Slideshow: When College Freshmen Cook: The Hearth Brings Underground Dining to The University of Chicago

The Hearth's Dessert Menu
The Hearth's Dessert Menu
The five-course menu featured desserts from some of the most acclaimed restaurants in the world, including Alinea, Noma, The Fat Duck, Eleven Madison Park, and The French Laundry.

First Course: Alinea – Dry caramel, salt
First Course: Alinea – Dry caramel, salt

The first course was a perfect intro for the rest of the meal-daring; different, but delicious nonetheless. This dish is hard to describe; I suppose it can be best summed up as dried caramel that gummed up in your mouth and then melted away.

Second Course: Noma - Valnødde pulver og is; Tørret fløde og tørrede bær
Second Course: Noma - Valnødde pulver og is; Tørret fløde og tørrede bær

Loose translation: Walnut ice cream with walnut and blackberry powders. The powders perfectly complemented the ice cream, making a beautifully creamy texture and intense walnut flavor.

A Surprise from 'Unaccompanied Women'
A Surprise from 'Unaccompanied Women'

On the menu for the night was a "surprise course." I figured there would be more food. Instead, giving a nod to Valentine's Day, Robert asked one of the school's a capella groups, Unaccompanied Women, to serenade us.

Fourth Course: Eleven Madison Park - Berry salad, buttermilk sorbet, balsamic meringue
Fourth Course: Eleven Madison Park - Berry salad, buttermilk sorbet, balsamic meringue

A great break to all the rich chocolate. The sorbet brightened everything up, and the fresh fruit and flowers were beautiful.

Fifth Course: The French Laundry - Chocolate Fondant with Coffee Cream and Chocolate Dentelles
Fifth Course: The French Laundry - Chocolate Fondant with Coffee Cream and Chocolate Dentelles

The final course was a thick chocolate cake. Writing this now, I hunger for it. In fact, I think I might have a dream about it tonight. It was everything chocolate should be—rich, dense, and melting down your throat.

The Hearth's Founder, Robert Lipman
The Hearth's Founder, Robert Lipman

The University of Chicago freshman first started hosting underground dinners while studying in England. You can check up his latest plans by visiting The Hearth's website.