Nothing Says “I Heart You” Like A Free Heart Cheesecake (And a View of a Pawnshop)

Heavenly Valentine's Day Junior's Cheesecake
This V-day was a very special one. Not only did it fall on a Saturday so we had all day to show our love and appreciation to each other, but we were psyched to share our love in the presence of a free, beautiful Chocolate Ganache Heart Cheesecake from Junior’s Cheesecakes in Brooklyn. When I didn’t think our love could be any stronger, polishing off a huge chunk of this rich, decadent, delicious cake proved that we can make it through anything together. Even when I rolled around on the floor in “over-stuffed” agony and whined that I ate too much Junior’s, my man was there to sympathize with me, even offering to hold my hair back if I felt the need to vomit. What a guy… what a Valentines Day.

To be honest, we really don’t celebrate Valentines Day. But when we received an email to test-drive a Junior’s mail-order cheesecake, we rethought the whole “not-celebrating” thing. Not only was the cheesecake free, but it gave us a chance to tell you all about the legendary Brooklyn eatery, Junior’s, and to decide if its mail-order cakes are just as good as the one’s down the street from us.

Junior's Restaurant - Brooklyn, NY

When I wrote “legendary eatery” I was mainly talking about the various deserts Junior’s makes in house. This is what makes this places legendary. Juniors has been around since 1948 and in the 1950’s “after serious research and laboratory-like experimentation (the owners) hit upon the secret formula for Junior’s famous cheesecake.” Sounds a bit like how the atomic bomb was created to me. Anyways, I’ll let you click the high-res version of this picture if you care to learn more.

Junior's Restaurant - Brooklyn, NY

The thing that I like most about Juniors is that it’s still there. Brooklyn is quickly shaping up to become just like every other place on earth – trying too hard to have everything appear hip, trendy and new. I’m sure there’s an area near where you live just like this – where every shop tries to be trendy, every living space is deemed “luxury” and there’s a Starbucks on every corner. The old mom and pop shops are dwindling, the wonderful, vibrant corner bodega’s are being turned into cheesy-ass one-word stores called “Sip” (wine shop – get it). In New York City there is no such thing as middle-income earners anymore. In fact, low-income housing in our area was recently defined (don’t quote me on this) as someone making less than $80,000. That’s f-ed up to me. So to know that a place like Junior’s has weathered the “yuppiefication” of our great city makes me smile.

Heavenly Valentine's Day Junior's Cheesecake

The cheesecake we received, which is the same mail-order kind you can get if you choose to order your own online was unbelievably delicious. It tasted as fresh as the slice of plain cheesecake we ate on Flatbush Ave. and DeKalb. The cheesecake was so good that it makes one wonder if the “secret formula” is crack because you just can’t stop at one bite. I highly recommend you check out Juniors here in Brooklyn. Don’t let the beautiful surroundings turn you off – dilapidated Fulton Street Mall, pawn shops galore, Applebee’s across the street and, my favorite, Mr. Fulton, a McDonald’s knock-off with a similar-shaped building and logo, is only a block ahead.

Near Junior's Restaurant - Brooklyn, NY Mr Fulton - Brooklyn, NY
Signs Outside of Junior's Restaurant - Brooklyn, NY Heavenly Valentine's Day Junior's Cheesecake

But if you can’t join us in Brooklyn and you’re hankering for a fabulous version of their cakes and pies, please do not hesitate to order your own, even if it’s not Valentines Day.

32 thoughts on “Nothing Says “I Heart You” Like A Free Heart Cheesecake (And a View of a Pawnshop)

  1. I’ve heard many things about Juniors, but haven’t had a chance to try their cheesecake yet. I do love places with history though and it sound like there’s a reason this place has been around so long.

  2. The other great thing about Junior’s is that there is ALWAYS at least one jackass double-parked in front of it, creating a perpetual bottleneck on Flatbush.

    Their cheesecake is good, but my Mom’s recipe is better. To be fair, though, I don’t have a heart-shaped springform pan.

  3. What a tasty Valentine’s Day treasure.

    I love a good neighborhood institution. I’m fortunate to have a couple of those still remaining in my area. I go nuts when my very mom-and-pop-dominated neighborhood takes on another chain. You would not believe the schadenfreude I felt when Starbucks (that had the nerve to open right next to a coffee shop) that opened just recently was one of the many shops to get the ax when Starbucks started closing many of its stores.

  4. hi Joan;
    thank god junior’s never closed. Lundys reopened about five years ago at the same location. it was renovated but the ladies’ lounge (where I would go to sneak a cigarette during dinner when i was l4) remains intactalthough I think they repainted the walls from the old pistachio green. remember the fantastic waiters? they still serve the wonderful biscuits and the menu is basically the same but somehow it seemed touristy and i only returned once. if you are in brooklyn however, it’s worth a trip to the past and then there’s always junior’s for dessert. too bad they closed the automat which was across the street from juniors, not to mention mccrory’s and their fresh popcorn.

  5. I don’t know what I’m doing wrong, but I never get asked to review any foods or products. Maybe it’s because I always denounce the schilling. Maybe it’s because I can’t stop the cussing.

  6. peter – i totally laughed out loud when i read your comment. i think i’ve spent a total of 18 hours of my life cursing at those jackasses double-parked. they cause 80% of the traffic on flatbush ave. i’m convinced. it’s SOOOOOOO friggin annoying.

    rachel – your comment made me so happy. i love the thought of starbucks closing down. it makes me laugh my “evil laugh” – whaaa haaahaaa haaaaaa.

    claudia – thank you for the wonderful comment. i love hearing from hometown people who remember the good old days. how cool you were a little 14 year old badass sneaking smokes! i’m telling your parents.

    heather – you are a badass, maybe that’s why vendors are scared to see what you’d write about their product. kidding – but i do not post reviews of things that sucked. we received a few things that were just SO bad, i thought negative publicity when they spent money shipping me products was just not right. i think that since we bought our own domain name we’ve been asked to try things more. you prob. get the same traffic as us (if not more), so i have no idea. is your email address obviously listed on your site?

  7. The idea of that cheesecake alone makes me swoon. And I was actually born in Brooklyn too. But tell me, what’s up with the little chef’s head? It looks like he’s just shit himself or something. Or is really embarrased about a mistake? Ken

  8. I loveee the chocolate chips on the sides. The whole cake is so pretty. I’m not the biggest cheesecake fan in the world, but when there’s chocolate involved, I tend to be able to eat a whole lot of it!

  9. Hey all!

    marie; hilarious! who knew juniors sold on qvc!

    sue: i loved the choc. chips too. in fact, the end piece was what i wanted just for that reason.

    nicole, i just checked and it is 9 inches. but, believe me, you only need a 3 inch piece to be very, very satisfied!

  10. The cake looks great. I’m not so much a cheesecake fan, but I am a fan of the old restaurants that weather the storm, make it through all the changes in economy and neighborhoods and still manage to hold on to their identity and serve up something tasty and unique. Long live Junior’s! And others like it.

  11. Hey, Ive been eating that cheesecake for 3 days–Its deelish but definitely rich and yummy– I think its going straight to my thighs- but who cares

  12. Wow does that cheesecake look good! I’ll have to visit some friends in Brooklyn and ask them to bring me to Junior’s. I can’t wait to check out those decadent desserts and take one out to enjoy at home with my favorite java, mmm.

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