The perfect mousse as described by David Lebovitz, a pastry chef based in San Francisco, is "a perfect slightly-gummy texture, backed up by a wallop of pure dark chocolate flavor." At Bistrot Lepic in Georgetown, they have put together something that is really close to that description. I very much enjoyed what came off as a light dessert to me, with both a great whipped texture as well as a strong chocolate flavor. Hidden inside were a few pieces of milk chocolate that added a nice crunch to the very smooth and satisfying treat. Not to mention the light cookie/wafer on top that could be used as a dipping tool and an edible fork.
While not a typical order of mine, I have always enjoyed mousse, although, I never truly understood the distinction between it and pudding. I'm sure Mr. Lebovitz would be highly offended by my previous assumption that a classic French delicacy was as commonplace and simple as something bought on grocery shelves and served in cafeterias. Nonetheless, I learned of my error, and now have a true appreciation for the smooth creamy flavor that a well prepared mousse inevitably possesses. Mousse must be moist, but appear and taste light and airy. A great pastry chef can make that difficult task a reality.
I will continue to seek out other places throughout DC that serve this dessert well, but if you are in the mood, you will not be disappointed by Bistrot Lepic. Both a restaurant and wine bar, it provides a dual atmosphere for an evening of culinary delight. Make sure you stop by, sample some of the large selection of wine, and grab a little mousse before you leave... You won't be upset that you did!
1736 Wisconsin Ave. NW
Washington, DC 20007
Google map & reviews (4/5)
Washington Post (Editors' Pick; Reader 4/4)
Washington City Paper (4/5)
Tripadvisor (DC rank: 60; 4/5)