Best Genre-Bending Waffle 

Third Culture Bakery

Many Bay Area cafes sell mochi muffins, Third Culture Bakery's original claim to fame. The combination of Mochiko glutinous rice flour and muffin tin resulted in a spin on Hawaiian butter mochi that has earned legions of devoted followers. The key reason to visit Third Culture's own, recently opened brick-and-mortar is to try Sam Butarbutar and Wenter Shyu's even more unique creations. There's the wonderful, refreshing, sparkling matcha tea infused with rose and lychee. Or the full array of flavored custard cakes. But the single most delicious thing is the mochi waffle. It comes out hot and so crispy that it looks borderline burnt. After taking a bite, the edges give way to a gooey chewiness that's incredibly satisfying, especially paired with espresso whipped cream. As with all of Third Culture's treats, the waffle avoids being overly sweet — and it takes a lot of resolve to not immediately order a second one.

(Sorry, no information is currently available for other years in this same award category.)

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