Dairy and Divine: A close-up look at the cheesecake boutique that’s taken the country by storm

[COMMUNICATED] by Michal Eisikowitz. It all began at a joyous engagement party. Friends, neighbors, and relatives had each arrived bearing favorite desserts and confections to adorn the sweet table. As it happened, one sister-in-law contributed two carefully prepared and adorned cheesecakes.

They didn’t last long.

Within an hour, the two hapless cheesecakes were shamelessly demolished down to their very last crumbs. Diets notwithstanding, the hearts and taste buds of the guests were captivated by the rich, creamy slices, meticulously decorated and garnished. As the compliments poured in, the inspiration for Lilac and Crème began to take shape.

Since that humble beginning, Lilac and Crème—formerly known as Classique Cheese Creations—has expanded into a nationally renowned operation, boosted by a hefty triple-dose of professionalism, craftsmanship, and, of course, enormous siyata dishmaya. Today housed in an expansive commercial Lakewood facility, equipped with industrial kitchens and a full-time staff, the company ships an array of dairy desserts across the country, servicing hundreds of businesses, caterers, and individuals each year.

Baruch Green, COO of the firm, offered an insider’s peek into the makings of this distinctly successful sweet table supplier:

Describe your company vision, in one line.

To share the joy of dairy artistry, one cake at a time. It’s not just semantics: we want clients to know that the masterpiece they receive wasn’t churned out of a factory assembly line. Our team invests heart and soul into every cake; the quality control is unsurpassed.

What’s your most popular cheesecake?

The caramel-topped New York-Style cheesecake. New York-Style is the most basic cheesecake out there (if you can put “basic” and “cheesecake” in the same sentence), but when you add the irresistible caramel topping, you have a timeless winner.

For those who want to go beyond the classics, there’s quite a selection: coffee-lovers go for our cappuccino cake (made with a special 24 hour cold brew, custom-designed by an artisanal coffeemaker); chocoholics go for our triple-decker chocolate cake; peanut-butter addicts crave the peanut-butter swirl, and liqueur-fans keep coming back to our amaretto cake.

Do you retail anything besides cheesecakes?

Absolutely. We sell exquisite cheese miniatures in a variety of colors, flavors, and designs—we’re actually in the process of expanding that line, because it’s gotten very popular. We also sell cheese-filled cannolis (in two flavors), cheese florets, and savarins.

You ship all over the country, and we’ve heard that travelers even bring your cakes abroad. How do you ensure maximum freshness, and how do you preserve the intricate buttercream designs?

For more distant locales, we ship the cakes frozen, via overnight shipping. Preserving the design—that’s a trade secret that took years to develop. We regularly ship to party planners doing high-end parties in California, and their customers do not believe that the cakes originated in New Jersey.

Your cakes are known for their outrageously mouthwatering flavor, but you only use cholov yisrael ingredients. How do you swing that?

It’s a misconception that “kosher” or “cholov yisrael” necessarily portend a poorer-quality ingredient. In fact, due to rigorous cleanliness standards and severe limits on the additives that can be used, cholov yisrael milk and cream are generally the purest, most premium components out there. The products are as close to nature as possible; you haven’t ruined them with foreign matter.

Case in point: after sampling our cheesecake, the executive chef of a major hotel chain once remarked to me, “For some reason, I didn’t have a great impression of kosher food. But your product surpassed anything we’ve experienced in this genre.”

What is your busiest time of year?

Shavuos, naturally. Chanukah and Purim are a close second, along with the end of the secular year—corporate gifts for Thanksgiving and the December holidays. We do a lot of melava malka cakes in the winter. Cake orders for Shabbos morning kiddush and Sunday brunches are year-round constants.

How do your clients hear about you?

For the most part, it’s word of mouth. Or, more accurately, taste of mouth—people taste our cakes at vorts, brissim, bar/bat mitzvahs, corporate events, fundraisers, and that’s it; they’re hooked.

Who is your most typical client?

No good answer to that; there are so many types. But we do have lots of parents ordering gifts for teachers and principals, mechutanim ordering cakes for each other, and children buying stuff for their parents—that’s especially heartwarming. We’ve gotten feedback that there’s something uniquely warm and comforting about a superior-quality cheesecake. We once had a Gentile housekeeper call us to order something for her employer—we’re still not sure how she heard about us (did she sneak a bite in her employer’s kitchen?).

What are your favorite kinds of compliments?

The unspoken ones—the smiles, the expressions; the people whose faces light up upon receiving a gourmet cheesecake. We once received an after-hours order from someone who wanted to pick it up that night—ultimately, it emerged that she had a family member who was seriously ill, and she knew that a deluxe cheesecake would lift his spirits. She later called to thank us: “You can’t imagine what it did for him.”

On another occasion, we provided cakes for a non-profit fundraising event, and the institution’s administrator called to express his gratitude: one of his main benefactors decided to triple his donation shortly after sampling our cheese miniatures—the administrator was certain that there was a connection!

These are the stories that keep us going. Our greatest joy is to use our product to enhance people’s lives. We have something good, and we want to share it.

Cappuccino Cheesecake. Coffee-lovers of the world, beware: This winning combination of cheese + everyone’s-favorite-caffeine—made with a custom 24 hour cold brew developed by an artisanal coffeemaker—is notoriously habit-forming.

Triple Decker Cheesecake. A Lilac and Crème signature special! The crowning glory of cheesecakes, this creation is a one-of-a-kind beauty. Layers of milk chocolate, cappuccino, and white chocolate are topped with sour cream and chocolate swirls, forming a feast for the eyes and celebration for the palate. An exclusive Lilac and Crème original that can never be replicated, this sinful dessert is in a class of its own.

New York-Style Cake with White Rosette Topping. A mouthwatering blend of richness and smoothness—garnished with festive, extraordinarily-tasting buttercream flowers—this creamy classic stands the test of time. Frosted with roses in the color of your choice.

Caramel Cheesecake. A perennial favorite that will never go out of style.

Chocolate Swirl Cheesecake. When premium cheese and chocolate are swirled together in a stunning, bursting-with-flavor design, how can you go wrong?

Chocolate-dipped Miniatures. Ideal for vorts, brissim, or any buffet-centered party, these tantalizing miniatures significantly ratchet up an event’s elegance count.

Cheese Florets. These fluffy dough bites bursting with fine cheese filling are simply sublime. Perfect for every occasion—from a simple snack at home to the most luxurious, formal event.

Cannoli. A cheese-filled delicacy—capped in scrumptious Viennese crunch—that brings the best of Italy right to your doorstep. A centuries-old classic.

Savarins. Inspired by the famed Parisian pastry—a rich mini yeast cake saturated in hard liquor (usually rum) and often filled with whipped cream or pastry cream—this Savarin-with-a-twist is a mini cheesecake that uses the popular Savarin mold.

See the website and order here.

Click here to view their Instagram page.






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