of time. Bummer!
Dessert Goals does have the option of splurging on “Extra Sugar Rush” tickets, which get you access to the venue for 2 hours (30 minutes longer than GA) plus a “special gift bag with super sweet surprises”, but at $35.00, I wasn’t sure if the extra half hour and mystery bag would be worth the double cost. If you went for this option, let me know how it was in the comments below!
If you missed it this time around, don’t fret! Dessert Goals has been running since 2016 and has already had 7 festivals in NYC as well as LA. Keep an eye on their website and social media pages for future festival updates (but act fast–these tickets sell out!). I know I will be back for another sweet season of the best desserts in NYC! 🍭
Which of these treats looks best to you? 🙂 Until next time!