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New Dessert and Cocktails at La Luce, Hilton Orlando Bonnet Creek

A few weeks ago I had the superb luck to head over to La Luce at the Hilton Bonnet Creek Resort (inside the gates of Walt Disney World) to sample a brand new dessert and some innovative cocktails they’ve just added to the menu!

La Luce

New Cocktails on the Menu

Mixology is a passion for the bartenders at La Luce, and their seasonal cocktail menu clearly shows that. This season’s list includes three infusion-based drinks, which basically means that the drinks are made with alcohol that’s been flavored with fruits, vegetables, or other foods. For example, in one La Luce drink, you’ll encounter a Cocoa and Chipotle-infused Vodka while in another, you’ll find a Cranberry-infused Tequila.

Infusions -- citrus, tomato, and Buddha's Hand

If you think those jars of infusions are beautiful; wait until you see the drinks.

Infusions and Drinks

First up, a drink made with a tomato-infused Gin, along with Campari (a bitters flavored with a bitter/sour Italian citrus fruit) and a honey truffle syrup. There’s a bacon rim on this one to give a smokey essence to the drink.

The bacon makes this drink a bit salty, and the tomato infusion coupled with the sweet and bitter flavors of the other ingredients means it’s like nothing you’ve ever tasted! Definitely give it a go!

Umami: Tomato-infused Plymouth Gin, Campari, Honey Truffle Syrup, Bacon Rim

Next: the Black and Blue, a shaken drink including Gosling Black Seal rum, house-made blueberry syrup, lemon, and basil, was probably my favorite of the bunch. The house-made blueberry syrup was almost like a jam, giving the drink a thickness that you wouldn’t normally expect. It was beautiful; and delicious. A true “experience” rather than just a drink.

Black and Blue: Gosling Black Seal Rum, House-made Blueberry Syrup, Lemon, and Basil

The Citrus Sparkler is another shaken drink that includes Prosecco (yum!), Grand Marnier, a sugar cube, Angostura Bitters, and local fresh-squeezed citrus. This one was completely refreshing! I can only hope that wedding couples at the Hilton this summer are toasting with this drink! SO much more interesting than champagne!

Citrus Sparkler: Prosecco, Grand Marnier, Sugar Cube, Angostura Bitters, and Local Fresh Squeezed Citrus

I was also interested to see how many local liquors and beers were stocked at La Luce. They’re going out of their way to partner with local companies to bring truly innovative, fresh, and interesting drinks and options to the menu!

By the by, my husband tried the Maduro and the Blackwater while we were in Orlando (at different restaurants) and loved both. Monk in the Trunk is too much fun; he can’t wait to try that one next time we’re in town.

Local Liquors and Beers Served at La Luce

New Dessert!

I’m always eager to see what La Luce and the Hilton Bonnet Creek are going to cook up for dessert, because it’s always incredible. Seriously, from the Butterscotch Pudding to the cinnamon rolls and back again, it’s always good, and always the “best” version of whatever it is that you’ve ever had.

So when they told me that they had a new Polenta Cake on the menu, I thought…well, whatever it is, it’s gotta be good.

Polenta Cake

Now, I know what you’re thinking — that doesn’t look like any dessert I’ve ever had before. And I agree; it’s not. Think of it as the most moist, rich, flavorful, buttery savory-sweet cornbread cake you’ve ever had. But even that doesn’t really do it justice.

Polenta Cake Cutting

This cake is seriously dense and moist. You could easily eat it with a spoon. And the flavor is not-too-sweet, but still gives the perfect sweet-light respite you need after a heavy Italian meal.

What I loved the most about the cake, however, was the fruit that was mixed in. Mostly red currants and other fruits that can be gathered from bushes in the countryside, the berries gave such a strong, sharp zing of sweet-tart flavor that it made the cake. Add in the sweet vanilla sauce that garnishes the plate, and you’ve got a true winner of a dessert — once again, it’s like nothing I’ve ever tasted.

Polenta Cake Plated

This is the kind of cake that you can imagine being the centerpiece of a huge farmhouse family meal in Italy — it’s moist, crumbly, savory, sweet, tart, and everything in between. Definitely worth ordering on your next La Luce visit. And don’t forget to give me an invite. ;-)

Thanks to the Hilton Bonnet Creek for the chance to taste these new goodies!

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3 Comments

  1. Why do I read your site late at night and make myself hungry!!! That cake will now haunt my dreams. I hope you’re happy? ;-)

  2. Sara says:

    That polenta cake is seriously one of the most gorgeous things I think I’ve ever seen…

  3. AJ says:

    Dana — Aw, you’re too sweet! I miss you, my friend! :-) And, yes, that cake was amazing!

    Sara — Isn’t it stunning? It’s so simple, but the heft of that thing is incredible.

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