Restaurant: Sweet Esc
Location: 30 Gibson Drive, Markham, ON L3R 8B5
Price Range: $$
Sweet Esc, another newly opened and affordable dessert place in Markham that is located in the same plaza with Chatime. I think it is quite smart for Sweet Esc to open near Chatime, as the latter doesn’t serve dessert (only some donuts) so Chatime buyers can come to Sweet Esc after buying bubble tea, or vice versa :). Furthermore, I believe this place and Esc-It are owned by the same people. I have played Esc-It before and it was really fun! Definitely check them out when you are the in area.
Upon entering the place, I was surprised to see it is quite small and there are not many tables set up! I believe at best, this place can only hold 15-20 people on a non-busy night. They should definitely add more tables as there were a lot of empty spaces. I also love the white brick walls, and how it provides a cleanliness and modern feel to Sweet Esc :). Not much decorations going on yet, but they just opened so I can look past that.
I love the lights lol I kept looking up the ceiling, I wish my ceiling was higher so I can install these lights :(.
The menu is really simple and apparently they are still in the soft-opening week, hence the menu will change later on. The price is not bad, in my opinion it is actually very affordable. Unquestionably the hot plate caught my eyes as I have never seen this kind of dessert in Toronto before, and I also wanted the Guava Coconut drink but they seem to have taken that off the menu :(. For the hot plate though, I think they should give each customer a sheet of topping/ice-cream options and customer would put a check mark for their choices. Obviously this should be done after they have more toppings, but this way the servers wouldn’t have to memorize the order and run into a risk of making wrong orders (just like how mine almost did :p).
For the hot plate, first you have to choose your base, ice-cream, sauce and finally the toppings. The iron plate is heated until it is boiling hot, then the chef would put the base and all the toppings on top. All you have to do is to pour the chocolate sauce around the base and you will start to see some steam and sizzle! I filmed a short video of myself pouring the sauce on Instagram so you can check it out here :).
Now all you have to do is to wait for the sizzle to stop and you can enjoy your waffle! As seen in the picture, the portion was quite generous for the price I paid for, but I wished there was more variation of fruits and extra fruit pieces. To be honest, while the effect was “cool,” I don’t understand the purpose of the iron plate. I have done some research, and so far it seems the plate was only there for the effect, but taste-wise it was just like any regular waffle. Furthermore, the waffle wasn’t that great, it was too dense and chewy for my taste. Likewise the brownie was okay, my friend said it was just like any other brownie he have had. If you ask me, I think the iron-plate should be heated longer so then the heat will cook the bases, and give them a slight crust on the outside. The good thing about these desserts was that all the components weren’t too sweet, and the bitter dark chocolate helped to balance the sweetness of the dishes.
Overall while I think the hot-plate dishes were ah-okay with fun effect, I would visit again once they have finalized their menu. As the owners are still in the menu-testing phase, there are rooms for improvement in terms of the offerings and quality of the dishes. Also, most items were decently priced for the amount and taste of food, it doesn’t hurt to try if you are in the area to grab chatime :p.