Vanessa O'Donnell

  • Blogs

    August 28, 2014

    The 10 Best Places for Desserts in Houston

    Sometimes you just want something sweet and when you get that sugar craving, you have to satisfy it right then and there. Baking cookies or brownies takes too long and that small piece of chocolate you have in your pantry just won't do it for you. But, there are multiple places around town serving u ... More >>

  • Blogs

    July 28, 2014

    Is "the New Cupcake" the Cupcake?

    Macarons are the "new cupcake." Or is it pie? Or how about cake balls? No, it's going to be doughnuts. But, what about popsicles? This has been the non-stop conversation over the cupcake trend since the personal-sized treats topped with a swirl of frosting became popular in the early 2000s. Despite ... More >>

  • Blogs

    May 9, 2014

    Ten Best Places in Houston to Get Your Next Cake

    It's graduation season, which means two things: Uncomfortable polyester robes and cake. Of course, I've never needed an excuse like graduation to order and then devour a custom cake (Congrats, it's Tuesday, here's a cake!), but if you need to justify your consumption, I'm sure you can think of som ... More >>

  • Dining

    March 6, 2014

    Move Over, Cupcakes

    Macarons have taken your place.

  • Blogs

    February 27, 2014

    Macarons Are the New Cupcake, But Why?

    Think back to a few years ago, when cupcakes were introduced as glamorous desserts. You probably recall that cupcake shops such as Sprinkles, Magnolia Bakery and Georgetown Cupcake became household names. As the popularity of these personal cakes (sometimes filled) topped with colorful swirls of fro ... More >>

  • Blogs

    December 2, 2011

    Chef Chat Part 3: Vanessa O'Donnell of Ooh La La Dessert Boutique

    The last two days, we've been chatting with Vanessa O'Donnell, the pastry chef and owner of Ooh La La Dessert Boutique, about how she got started in the industry and how she successfully turned an operation with a 600-square-foot kitchen, into a profitable business with three locations within the sp ... More >>

  • Blogs

    December 1, 2011

    Chef Chat, Part 2: Vanessa O'Donnell of Ooh La La Dessert Boutique

    Photo by Mai PhamVanessa O'Donnell decorating cupcakes​Yesterday, we chatted with Vanessa O'Donnell, the pastry chef who owns Ooh La La Dessert Boutique, about how she got started in the industry. Today, she tells us how she started her business and what it's like being an owner of multiple lo ... More >>

  • Blogs

    November 30, 2011

    Chef Chat, Part 1: Vanessa O'Donnell of Ooh La La Dessert Boutique

    It's amazing what Vanessa O'Donnell, pastry chef and owner of Ooh La La Dessert Boutique, has accomplished in the four short years since she opened her first location. Even more amazing is the fact that she was just 26 years old when she started, and that she did it all by herself. Barely 30 years ... More >>

  • Blogs

    May 3, 2011

    Five-Year-Old Sells $2 Lemonade for Profit on Houston Lemonade Day

    Kimberly ParkEmmy Askew selling lemonade on Houston Lemonade Day​"Would you like a free tissue flower? I made them and you can have one for free," said five-year-old entrepreneur Emmy Askew with an impish grin. She could afford to give a free gift. After all, she'd just made a handsome profit ... More >>

  • Blogs

    September 24, 2010

    Openings & Closings

    Photo by Robb WalshOyster season is permanently over for Shuck Daddy's.​Lasting only a little over a year, the not-quite-Hooters seafood spot Shuck Daddy's (1511 Shepherd) has shucked its last oyster. With Mak Chin suffering a similar fate in the same location in 2009, could it be that Houston ... More >>

  • Blogs

    July 30, 2010

    Upcoming Events

    ​Houston Restaurant Week is here once again, the annual benefit to assist the Houston Food Bank. And this year, "week" is a misnomer: Houston Restaurant Week runs from August 1 through August 21, giving you nearly an entire month to dine out at some of Houston's best restaurants, all while hel ... More >>

  • Blogs

    January 25, 2010

    Just Desserts: Wrapping Up the Cupcake Smackdown

    Photos by GroovehouseThat's a lot of cupcakes...​We lost count of the guests somewhere around the 300-person mark. The crumbs and frosting of 144 different cupcakes smeared most of the available table surfaces. Empty cups of milk and wine lay discarded across the room. And our panel of five ju ... More >>