Peanut Butter Pie & Nutella® Cheesecake

My wife and I often drive up to Brookhaven, GA to shop at Costco. Every time we go up there we pass a small café-looking place called Sugar Shack. If you know me, you know I can’t see a place with the word “sugar” right in their name, and not at least take a peak inside. On our last trip up there I finally got permission from my wife to stop the car and go in.

Sugar Shack is a café and bakery combo that has some display cases filled with unique and delicious looking desserts. Everything including pies, cakes, cupcakes, cookies… you know what, let’s just call it the works. I wanted one of everything, but since my wife was waiting in the car, this would be just a quick grab-and-go stop to pick up a couple things to bring home.

There was one item in the shop that really caught my eye. It was labeled as a Peanut Butter Pie. Could you really resist something that looks like this?

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Peanut Butter Pie

My instincts were right on. This thing was fantastic! The “pie” had no crust, and instead used a large peanut butter cookie as the base. The cookie was then slathered with a layer of a fudge, that in some places dripped right over the edge.

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“Pie” Closeup

On top of the fudge were large globs of piped, whipped peanut butter that rose over an inch thick and covered the cookie, leaving nothing but the edges exposed. Finally, a mass of diced peanuts were spread across the top, and then drizzled with more of that fudge.

The peanut butter cookie had a real solid peanut butter taste. This cookie alone would have been great for a peanut butter lover like myself.

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Peanut Butter Cookie

It was quite large, about six inches across, and also very thick. Thick enough that the heavy pie never threatened to break as I held it from only one side.

You can see here that this was no wimpy dessert. The cookie was about an inch thick by itself, then with the toppings stacked on, it rose to an almost three inch thick mountain of peanut butter and chocolate.

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Pie Cross Section

The fudge layer was somewhat thin, but the flavor was concentrated and easily tasted along with all the peanut butter flavor surrounding it. The fudge wasn’t really necessary to make this an enjoyable treat, but I won’t even come close to saying it should have been left out. The overall flavor of this was obviously peanut butter, and it came in varying degrees and textures from the softer whipped peanut butter to the crunchy peanuts on top. By cookie standards, this one was fairly soft and moist, but still firm enough to hold everything together.

I loved every bite of this peanut butter pie. It was peanut butter heaven as there were almost no other flavors involved. I can’t say I’ve ever had anything similar, with as much peanut butter as this one had. It was definitely an excellent first impression of Sugar Shack, and I couldn’t wait to dig into my other choice.

Rating: 8/10

My second dessert was a Nutella® Cheesecake. I’ve noticed Nutella® popping up at more and more places in many unique ways. You already saw the Nutella® Waffle Sandwich from Disney, and just a few days ago you saw a Nutella® Milkshake from Flip Burger. This was my absolute favorite treat growing up, when my mother used to let me have Nutella® sandwiches. Imagine as a kid being able to have a chocolate sandwich. Does life get any better? Now I got to try it on a cheesecake.

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Nutella® Cheesecake

As with all cheesecakes, it started with a graham cracker base with the cheesecake as the main ingredient. The cheesecake then has a disk of chocolate covering about ¾ of the cheesecake’s diameter. It is then sprinkled with crumbles of hazelnut, which is one of the two primary flavors in Nutella®.

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Cheesecake Layers

The cheesecake had a somewhat thin crust overall, but it was proportionate to the thickness of the cheesecake. It was very similarly colored to the cheesecake, making me initially think it covered the whole cake. Once I dug the fork in found the top to be a creamier texture, I realized the crust was only on the bottom.

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Crust

The crust was very soft and seemed to have absorbed a lot of moisture from the cheesecake on top, making it close to the same light texture. It wouldn’t hold its shape when by itself, it required the cheesecake it was attached to for support. When eaten alone, the crust also didn’t have much of a taste. It’s possible that it had been in the case for a while and lost its flavor and crumbly texture to the cake’s main substance.

This cross section shows that the cheesecake had very light chocolate color from the Nutella® that was blended in.

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Cheesecake Cross Section

I found the Nutella® flavor to be minimal. It was about a 50/50 taste of a very light Nutella® flavor and regular cheesecake. The texture was good, it was stiff, but also creamy and not crumbly.

The chocolate layer on top was very very rich, it was similar to the chocolate layer on the peanut butter pie. Unfortunately it was so thin that I couldn’t tell until I scraped it off and ate it on its own.

I was disappointed in the lack of Nutella® flavor throughout the cheesecake. I was hoping for more of a Nutella® taste, and less from the cheesecake. Also, the lack of a thicker, heartier crust was very disappointing. There was a lot of potential for something special here, but they didn’t get it right in my opinion. Again, it’s possible that had I eaten a fresher one I might have found a different experience, but this one was over a day old and fell flat in both flavor and texture.

Rating: 4.5/10

I had one excellent taste, and one not so hot from the Sugar Shack. I haven’t given up hope that the majority of their desserts can probably impress me. I would love to try a few more things in the future, including a possible sandwich or salad for lunch. Their sign on the building had taunted me for months, and I finally got the chance to fulfill a craving. I’m definitely happy I did. I got at least one unique treat that was worth the stop by itself.

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