Re-inventing Danish butter cookies in Vietnamese style.
As we lurch into a third year of the pandemic, one of the silver linings of these anxious times has to be the proliferation of dessert small businesses. Whether by way of individuals making personal deliveries or the catch-me-if-you-can pop-ups, there are an increasing number of dessert purveyors across NYC that aim to bring a little sweetness to our lives. Commencing operations in 2020, Ban Bè was one of the first dessert pop-ups that emerged in the Covid-era. Almost two years later, thanks to significant traditional and social media hype (see e.g., here and here), its cookie box is still one of the most difficult desserts to get your hands on in NYC. The waitlist apparently runs to 10,000 people!
One rainy weekend in December, after many many months of cyber-stalking, we managed to snag a tin box of Ban Bè’s much sought-after cookies. Expressly “inspired by Danish butter cookies,” our Ban Bè box contained four flavours of cookies: a vivid green “Coconut Pandan,” a deep purple “Black Sesame Ube,” a blush pink “Salt & Pepper Cherry” and our favourite, the square-cut “Cà Phê Crunch” coated in sugar crystals. The cookie flavours are rather muted, but they would make for a pleasant accompaniment to an afternoon cup of tea or coffee.
A few months ago, we noted (here, here, here and here), the emergence of a new dessert trend in NYC — specifically, that of the growing prominence of South-East Asian desserts. From Lady Wong‘s kuih cakes, to small sweet street snacks from Kabisera, a dessert treasure trove from Boiisco, Whisk, Purple Dough, Eunecakes and FliRo, Sundae Service‘s ice cream, Kora’s extravagant doughnuts, and now cookies from Ban Bè, the trend continues to go from strength to strength! We are certainly looking forward to the opening of Ban Bè’s brick-and-mortar shop, and all the promise of other delectable desserts that brings!
Dessert adventure checklist
- ☑ Dessert destination: At the time of writing, Ban Bè still has no physical location. Check out its Instagram page (here) for the next dessert pop-up event.
- ☑ Budget: $$-$$$ ($50 approx for a box).
- ☑ Sweet irresistibles: South East Asian desserts.
- ☑ Must-eat: Cà Phê Crunch.
- ☑ The short and sweet story: Re-inventing Danish butter cookies in Vietnamese style.