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A La Mousse: Luxe desserts in Chinatown

The Chinatown dessert scene traditionally is oversweetened, whether it's the artificially flavored and colored baked goods or the cloyingly sugary bubble tea.

This was a problem for Anna Chen, who owns Sakura Mandarin at 11th and Race Streets and Spice 28 at 13th and Chestnut Streets with her husband, Jack.

She does not like her desserts sweet.

So with the recent departure of Audabon - the well-regarded macaron shop next door to Sakura Mandarin - Anna Chen decided to make the leap into the dessert world.

A La Mousse - which has a dozen or so cozy seats as well as a counter - is in its first couple of weeks at 145 N. 11th St. (215-238-9100).

Chen's seasonal-dessert line has a green side and gorgeous presentation.

Green Tea-r-misu layers green tea-infused mascarpone and green tea sponge cake. There's a mousse cake made with matcha tea. The Harvest appears to be a riff on the dessert known as Dirt; a flower pot is filled with layers of berries, soft cream cheese, and yogurt and topped with Oreo crumbles and served with raspberry sorbet. The lychee panna cotta and tofu kasuteri cheesecake are airy and light.

There's also a bit of a show - a sizzling matcha brownie that, well, comes out of the kitchen sizzling because of the hot plate it's served on.

The counter also has a line of tea and illy coffee.

Hours are from noon till late.