It is rare now to have a disappointing dessert, but it's probably just as rare to come across a dessert so rich you wonder if you can finish it. Spire's chocolate almond layer cake ($8) looked unassuming enough: a modest, dark-brown disk with a comet's tail of pitted cherry halves and streaks of caramel sauce, little embellishments that added visual texture while also implying that reinforcement was at hand should the star player be found wanting. But the cake itself was so engulfingly rich and moist, dessertdom's answer to foie gras, as to obliterate any such need. I have never had a richer, moister cake. It was so satisfying as to be nearly fatal. But I did live to tell, and now I have told.
Lunch: Tues.–Fri., 11:30 a.m.–2 p.m.
Dinner: Tues.–Thurs., 5:30–10 p.m.; Fri.-Sat., 5:30–11 p.m.
Brunch: Sun., 11 a.m.–3 p.m.
685 Third St., SF