Iconic Upper East Side Eatery Doesn’t Live Up to the Hype

The home of the “World’s Most Expensive Dessert” fails to impress the plebeians.

Yusuf Husain, Contributing Writer

Since 1954, the Upper East Side’s Serendipity 3 has been serving up eclectic desserts in a quirky, colorful diner adorned with Tiffany lamps and pop-art style prints. The restaurant’s Frrrozen Haute Chocolate rings in at a whopping $25,000 and has been certified by The Guinness Book of World Records since 2007 as the world’s most expensive dessert. The opulent indulgence is even served with a diamond-encrusted spoon. 

For NYU students who would rather pay for most of a semester of school than a single dessert, the restaurant offers a standard Frrrozen Hot Chocolate too (notice the less sophisticated spelling of the word “hot”), and at the much more reasonable cost of $14.

Due to its more affordable price, Frrrozen Hot Chocolate is what Serendipity 3 is best known for. It’s served in a large glass goblet, topped with whipped cream and a generous serving of chocolate shavings. 

At first glance, this drink checked all the boxes. The sheer size of the glass, the chocolate overflowing from the sides and the color-coordinated straws and spoon just begged me to Instagram the experience. It was pure eye candy. 


But as soon as I took my first sip, everything changed. I felt ice chips in my mouth and what the menu described as “decadent” chocolate was closer to back-of-the-fridge Swiss Miss than the creamy indulgence I had expected. The chocolate shavings were bitter and didn’t blend well with the flavor of the drink. Even the copious serving of whipped cream didn’t do much to save me from the watery texture.

While the Frrrozen Hot Chocolate was disappointing, I did enjoy the Chocolaccino Caffé. Its strong espresso paired well with the chocolate shavings on top and the consistency of the milk was light and foamy without being too airy. And at only $8.50, it presented itself as being worth my money in comparison to the less fulfilling Frrrozen Hot Chocolate. 

If you’ve never been to Serendipity 3, it’s definitely worth a visit. It’s an iconic New York City establishment with a storied history. But if you’re looking for a cold, chocolatey treat, you’re better off skipping the subway ride uptown and grabbing a shake from Black Tap Burger instead.

Email Yusuf Husain at [email protected]



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