How much of a lock does the Cheesecake Factory have on the restaurant-cheesecake biz? The megachain with a megamenu is offering an “any slice, half price” deal on July 30, which is National Cheesecake Day — but there are conditions.
It’s dine-in only, and it’s one slice per guest, and, um, you must be present, in case you didn’t get the dine-in only part. And it’s valid only in the U.S. including Puerto Rico. Just thought we’d point that out, in case you landed on this post from Australia or someplace. Or the United Kingdom, where Starbucks has introduced three cheesecake Frappuccino flavors.
There is, of course, a big Cheesecake Factory in Sundance Square, but us longtime downtown denizens still miss Randall’s Gourmet Cheesecake Co., where you could order a savory cheesecake and then have a sweet one for dessert. But that closed in 2005.
It proved a little tougher than we thought it would to find some non-Cheesecake Factory cheesecakes — but we did find them, and there are more out there. A few are closed Monday, but don’t worry if you can’t celebrate on Monday. You can always celebrate National Cheesecake Day late. After all, it’s not a real holiday.
Assorted cheesecakes, Bay34th Street Diner
This “New York diner” is just one of the interesting restaurants to have come along at 3330 Matlock Road, and it does breakfast and lunch only — but you can have dessert at both. “The eye-catcher is the dessert case full of cheesecakes (the tres leches cheesecake is the early favorite on social media),” our Bud Kennedy wrote in an Eats Beat column in May.
Mango cheesecake, Cannon Chinese Kitchen
Another semi-hidden restaurant on the Near Southside, Cannon does just about everything right, from its quiet setting in an old house to its elegantly presented Asian food. This cheesecake is a good way to top off a meal there.
White-chocolate caramel cheesecake, DeVivo Bros. Eatery
This is a standard menu item at this Keller favorite, but they’ll also make a seasonal cheesecake on request — although you’ll have to wait till September to get the popular pumpkin cheesecake. 750 S. Main St. Suite 165, Keller, 817-431-6890, http://devivobroseatery.com
Vanilla yuzu cheesecake, Grace
Grace isn’t an Asian restaurant, but it is serving a vanilla yuzu cheesecake, featuring yuzu, a tart citrus fruit from Japan. There’s more to this cheesecake, though: it comes with roasted cherries, pistachio crumble and pistachio gelato. If you want a more straightforward yuzu cheesecake, see Tokyo Cafe, below. 777 Main St., Fort Worth, 817-877-3388, gracefortworth.com
Blueberry-lemon cheesecake, HG Sply. Co.
HG started as a paleo restaurant (“HG” stems from “hunter-gatherer”), but it has branched out a little since then, while still offering some paleo items. We’re not sure whether blueberry-lemon cheesecake falls under the paleo category, but it’s served with a Texas honey/sunflower-seed crumble and a blueberry compote, so there’s definitely some gathering going into this. 1621 River Run No. 176, Fort Worth, 682-730-6070, http://www.hgsplyco.com
Zydeco Dancer, Razzoo’s Cajun Cafe
Deconstructed cheesecake, in the form of the Zydeco Dancer: layers of cheesecake filling and strawberries on a pecan/graham-cracker crust, served in a schooner glass with enough whipped cream that you’re not sure where the cream ends and the cheesecake filling begins. But it begins: It might not look like traditional cheesecake, but it tastes like it.. 2950 Texas Sage Trail (Alliance Town Center), Fort Worth, 817-750-0011; 318 Main St. (Sundance Square), Fort Worth, 817-429-7009; 4700 Bryant Irvin Road, Fort Worth, 817-292-8584; 4001 S. Cooper St., Arlington, 817-467-6510; nine Dallas-area locations; https://www.razzoos.com
Matcha cheesecake, Righteous Foods
Lanny Lancarte II’s west-side restaurant is health-conscious — but not to health-conscious for inventive, rotating flavors of cheesecake. Of course the one now — a matcha cheesecake with acai and beet puree — sounds pretty healthy. As cheesecakes go, that is. 3405 W. 7th St., Fort Worth, 817-850-9996, https://eatrighteously.com
Cheesecakes and mini-cheesecakes, Swiss Pastry Shop
It’s better known for its Black Forest cake, its crack pie and a lot of pastry-case cookies, but this Vickery Boulevard mainstay does sell cheesecakes — and mini-cheesecakes, which are more popular. It can be hard to steer away from that Black Forest cake, but give the cheesecake a try. (But you’ll have to wait till after National Cheesecake Day — Swiss Pastry is closed on Monday.) 3936 W. Vickery Blvd., Fort Worth, 817-732-5661, http://www.swisspastryonline.com
Nutella marble cheesecake, Taverna
Quiet but popular downtown Sundance Square Italian restaurant has survived in a part of downtown where a couple of other Italian restaurants came and went quickly. And it has a Nutella marble cheesecake with sour cherry sauce on the dessert menu. That should go well after some pizza or risotto. 450 Throckmorton St., Fort Worth, 817-885-7502, http://tavernabylombardi.com
Chocolate tres leches cheesecake, Tia’s On the Bluff
This semi-hidden restaurant a couple of blocks north of downtown Fort Worth goes for the best of two (and maybe three) worls with a chocolate tres leches cheesecake, which consists of layers of classic cheesecake and milk-bleeding tres leches. It may not be cheesecake for purists, but it is definitely good. 1301 E. Bluff St., Fort Worth, 817-349-0964, http://tiasonthebluff.com
Yuzu cheesecake, Tokyo Cafe
Salted caramel cheesecake, Twigs Bistro and Martini Bar
Pretty much what it says, although this Shops at Clearfork restaurant does use a spiced graham-cracker crust, and the salted caramel comes in the form of the sauce drizzled across the New York cheesecake. 5289 Marathon Ave., Fort Worth, 817-764-0025, https://twigsbistro.com