This Grilled Peach-Cherry Manhattan Sundae Is an Ideal Summer Dessert

Switch up the standard hot fudge sundae with a Manhattan cocktail-inspired rendition that spotlights in-season peaches and cherries.

During the sweltering days of summer in Westchester, there’s no occasion as sweet as ice cream sundae hour during a barbecue or cookout with family and friends. It’s that time when, after noshing on hamburgers and hot dogs galore, sweet teeth of all sorts come together to savor the creamy goodness of just-scooped ice cream, maybe with a drizzle of hot fudge and a smattering of rainbow sprinkles on top.

With summer’s bounty in full swing, however, why not switch things up with a seasonal riff on everyone’s favorite summer dessert? Here, L’inizio’s Heather Fratangelo offers a Manhattan cocktail-inspired sundae that leans into the cherries and peaches of the season. She likes using local whiskey and Hudson Valley-based Crown Maple syrup, but feel free to pull from whatever you have on hand. Cherry-vanilla ice cream would also be excellent here.

Grilled Peach-Cherry Manhattan Sundaes

Serves 6

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1 lb fresh cherries, halved, pitted, and stemmed
6 medium peaches, halved and pitted
3 Tbsp butter, melted
2 Tbsp granulated sugar
½ cup maple syrup
5 Tbsp bourbon
2 pints vanilla ice cream
Shortbread or other butter-based cookies for serving

Related: Where to Dine on Summer Peaches in Westchester

peach sundae
Photo by Ken Gabrielsen


Soak wooden skewers in water for 10 minutes. Heat grill to medium heat.

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Thread cherries onto skewers. Brush cut side of peaches and cherry skewers with melted butter, and sprinkle with sugar. Place on hot grill and cook cherries for 3-4 minutes, peaches for 10-15 minutes, with the lid closed, until the fruit is tender with defined grill marks.

Whisk together maple syrup and bourbon and toss with warm cherries. To assemble sundae, place two warm peach halves in a bowl, and top with vanilla ice cream. Spoon cherry-maple-bourbon mixture over the top, drizzling sundaes with extra syrup, if desired. Serve with butter cookies.

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