The Dessert Indulgence is a fabulous addition to downtown Kingston’s family of cafés and restaurants. The location, the desserts, and the service create a decadent and wonderful experience. I’ve had the pleasure of meeting the Owner and Executive Pastry Chef, Saima Kamran Haque, initially in the Kingston Connections networking group when I first launched my business. It was no surprise to learn that she is a pastry chef as her friendly and warm demeanour just said it all. I couldn’t wait for her café to open. Not only to indulge in the delectable items but also to write a blog about it.
Saima is reaching a year into running a successful café. That is something highly commendable. I’m sure many of us who had Easybake Ovens or dreams of opening our own cupcake shop would agree. There is certainly a difference between baking for joy and combining that joy with your career: you have to really want it in order to succeed. Saima is full proof of that. Throughout her travels and experiences of living in various countries, Saima always dreamed of starting her own café. That dream manifested its way into reality when she and her family settled down in Kingston. Prior to that time, Saima took her love for baking up a notch by receiving training at Le Cordon Bleu in the UK. She took an intensive training program over the course of two summers while she lived in Saudi Arabia.
Saima’s passion for dessert is well executed through The Dessert Indulgence’s evolving menu. Saima is always coming up with new ideas. In fact, the creative energy is what feeds herself as well as her customers. That’s a wonderful fringe benefit of inspiration in my opinion. She says: “I feel I wouldn’t be alive if I couldn’t create.” One of her latest creations is the pistachio and cherry cheesecake. When she mentioned this in her interview with me, my first reaction was verbatim: “ooooohhhh!” I meant that from the bottom of my heart, crescendo in inflection and all.
After carefully experimenting with the recipe a number of times, it was perfected and the final product was ready to be sold. It was love at first sight and love at first and last bite. Such a lovely combination. That top layer of mousse served as a light and airy cushion for the cherries and pistachios on top. It was the perfect companion to my Moroccan mint tea.
A unique feature of The Dessert Indulgence is its incorporation of international flavours. Saima’s love for South Asian spices has sparked the inspiration to infuse them into her desserts such as cumin shortbread and cardamom shortbread. I’ve also seen traditional items such as kheer, panna cotta, and crème bruleè at the café. Fusing these international flavours is an indication of her training and travel while linking the flavours of the world together in one stunning café. And the best part is, you don’t need your passport to taste those vibrant flavours.
Saima wants lure the Kingston community into the adventurous delights of The Dessert Indulgence. She encourages us to have an open minded palate. But if you don’t have one, fear not. She provides samples from time to time. You’ll be more than glad you gave her desserts a try.
Exciting things have been happening at the The Dessert Indulgence. Saima and her staff hosted her first event called “For the Love of It.” It was a lively event which featured local writers, poets from The H’art Centre, a belly dance performance, and live music. The Dessert Indulgence’s influence has also spread to other great restaurants in Kingston. The Grizzly Grill is ordering their desserts exclusively from them and the desserts will also be featured at Atomica in the near future. In celebration of its one-year anniversary, The Dessert Indulgence will be hosting an open house on March 20th from 12pm until 5pm. It is expected to be an event full of cheer and celebration. Samples, music, and great company are sure to make your Sunday extra special. You don’t want to miss this joyous occasion at this gorgeous café. Congratulations on your success Saima, may you continue to provide memorable indulgences to the rest of the community!