When we first checked out Jack London Square's newest seafood restaurant Jack's Oyster Bar & Fish House in August, we had the dreamiest soft-serve ice cream with salted caramel topped with cornflakes. We recently went back for dinner and were invited to try out some of Jack's Fall desserts thanks to Executive Pastry Chef Paul Conte, who also runs the pastry program next door at Bocanova.
The Man Behind the Desserts
Pastry Chef Paul Conte really knocks it out of the park when it comes to desserts. He formerly worked at MarketBar and Chaya Brasserie in San Francisco before starting his career at Bocanova and Jack's. In addition to having worked at many known establishments in New York and developing artistic talents through music and photography, Paul combines both his artistic and culinary skills into creating terrific warm and savory desserts that will keep you coming back for more.
Jack's Oyster Bar & Fish House Dessert Tasting Review
The desserts are priced from $6 to $9. I would recommend getting a dessert per person because after having a bite, you'll regret sharing instead of eating it all yourself. Paul was out that day, so Sous Chef Daryl Johnson played the role of dessert maker for us. Here's a look at the desserts we tried:
Chocolate Malted Fudge Cake with Caramelized Bananas and Toasted Marshmallow
This dessert deserves a round of applause. It's delicious and makes me want to sit outside near a campfire and toast marshmallows all day. You get the perfect combination of gooey marshmallows, rich chocolate cake, and sweet caramelized bananas. If that's not enough, there's a heavenly layer of malted cream underneath the cake that adds an extra depth of flavor and sophistication. Lastly, it's finished with a sprinkle of pink peppercorns.
Carrot Cake with Caramel Popcorn and Popcorn Ice Cream
The carrot cake was our favorite out of the three tastings. Imagine fluffy and moist, yet buttery and rich - packed with carrots in each bite. The caramel popcorn created a wonderful sweet and salty combination with some crunch. The popcorn ice cream brings the entire dessert together to perfection; loved the unique flavor. It was a very well-balanced dessert.
Ginger Cake with Bananas, Figs and Ice Cream
This was a limited-run dessert created by Jack's Sous Chef, Daryl Johnson, so it may no longer be available. The ginger cake was very enjoyable; dark, rich, and gingery. The spices of the cake go nicely with the bananas, figs and candied nuts. The ice cream was a nice touch, allowing your mouth to take a break and cool off from all the spices.
I am a huge fan of Jack's and think it's a great addition to Jack London Square/Oakland. It is one of my favorite restaurants in Oakland for good reason. From cocktails to seafood to desserts, everything we've devoured has been wonderful, making it a great place to dine.
The desserts are creative, comforting and satisfying that it's probably worth the visit alone. Who says you can't skip dinner and go straight to dessert?
If you missed my recap post from the preview party, click here to check it out: First Look: Delicious & Thoughtful Seafood Fare at Jack's Oyster Bar and Fish House Review.
Thanks for the desserts, Paul, Daryl and Jack's Oyster Bar and Fish House!
VISITING JACK'S OYSTER BAR & FISH HOUSE
336 Water St. Oakland, California 94607
Opens Everyday from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m.
They take reservations only at 5:30 p.m. on OpenTable
During other times, guests are seated on a first-come, first-served basis