Restaurant: Rice to Riches
Last visited: September 9, 2011
Location: Manhattan, NY (Nolita)
Address: 37 Spring Street
Nearby subway stops: Spring Street
Price Range: $10 or less
1: Poor 2: OK 3: Good 4: Very good 5: Excellent 6: Tres Excellent!!
- Specializes in rice pudding
- 20+ flavours
- Unique, gourmet flavours
- To go dessert
- Catering available
- Online ordering
- Open late
**Recommendations: You can sample them before you choose! I liked the Man-Made Mascarpone with Cherries and Almond Shmalmond, but the French Toast is also well liked. Cheesecake is popular too.
Rice to Riches?! I thought it was Recipe to Riches?! (By the way make sure you get your votes in for your favourite recipe (Dec. 7-9) here!) I gotta support my girl Glo from the sweet puddings and pies category :)) Speaking of sweet puddings though, this was another kind of sweet pudding! Rice pudding!
I was on my way to the famous Lombardi’s for pizza when I saw Pinkberry. Being that Pinkberry was a chain it caught my eye, but not really my interest. However what was next door definitely caught my eye and interest! From the looks of it I thought it was another frozen yogurt/ice cream place, which is fine by me since I love that stuff, but this was even better because it was something new! It was as busy, if not even busier than Pinkberry, and it was basically the “fro-yo” of rice pudding! I know! What the heck right?! Anyways after pizza, it was time for rice pudding!
At first I thought who really likes rice pudding THAT much to dedicate a whole store to it. I guess it’s not that surprising to have a shop dedicated to just rice pudding, but it certainly is rare. In New York there’s everything, but if you’re going to specialize in one thing, you better be damn good at it. They claim it’s “finally a rice pudding that doesn’t suck”, and it really didn’t!
But it is indeed rice pudding. If you’re not crazy about rice pudding this could change your mind. It’s not your ordinary British rice pudding that you may or may not dread for dessert. It puts the boring dessert in a new light by offering 20+ kinds of rice pudding and the flavours get pretty interesting. From Understanding Vanilla, to Fluent in French Toast, and even Sex Drugs and Rocky Road, it’s creative rice pudding you wouldn’t mind giving a second chance.
The set up is just like a frozen yogurt shop and you can select toppings, or “Jesus droppings”, to go on top of your rice pudding. The marketing is really edgy, smart and funny, and it just makes you want to buy one even if you’re not a rice pudding fan. It’s rice pudding for the 21st century and it puts a modern twist to an old fashioned comfort food. It made it into something cool and there is a lot of love for it.
If I had a choice I’d rather have ice cream, pastry or cake, but I do like rice pudding, although I never crave it. I would never make it, and I might order it at an Indian restaurant, but this was a game changer. I would actually crave Rice to Riches rice pudding. I don’t know if I would crave it if I had it easily available at home in Vancouver, BC though. Some people might complain that it’s overpriced or too rich, creamy and sweet, and it’s partially true, but I still enjoyed it. If I’m going to have rice pudding for dessert, I’m going to have it here.
Note to foodies with a sweet tooth: If you want to double up, there’s “The Best Chocolate Cake in the World” (name of the actual store) just a block away. If you’re in the area you might as well kill two birds with one stone. The rice pudding doesn’t melt and you can take it to go anyways.
On the table:
- Solo (Serves 1/1 flavour only) $6.75 Epic (Serves 1-2) $8.50 Sumo (Serves 5) Moby (Serves 10) $40 + $1 for toppings
- Man Made Mascarpone & Almond Shmalmond with Granola $9.50
- $10 for rice pudding is certainly “sit down dessert” pricing, and it was overpriced, but I still liked it.
- They come in fancy reusable plastic containers which are included in the price already.
It is probably the best rice pudding I’ve had to date.
- It was like the love child of rice pudding and a custard.
- It was super thick, ultra rich, creamy and smooth and there was more cream than there was rice.
- It was creamy like Greek yogurt creamy, and I would consider it heavy for a rice pudding.
It was custard-like, but with less egg, more cream, and maybe even some vanilla.
This flavour was less sweet than most creme brûlées and it wasn’t hurt your teeth sweet.
The rice was a really soft short grain and it seemed like broken down or overly churned arborio rice.
The almond flavour was actually quite mild, and it was just extract with no actual almonds, but I still enjoyed it.
The coconut crumble topping (+$1) tasted like light brown sugar granola crumble on a baked apple pie.
It was reminiscent of a graham cracker pie crust and it was sweet, sugary, nutty and crunchy, but I wanted more coconut.
- This was perhaps less sweet than the almond and maybe even a a bit thicker, but the cherries helped to break it up and gave it a tartness.
- It had sour dried cherries throughout and it wasn’t cheesy from marscarpone, but it was still very rich and thick.
- It actually barely tasted like marscapone or cheese, but I didn’t even care. It was just good!
- Epic (Serves 1-2) $8.50
- I liked the I Gotta The Panna Cotta flavour better, and the cinnamon in this was quite mild.
- The Panna Cotta was probably the thickest and richest of the flavours I had and it tasted just like a panna cotta in rice pudding form.
- It tasted just like French Toast Crunch cereal, but it was a bit too sweet for me.