UTCA Chimney Cakes Review

UTCA Chimney Cakes has brought Hungarian street food to the ever expanding food scene in Calgary. After their opening in November of 2017, UTCA quickly became a part of my IG feed and after pining away for so long, was a must have on a quick work trip.

Their location in Victoria Park is pretty accessible as there is a ton of street parking in the area. Despite their fairly small location, they’ve made the most of it with a solid amount of indoor seating, along with beautiful displays (that as I recall, you are able to purchase) from various artists.

I must say that the finished product is delightful to look at. While they do claim to be “instagrammable”, they’ve outdone themselves on the aesthetics of this product. They have both sweet and savoury versions of the chimney cakes, but I opted for sweet for my first time. I decided on a rainbow sprinkled, cream-cheese icing inner-spread, vanilla soft-serve, nutella-drizzled and white chocolate Kit-Kat garnished chimney cake, put together with what can only be described as a huge chocolate kiss butt-plug (think Nestle Drumsticks). While I was happy and overwhelmed with the quality and variety of toppings and add-ons, unfortunately, I was not particularly compelled by the end result. With a combination like this I was expecting to be overwhelmed, but the reality is that there were a couple of things that took away from the experience.

Here I thought that Fiasco Gelato would be great for anything, but it doesn’t work particularly well as soft-serve. In fact, it melted exceptionally fast, and the chocolate kiss stoppering the end (while thick, does not completely fill the gaping chimney cake) and as a result dripped everywhere. The chocolate then becomes cold and unreasonably hard to bite through. I’m all for making a mess, but only when it’s justified. I don’t need things dripping down my chin for no reason.

Another caveat is that the chimney cake is less doughy and more bread-like than expected. Personally, I highly enjoyed the crisp on the outside, soft on the inside, bread-like taste and texture; although I can understand that sweet bread might not be appealing to some people. Like I said before, most of the ingredients themselves would have made for amazing desserts (or additions to the bedroom). The cream-cheese icing spread inside was to die for, as well as the locally sourced mixed berry jam they had used on my date’s. It just doesn’t come together in the way it’s intended.

UTCA is definitely one of a kind. They use vegan ingredients, and the flexibility of the chimney cake in its use as a savoury or sweet base (they’re even making chimney dogs!) cannot be argued with, yet, I think a change is in order. Don’t get me wrong, I love that they support local and I truly love Fiasco, but it just isn’t the soft serve I’m looking for when I’m ordering something like this. The reduced sweetness of the gelato combined with the bready chimney cake falls short of becoming the sweet treat I had envisioned. That being said, I would most certainly return to UTCA as the quality of the food is exceptional. I would love to try a savoury chimney cake as I have a feeling this is something they really nail. It just wouldn’t be my first choice for dessert.

Hunger: 3

Portion size: 3.5

Deliciousness: 7

Drunk n disorderly: 0

Overall: 7.3

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