Quest For The Best: Cheesecake


Life + Spaces magazine takes you on a “quest to find the best” local foods in our marketplace. Each issue will feature a locally produced food category, and our review of what to expect.

LaSalle Grill
115 West Colfax Ave.
South Bend

Chef Lisa Sheridan creates all of the desserts and pastries at LaSalle Grill. She admits to spending three years perfecting her cheesecake before she put it on the menu.

Taste tested:

Pecan Praline and Strawberry Rhubarb
A classic cheesecake with graham cracker crust and a buttery sweet pecan praline topping. “Smooth, light and creamy crème cheese filling, but not heavy.”

Strawberry Rhubarb
Strawberry rhubarb topping has fresh strawberry
with a nice balance – not too sweet and
not too tart. Following the “modern
American” cuisine served at LaSalle Grill,
the presentation was unique and
artfully served.

Villa Macri
225 Toscana Blvd.
Granger, IN 46530
Executive Chef: Tony Vadala.

Villa Macri’s Executive Chef Tony Vadala has bragging rights to the most interesting job interview. Owner Jerry Macri was convinced of Tony’s gourmet culinary skills before hiring him, but wanted to be sure that his talents were “diversified”. Jerry asked Tony to made a traditional meatloaf, Jerry’s favorite food, and he got the job.

Taste tested:

Tiramasu and Caramel Apple
Both desserts were a great hybrid of two desserts in one – for the person who can’t decide which to choose!

“A sophisticated tiramasu flavor” fluffy, white
cream on top of a cake layer and decorated
with chocolate shavings

Caramel Apple
“Sweet, rich and distinct”
“Smooth and creamy with crisp, juicy apples
“tastes just like a caramel apple!”

Santa Barbara Cheesecakes
Berrien Springs, MI

Santa Barbara Cheesecake was established in 1980 in a storefront in Santa Barbara California. Owner Kathy Farley-Hayden purchased the business and the recipes in 1988 and ran the original bakery until 2004. At that time she returned to her hometown of Houston, and in 2007 moved to the Michiana area.

Taste tested:

Santa Barbara Original
True, classic cheesecake flavor
Thick, rich, smooth and creamy
Compact size perfect for small parties

German Chocolate
“rich and creamy yet true cheesecake taste”
“sweet like chocolate mousse”
chocolate cookie crust
“for the true chocolate lover”
appearance that of German chocolate cake

Feast of Eden Cheesecakes
Chef Lisa (847) 991–EDEN (3336)

Chef Lisa Bellan originates from the South Bend area and now lives in Palatine IL, but her cheesecakes continue to have a following in the South Bend area from her presence at the South Bend Farmer’s Market.

taste tested:

Creamy Coconut
Lemon Blueberry Swirl
Raspberry Swirl
Lime Twist

All had a beautiful presentation with
garnishments and whipped topping.

Creamy whipped filling
Light and airy consistency
Wonderfully smooth texture
Fresh, raspberry taste and no artificial flavor
Nice balance of flavors that compliment each other
“Great coconut taste with fresh coconut throughout…”
Fruit marbled throughout the cheesecake
Lime twist has great balance of sweet and zest
Crust is light and delicious