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Food & Drink

Cheesecake Heaven

MapPoughquag, NY
  • Specialty Food Shops


Cindy Sheils likes to compare cheesecake to wine. “It’s all cheesecake, but there are so many variations and everyone has a different taste,” says the owner of this home-based business. Operating since 2011 and based on a family recipe, but without a storefront, Sheils, a former Poughkeepsie restaurateur, has been quietly building a devoted fan base who seek her out at local farmers’ markets and festivals. While plain, strawberry, and chocolate-peanut butter comprise her trinity of best-sellers, she’ll often make specialty cakes for events, such as maple-bacon or chocolate-bourbon concoctions. And then there are the seasonal cakes like pecan or pumpkin for fall. Why the diehard devotion? It’s the fresh baking, of course, but also Sheils’ technique of layering flavors at the bottom of the graham-cracker crust so that there’s a textural/flavor contrast between the cake itself and the extras. If you don’t want a cake, try the single servings, each in its own little tart cup. “Just grab and go,” says Sheils.

Additional Information:

Best of Hudson Valley Winners: 2015
County: Dutchess
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