LivingTravelInside Houston: Vanessa O'Donnell, owner of the Ooh La...

Inside Houston: Vanessa O'Donnell, owner of the Ooh La La dessert boutique

Inspired by Inside Atlanta, a series created by Atlanta expert Kate Parham Kordsmeier, we’d like to introduce Inside Houston. Each month, we will interview prominent Houstonians about their favorite things to eat, see and do in the City of Bayou.

This month, we are sitting down with Vanessa O’Donnell, owner of Ooh La La Dessert Boutique. Nicknamed Houston’s Best Chef in 2012 and praised by food critics and Yelpers alike, O’Donnell and his bakeries have earned a reputation for creating some of the best cupcakes in Houston. Ooh La La offers more than 80 different types of desserts, including the popular Ultimate Chocolate Cupcake, a delicious chocolate cupcake, filled with chocolate ganache, topped with chocolate frosting and sprinkled with chocolate chunks.


I live in… “a little town west of Houston called Sealy. I grew up in Sealy so it feels like home. I like that it has the charm of a small town and the 100-year-old house we live in. «The truth is that I like the simple. I’m not complicated, so living in a small, simple town is everything.

You can find me… “at work. We own three small bakeries in the Katy / Houston area that employ 63 employees. The day and the task in question will determine where I will be that day. I try to rotate to each location at least once or twice a week. I work closely with our store managers and team leaders each day to ensure daily responsibilities are handled efficiently. And after work I spend that time with my husband and our yorkie.

I wish people knew… “There is more to see and do for newbies than people realize. There is a lot of culture and history in this city. One of my favorite things about Houston is the Houston Show and Rodeo cattle. The rodeo is over 80 years old and has something for all ages and brings in over two million people a year from all over the world. We all come from different backgrounds and areas of Houston, but the rodeo does a great job of bringing everyone together.

It’s dinner time. I’m writing to… “There are so many great options to choose from, but my favorite right now would be La Table. I love the food and the atmosphere. I love the traditional rotisserie chicken and the chocolate souffle. don’t offer chocolate souffles at Ooh La La, so it’s a pleasure to go somewhere and have someone do it for you.

The best kept secret in Houston is … »Kuhl Linscombe, located in the Upper Kirby district. It is the best buy! It has a variety of household items, furniture, gifts and apothecary. I bought a bright yellow swing about a year ago by Fermob that hangs on a 30 foot chain from a large tree in front of my house. It is absolutely one of my favorite things, and I love watching it every morning and imagining my future children swinging and having a good time with it.

When I play as a tourist, I like to go to… “The Houston Museum of Natural Sciences. I enjoy seeing the new exhibits when they come to town.

When I want to relax, I go to… “The Trellis Spa at The Houstonian for a nice facial and massage.”

My favorite place to get some fresh air in the area is… “around Memorial Park with our yorkie, Maddie”

My favorite weekend activities in the greater Houston area are… “shopping, visiting the museum, and watching Texans play during soccer season.”

I like to spend money on … “Nordstrom at the Galleria and the Kuhl Linscombe.”

What I like the most about Houston is… “The citizens of Houston are very nice and great people! We recently had a mother and her two young children who were helping. Once they got to the front of the line, the mother realized that she had forgotten her wallet. She turned to go and the gentleman behind her indicated that he would pay for her desserts. She was very grateful and told him that she would pay for it. I’ve seen this kind of thing. many times, not only in my store, but also in the city.

Houstonians are really good people!


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