Black Hound's window display, fronting 12th Street in the East Village, is such a pretty sight. Whenever I happen to pass by, it is inevitable that I stop and pause, observing the neatly arranged rows of sweets—hummingbird cakes, triple mousse towers, and chocolate cappuccino cups. And then I sigh, wishing I had both the wallet and the stomach to experience it all.
The cakes clock in slightly north of everyday affordability, but don't let that deter you from stepping into the shop. It's only inside that you'll spot the cake stands, perhaps a dozen or so, filled with brownies, little pies, and cakes.
These tiny treats are of the same quality as the window cakes, only less fancy and prettied up. They're $3.50 apiece, definitely worthy of a weekday indulgence. Choose between the chocolate-on-chocolate Mud Ball, an almond touched Snowball, the Checkerboard, and the Hazelnut. The Checkerboard marries chocolate and vanilla cake in (you guessed it) a checkerboard pattern with a silky strip of dark chocolate buttercream cutting through center. The whole "cake" is enrobed in white chocolate buttercream, and rolled in both chocolate and vanilla cake crumbs. Simple at its core, but certainly a bit more fancified than your everyday cake.