Tag Archives: cupcake

The Little Cupcake Bakeshop.

Date of excursion: 10.15.11

Fall fell and boy, did the Little Cupcake Bakeshop smell [good]! Carried over by wafts of frosting and cake batter, the Gang landed at this little SoHo shop – a new dawn, new day, and new cupcakery awaiting us. Even our pal, Mochi, tagged along!

First up: Chocolate Cloud (chocolate base, vanilla meringue frosting)

Wow! Both a cloud and a good cupcake, especially considering the tough reputation chocolate bases have around these parts. And it was vegetarian*, to boot!

This little cake was fudgy but not overpowering, and the meringue added a light, airy sweetness. Even Lemon Meringue was impressed!

“Even I’m impressed,” she said.

You heard it here first, folks.

Next up: Vanilla Chocolate (vanilla base, chocolate frosting)

“This looks like childhood,” Cappuccino Swirl said, while beating on a bongo. She’s cool.

“Do you think this is white cake or yellow?” Mochi asked. An interesting point! White cakes are, indeed, whiter, and contain no egg yolks. This cake somehow seemed to be a hybrid between the two, though, with a firm, cornbread-like texture –

“Stop saying words,” Vanilla barked. A calm overcame us. (But for those playing at home, the answer is “probably yellow.”)

The chocolate frosting on this cupcake was quite chocolatey, but again, not in an overpowering way. Granted, the flavor could have been more complex, but it emitted a warmth and delight that, indeed, evoked memories of childhood**. And elementary school bake sales.

Next up: Pumpkin (pumpkin base, maple frosting)

“I’m pumped for this pumpkin,” Choco-Choco Chip said. Mochi slapped her.

The inside of this cake was nice and orangey, just like pumpkin cake should be. But the taste? Quite underwhelming – not nearly as much pumpkin flavor and spice as the color implies.

And now, the frosting – the amazingly-awesomely-spectacular maple frosting. Is there a bar that serves this exclusively? If so, sign us up for double-shot Tuesdays! (And Wednesdays through Mondays.) … Please?

Next up: The Dreaming Princess (almond cake with raspberry filling, meringue frosting)

Well, well, well, hello filling! The components to this cupcake, while each individually delicious, combined forces to create a mega-force of taste. The raspberry added a bright note to the buttery cake, and the light meringue finished it nicely. Dreaming princess? Dream on! This princess is an extremely successful rock star with a busy social life and lots of popularity.

New York Citttaay!” Vanilla exclaimed. Yes.

So! While the Little Cupcake Bakeshop left much to be desired in terms of pumpkin flavor (and logo design), they still delivered delightful deliciousness. Their specialty cupcakes are well thought-out, and their classic cupcakes, while slightly bake sale-like, are tasty.

The happiest of holidays to you, LCB! We would wish you stockings filled with cupcakes, but why waste a good cupcake by getting it all … socky?

*Marshmallow-free is the way to be.

**Every Gang member’s childhood was cupcakes (only).

Locations:

Little Cupcake Bakeshop
30 Prince Street
New York, NY 10012
Phone: 212-941-9100
Hours: Monday – Friday 7:30am – 11pm
Saturday and Sunday 8am – 11pm

9102 Third Avenue
Brooklyn, New York 11209
Phone: 718-680-4465
Hours: Monday – Friday 7am – 11pm
Saturday and Sunday 8am – 11pm

Average cost of cupcake: $3.00

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Tulu’s Gluten-Free Bakery.

Date of excursion: 06.07.10

Summer is upon us! And boy what a summer it is.

Feelin’ hearty, healthy and  contentious, the two arch nemeses, Choco-Choco Chip and Vanilla, decided to truce for the evening in the name of all cupcakes.

V.S.

(Unfortunately, Gangrades Cappuccino Swirl and Lemon Meringue were not able to join them in holy cakerimony that day.)

The calming, pastel-filled atmosphere of Tulu’s Gluten-Free Bakery called to us like a phone to the phoned. As we made our way in, an owl hooted from a nearby cupcake tree.

“Stop that!” Vanilla growled.

The owl showed no remorse.

Aha! Another chance to dance with our friend, the mini-cupcake, eh? Lovely to make your second acquaintance, mes petits. Although, we must say, readers, that while the flavor choice seemed abundant for our miniature friends, the flavor choices for our larger ones left much to be desired. Namely, more flavor choices.

“Where the choco at?!” Choco-Choco Chip foamed. Vanilla snickered to the side. To no one … at all.

After much debate, much hesitation, and much salivation, we decided on our flavors, and prepared for the glorious potlatch* that was about to commence.

Figure this out: Chocolate Vanilla Cream Cheese

(Blur-tastic image brought to you by Hungry Bowels, the makers of the Impatient Gluttons II: Air Force Mach Four.)

A new frosting flavor in our midst! Vanilla + Cream Cheese? That sounds like a Choco-Choco Chip paradox — all the hate of hatred plus all the goodness of Philadelphia? Could this be real?

Indeed it could be, cupcakers. The frosting was miraculous — light, whipped, fresh, but with all the density and soury-sweet goodness that cream cheese lovers adore. Its chocolate base had a nice grit within its overall moistness, adding texture and depth to an otherwise bland cake. The grit absolved the bland in this tale about Chocolate “Precious” Vanilla Cream Cheese Jones — a sweet kid, a little crumbly around the edges, but with a heart of gold and lots of love and encouragement** from her peers. And she’s been off gluten all this whole time.

We double dare you: Vanilla Strawberry

Another new frosting! Tulu’s, Tulu’s, Tulu’s. You crafty, crafty, crafters.

[“Proud to Be an American” musical interlude.]

Light, whipped, and fresh again! This strawberry frosting knew what it was doing. Vanilla argued that the strawberry taste was strong, but this is comin’ from a cake that don’t like no strawberries. For Choco-Choco Chip, the taste wasn’t as strong, and the after-taste left a nice, melony, strawberry-type-o’-feelin’. The base complemented this frosting well — all while being free o’ gluten! In sum: the happy pink frosting matched the happy pink walls which matched our Happy Pink Sentiments.***

Wh-wh-what would you do?: Chocolate Peanut-Butter

And yet another new frosting flavor! Can you say Funtrepeneur of the Century?*****  Nutty, airy frosting, light, earthy consistency — Tulu’s doesn’t try to mask the essence of peanut in this little number. It’s bold, raw, and out there. And very delicious.

(500) Days of: Red Velvet

Upon cutting into this baby******, we realized that, no matter what this tasted like, it was no true red velvet. The color inside resembled more of a rusty iron, if anything.

“If your name was Dustin, would you go by Dusty?”*******

“…………… no.”

Yes. A rusty iron color, indeed.

Wow! What a fantastic texture all around (although not very chocolatey, as we should have expected from mini # 1). But with cake so moist and cream cheese icing so wonderous, this cupcake represented a wonderful example of commensalism — the cake was greatly improved by his cheesier ally, while the cream cheese icing could have probably ran a few solo laps around the ol’ red stumparoo. But all in all, a great take on a classic flavor combination. ********

So, what to conclude? Our experiences with gluten-free cupcake products have not been totally tainted.  Tulu’s Gluten-Free Bakery represented the true combined strengths of frosting and texture, and how a Manhattanite coeliac need not live in a world without cupcakes. For that, friends, is something that we shant even wish upon our greatest enemies.

*(1) A celebration held by some Native Americans, during which the host gives away gifts in accordance with each guest’s social status. The feast may entail destruction of sprinkles and wrappers for rivalry groups. (2) A synonymn for “feast,” re: thefreedictionary.com .

**You get ’em!

***Available for purchase.****

****But not from us.

*****Do not attempt this on Wall Street.

******A PERSONIFICATION.

*******Dusty : Dustin :: Rusty : ________

********Otherwise known as a “cake-take.”

Location:

338 East 11th Street
New York, NY 10003
(212) 777-2227

Hours:

Mon-Thu 10:30am-10pm, Fri-Sat 10:30am-10:30pm, Sun 10:30am-9pm

Average cost of cupcake: $3.00

REVISITED: The Cupcake Cafe.

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Date of excursion: 10.10.09

New addition: Indeed, Cupcake Colleagues! We would like to present you with a new installation to our extensive cupcake-reviewing process — revisitation. We’ll be sporadically revisiting ghosts of cupcakes past in order to provide you with the most up-to-date, representative, and abridged analyses of your favorite (and not-so favorite) treats.
“… Does that place still sell that cupcake?!”
“… Are the prices still the same?!”
“… How has the service changed over the years?!”
Answers to these questions (and more!) in our new “Revisited” series!

***

The Cupcake Cafe, take two, eh? Our stomachs were prepared for what we deemed to be one of the more delicious cupcakes/cupcake-eating atmospheres we’ve encountered in our happy trails.

But we couldn’t just slap a “Revisited” on you without some style.

That’s right, ladies and gentleboys, it is time for the long-awaited, [twelfth of a] feature-length documentary on yours truly: the Cupcake Gang. (Directed by resident Francis Ford Cupcake-ola-expert, Choco-Matzo.*)

“Look at that depth of field!”

(Shut up, Vanilla.)

So we arrived at the Cupcake Cafe (forks ready) and chose our flavors — flavors of which have now come to be known as staples in the Cupcake Community**: chocolate vanilla, chocolate chocolate, vanilla chocolate, and, once again, the sultry stylings of the holy maple walnut.

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A Machiavellian cupcake clerk soured the mood of sweet consumption/filmmaking at once. She may have had good intentions, but her ability to instill fear into a Gang as tough as ours was astounding — so we bowed our heads in sorrow for her disdain for the visual arts (and probably puppies).

“The cahsier was nicer last time,” someone muttered.

He sure was.

And so we sat down at a lovely table (adorned with highly-appropriate rat-rabbit hybrid designs), and began our second take on the Cupcake Cafe.

First in the spotlight***: Chocolate Vanilla.

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Not a bad choice at all, cupcake fans. Cut nicely, and a welcome addition to our previous experiences with bad chocolate vanillas.**** But, then again, even though it was good, it’s still nothing to write Gramma about.

Second up: Vanilla Chocolate.

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That beautiful cut! That icing! That moist cake! That exquisite flower! And the way it just melted in your mouth and —

“Can we eat the next one now?” Lemon Meringue mhehw-ed.***** (The movie lights and Hollywood fame were getting the best of our patience.)

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Third up: Chocolate Chocolate.

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Oh, dear.

This cupcake was twelve different kinds of scary.

“The pollen on the flower looks like bird feces,” Choco-Choco Chip noted.

“It looks more like a coccoon,” Cappuccino Swirl replied.

“…. Lemon Meringue hates snails,” Vanilla added.

And not only was its appearance offsetting, folks. But the taste — oh how it crumbled over everything in sight! How it failed to cohesively blend into a medley of chocolate depth and ecstasy in the mouth! How the icing was just so plum[b] melty! The camera crew almost buckled over in tears at the sight of a cupcake gone so terribly wrong (but they couldn’t, owing to the fact that insurance is costly and does not cover NaCl and lysozyme tear-seepage into equipment).

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We can only hope that you, the Cupcake Craving Public, should never experience the chocolate-squared travesty we experienced at that moment. (And we suppose it’s not completely your fault, Choco-Choco Chip.)

Fourth up: Maple Walnut.

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Oh!******

There are no words.

There are too many words.

No! There are words — “this cupcake is delicious,” to be precise.

We can only thank the Lords of Film (and Cupcakes, of course) that this glorious gift to all of Cupcakedom was documented on film. Still images alone cannot capture its mapley goodness.

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What an informative revisit! Laughter (maple walnut), tears (Machiavelli), and plenty of crumbs (Chocolate Chocolate).

With that said, we hereby extend not just a wonderous, frosting-coated “thank you” to Choco-Matzo and Company for handling our delicate evaluation process with such care, but also a cordial invitation to join the Cupcake Gang on any upcoming journeys through fiery pits of brimstone, soot, and grime — all in the hopes of discovering the best cupcakes in the world (or just New York).

In conclusion:

Look before you leap.

Party hearty.

And eat cupcakes.

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“… we were being filmed?!” Vanilla roared.

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*And his swift n’ sassy crew of cupcake trainees: Tres “the Pinto Bean” Leches, Tiramisu, and Colombian Coffee.

**A prosperous society of peoples just outside of Simsbury, Connecticut.

***Hip and showbizzy diction!

****Vanilla and Choco-Choco chip are rumored to share a cousin — Chocolate Vanilla. Choco-Choco Chip has demanded a cousinternity test.

*****Think of a cat’s face. Think of a sour cat’s face. Think of the type of “meow” it would make. That’s what this noise is.

******One shot?!

Tonnie’s Minis.

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Date of excursion: 09.12.09

Hunger chords were a-rumblin’ and a-tumblin’, and the Gang had only one thing in mind: falafel.

Psyche!  It was cupcakes.

And the Lords of Cupcakery bestowed on us a new, close-by location with which to feast our mouths upon — a little-known gem called Tonnie’s Minis.

Minis?!” Vanilla growled.

Yes.  Minis.

But, as we soon discovered, these Minis were not so mini after all  (leading us to wonder: what would the Jolly Green Giant look like at Tonnie’s?).

Our first decision was whether or not we wanted Hollywood-themed cupcakes. What did this even mean?!

“We’re out of Hollywood cupcakes.  Some NYU kids just came in and bought the last of them,” said Amicable* Associate.

(A potential second Cupcake Gang?!  Curse you, NYU!  [And see you in class on Monday!])

We got our pickers out and began a-pickin’ from the ripe and luscious crop before us.  And soon enough, it was time to scarf and swill like nobody’s business.

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First up, Chocolate Vanilla (chocolate base, vanilla frosting).

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This may have been the easiest cut in Cupcake Gang History!**  Plates, knives, salt and pepper… Well, needless to say, Mother Nature was pleased that night.

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Presentation-wise, these cupcakes almost looked storebought, but taste-wise, they could have bought the store themselves!  Or at least a farm.

“The vanilla complements the chocolate cake so well,” Choco-Choco Chip noted.  “Unlike other Vanillas we know.”

“Freakin’ good!” Vanilla squealed, unable to take the hint.

“Amazing,” was the general consensus on this dark chocolate cake batter.

Next up, Lemon.  (Did someone say “child support”, Lemon Meringue?)

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With a yellowy tint that could only represent that classic lemon taste, we began to engorge ourselves.

A little to the left, oh yeah, that’s it.  Now pose like you’re waiting for a bus.***

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A very sweet little cupcake.  Literally.  Not necessarily personality-wise.  (We didn’t get much time for small-talk.)

“It tastes like an Amy’s Christmas spongecake with the lemon icing, only better.”

“The chunks of lemon zest.  They’re singin’ to me.”

“It’s like drinkin’ Mama’s Lemonade.  Country Time, not that Minute Maid bullsh–”

— Whoa, there!

Next up: Chocolate Chocolate (chocolate base, chocolate frosting).

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This cupcake looked like a black tie event, and cut like a bloomin’ onion — both qualities of which the Gang reveres.

“Very smooth icing.”

“It condenses in your mouth.”

“It’s so moist, that I’m not even thirsty,” Cappuccino Swirl jived.

All wise words to describe this little diddy.

“Does this taste so good just because I’m hungry now?” Choco-Choco Chip wondered.

“No!” Vanilla foamed.

Next up: Marble! (vanilla AND chocolate base, chocolate frosting)

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“This is messy chic.”

“Such rich frosting!”

“It has a certain lemony sourness…”

“You mean, ‘acid?'” Gail Simmons probably chimed in.

So, it seemed that this cupcake represented fashion-forwardness and high levels of eatability — but let us not forget that, above everything else, this cupcake made a great deal of personal sacrifice in order to honorably unify two flavors previously engaged in murderous conflict.  Caught up in the swell of emotions, Vanilla and Choco-Choco Chip decided to call a truce.  (And then Vanilla fell asleep, briefly.)****

And, finally: Coconut (vanilla base, vanilla frosting, shredded coconut topping).

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“Oh, wow.  The icing is melty,” Cappuccino Swirl said.

“It has a lemon taste,” Lemon Meringue bragged.

(We get it, Lemon Meringue.)

“I want more…” Vanilla fumed.  We all did.  “Is that a beagle outside?” Vanilla continued.

Amazing!  What surprisingly moist cake we found in all of our tastings that night, despite having arrived at the end of the day!  Eight thumbs way up, Tonnie’s.

And, so:

Five cupcakes.

Four friends.

Probably three or two laughs.

And one satisfying evening with not-so-mini Minis from Tonnie’s.

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*Can we please talk for a second about how amiable and amicable only differ by one letter, but they mean the same thing?

**A hulking, cumbersome tome dating back to the late 14th century.

***The Cupcake Gang is an avid anti-advocate of Lemon Meringue’s camera, as well as Ashton Kutcher.

****Look for V56.028.003 during your next course registration term — we’ll be teaching a seminar on Poly-Cakes.

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Tonnie’s Minis

Location:

120 W 3rd St. (Mac Dougal St. and W 3rd St.)

212.473.2002

Average Cost: 4 for $8.50

Butter Lane.

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Date of excursion: 09.07.09

After a horrific misunderstanding over school‘s “in” or “out” status, a blessing in disguise was made, and the Cupcake Gang could once again reunite on sacred New York soil.

And it was there, beneath the blue urban skies, cupcakes were in our ears, and in our eyes.  So to Butter Lane we went.

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And what a glorious Lane it was!  Hip wallpaper!  Frosting shots!  And what’s this?  Choose-your-own-cake-and-frosting combination?  Gadzooks!

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The Gang immediately congregated in front of the Holy Blackboard of Choices.  Kindly Clerk presided as a witness.

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And so the decision process began.  A banana base?!  A four-for-eleven special?!  French chocolate icing?!

“– uh, we’re out of french chocolate icing.”*

… a four-for-eleven special?!  This place was insane!

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After finally constructing our list, we scavenged for seating.  We could foursie a bench, but that would provide minimal face-to-face cupcake discussion.  We could sit outside, but then we’d risk being mobbed by slews of anti-cupcake legions.  So, we opted for the best we could do: the stool and rocking chair in the corner, complete with coffee table accessory.  (And two of us sat on the floor.)

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“Looks effin’ delicious,” everyone said, seemingly in unison.

First up: Chocolate Cream-Cheese (chocolate base, cream-cheese icing)

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“Crumbles.”

Under the steady hands of Dr. Choco-Choco Chip, the chocolate-base cake began to crumble (specifically, into crumbles).  The Gang then doctored* a letter of apology to the family and friends of said butchered base.

“The cream cheese sticks everything together,” Choco-Choco Chip happily noted, whilst consuming the cupcake.

Silence.

“… I feel like God,” Cappuccino Swirl said.

And then that funky*** tune just kept playing.

Next up: Vanilla Coconut (vanilla base, coconut icing)

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Having to switch blades to make the incision in our more vanilla-based base, we realized that whatever chemistry goes on in that Sacred Oven makes vanilla cake crazy-easier to cut than chocolate cake.

“Nice slicin’!” Cappuccino Swirl remarked.  ” … Coconut is crunchy.”

Too delicious for words.

Next up: Chocolate Maple Pecan (chocolate base, maple pecan icing)

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“Uh, hey, are you guys still open?” Rando-Trouser-Travelers said, upon entering the very-much-open establishment.

“We are, indeed, open,” said Kindly Clerk.

Choco-Choco Chip wiped her brow.  The music pace made for a dramatic incision.

After the ceremonial chomp, then came the ceremonial lick o’ fingers.

“So good.”

“This tastes like a Vermont vacation,” Choco-Choco Chip noted.

“What’s that?” Vanilla asked.  “… this is my favorite of cupcake places.”

A good maple pecan can do that to you, Nills.

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A good maple pecan.

The moist pockets of chocolate inside did, indeed, complement the mapley Canadian goodness that was the icing.  And boy, did those pockets sure get under our fingernails.****

Lastly: Vanilla Honey Cinnamon (vanilla base, cinnamon icing with a pool of honey)

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Choco-Choco Chip dipped the wooden dagger into the golden pool of honey, only to be met by the vanquishing powers of the last cupcake standing.  And so our cutting skewer broke.

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Tough love, VHC.   (But no splinters!)

“This tastes like an Eggo Cinnamon Toast waffle,” Choco-Choco Chip noted.

Vanilla agreed, and promptly collapsed onto the floor in joy.

“I mean, it’s not my favorite, but I don’t like that cinnamon kind of spicy taste,” Cappuccino Swirl said.

“Then why’d we get it?!” Vanilla demanded.

Silence.

“… I like waffles.”

So, all in all, Butter Lane proved to be a hip, happenin’, organic, and un-crowded place for a very satisfying cupcake bite on a otherwise not-as-satisfying Labor Day evening.  Perhaps a bit skimpy on the seating arrangements, but our Lemon Meringue begged to differ: “The rocking chair alone makes up for it.”

We entered hungry, and left drunk on deliciousness.

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Butter Lane: in our ears, eyes, and now our stomachs.

*Much appreciated Kindly Clerk!  He [kindly] notified us about this icing’s M.I.A. status amidst the decision-making process, rather than allowing us to finalize our list only to be crushed by the heavy hand of sugary demand.

**Get it?

***Not funky as in “malodorous,” but as in, “it’s got a wank to it.”

****Fun tip: in anticipation of cupcake-ing, one should probably clip one’s fingernails.  Much like when one eats Indian food.

Butter Lane

123 East 7th Street (between 1st Ave and Avenue A)

(212) 677-2880

Average cost of Cupcake: $3.00

Hours:

Mon-Thu 11am-11pm; Fri-Sat 11am-12am; Sun 12pm-10pm

Jilly’s Cupcake Bar. (St. Louis, MO)

The cupcake gang may have parted ways for the summer, but that doesn’t mean the prowl for cupcake goodness ends at the borders of Manhattan.

Lemon Meringue returned to her native land of St. Louis still with the fresh scent of cake, frosting, and sprinkles in her nose. If St. Louis has created such greats as Chuck Berry, Nelly (…riding in a Range Rover), and Toasted Ravioli, it must also be the place for delicious cupcakes.

Since it opened in July 2007, Lemon Meringue has been eye-ing the polkadot and white front of Jilly’s Cupcake Bar, nestled on the corner of I-70 and Delmar. Her fascination with the place started even before her induction into the gang. Gourmet cupcake bakeries here are as uncommon as non-St. Louisans knowing about St. Paul sandwiches.

Lemon Meringue and her cousin, Cousin Meringue, were on their way to their grandmother’s house when they decided to stop by Jilly’s to try the cupcakes. They walked into a pleasant shop where Lemon Meringue and the cupcakes were separated by bullet-proof glass. No one can be too sure about what will happen when non-threatening threatening cupcake gang members have the right to bear arms.

After much deliberation, Lemon Meringue and Cousin Meringue settled on the cookie monster cupcake and the red velvet. The cupcakes are $4.25 each, which is quite a hefty price. However, the cupcakes had quite the attractive exterior–Jilly’s knows how to present their cupcakes right. Lemon Meringue and Cousin Meringue hoped the interior would be worth it.

They arrived at their grandma’s house and met up with Cousin Key Lime who brought lunch. Their grandma had recently fractured her arm; so doing everyday things had become harder for her. Before any eating or cupcake consumption could happen, Lemon Meringue and fam had some cleaning to do, and boy, did grannie leave them a nasty kitchen.

The laborious work of ridding the kitchen tile of its grease stains was done, and then it was on to lunch. After an appetizing meal, it was time for what Lemon Meringue lived for: cupcake consumption.

Cousin Meringue quartered the cookie monster cupcake. The vanilla cake was fluffy and sweet. Lemon Meringue was expecting the frosting to be hard, but it was just as soft as the cake. Cousin Meringue described it as buttery. Although Lemon Meringue is quite the sour one, she admits to having a soft spot for soft rock. So she would describe the frosting as silky smooth like Peter Frampton’s “Baby, I Love Your Way.”

“This cookie half looks like a Pac Man.”

If the cake was money, it’d be $2.12. If the frosting was money, it’d be $2.13. Altogether that cookie monster was worth every penny.

On to the red velvet.

After Cousin Meringue prepared the red velvet cupcake for consumption, Lemon Meringue held her slice in her hand with wariness. She openly expressed that she might be disappointed again, especially after having had that Red Velvet cupcake from Crumbs, “which tasted a lot like sucking on a penny.” Nevertheless Lemon Meringue ate the cupcake with an open mind.

“What does this one taste like? A quarter?” asked Cousin Key Lime.

If by quarter she was referring to George Washington’s warning against partisanship in his Farewell Address, then yes, the red velvet cupcake tasted like a quarter. The actual cake in all its red glory was neither good nor bad, but something to munch on. (Lemon Meringue has come to the conclusion that perhaps she doesn’t really know what red velvet is supposed to taste like or just doesn’t care for it.) Fortunately, the frosting made up for the cake’s neutrality. Hidden inside the cake was a brown surprise of what seemed to be caramel. After, finishing off the red velvet, Lemon Meringue noticed the taste of cheesecake. This cupcake was quite the Puppy Surprise.

In upholding the ideals of the cupcakeocracy, Jilly’s Cupcake Bar has done it’s honorable duty right in the heart of Middle America. Good cupcakes. Good surprises. Good times.

Surprise! It’s the S’murtle.

Jilly’s Cupcake Bar:

8509 Delmar Boulevard in St. Louis, MO
314.993.JILLY (5455)

http://www.jillyscupcakebar.com/

Average cost of cupcake: $4.25

Hours:
Monday – Friday: 10am – 7pm ; Lunch served: 11am – 2pm
Brunch/Lunch served Saturday: 9am – 2pm ; Sunday: 9am-4pm

Whole Foods Market.

Date of Excursion: 3.8.08

The gang headed over to Cappuccino Swirl and Choco-Choco Chip’s box. They decided to play “Name That Dorm Room”, “Name X Amount Of Countries That Start With The Letter I’m About To Give You” (“name” pronounced “neighm” [in an “uptalk” manner]), and “What Would You Do With $1,000?”. For the last game, Cappuccino Swirl wanted a fancy hotel; Choco-Choco Chip wanted a jacket (and approximately $950); Lemon Meringue wanted filmmaking equipment; Vanilla wanted to analyze the modern-day effects of the century-old notion of “Orientalism” in Japan. The room was abuzz. After Vanilla collapsed from all of the excitement, the gang decided it was time to mosey on down to to get some cupcakes, for a good, old-fashioned cupcake boogie-down.

The gang decided to evaluate the cupcakes of local grocery stores. But which store to pick? It was a regular case of Goldilocks and the Three Bears: Forever 21 was quite warm, and apparently only sold clothes; Trader Joe’s was closed, and could only be reached after trudging through the cold rain; the only other options, it seemed, were Food Emporium and Whole Foods.

The decision was tough. To expedite the process, the gang decided to undergo mitosis, and split up. Cappuccino Swirl and Lemon Meringue stayed at Whole Foods, while Choco-Choco Chip and Vanilla (enemies) went to Food Emporium. After a heated debate, some bloodshed, and the reconcilatory exploding high fives, the gang decided to buy the Whole Foods cupcakes. The porridge was just right.

After the cupcakes (Vanilla Vanilla and Chocolate Chocolate) were purchased, it was again time to head back to Cappuccino Swirl and Choco-Choco Chip’s box (owner Mrs. Haversham).

And surprise-surprise-puppy-surprise, a bottle of sparkling lemonade suddenly appeared! This was sure to be a feast for kings.

After opening the cupcake boxes, we soon realized how relevant Plessy vs Ferguson still was to this day.

But nonetheless, we decided to dive on in. We toasted: “Un brindis para el mundo” (enunciated heavily).

We tried to eat Vanilla Vanilla and Chocolate Chocolate in one bite. It was wild.

We found ourselves a bit saddened by the fact that, at Whole Foods, we could only choose between Vanilla Vanilla and Chocolate Chocolate. So what did the creative, crafty, cool, clever, cunning, and attractive cupcake gang do? We began to contemplate what vanilla/chocolate and chocolate/vanilla babies would look like. How would this even be accomplished? Via a squishing mechanism*? Via transplant**?

After choosing the latter strategy, we finally decided to operate. We dipped into the box o’ knives in order to surgically manipulate their phenotypical data. Dr. Choco-Choco Chip made a seamless incision (you know, her father always wanted her to go to medical school). And what did Dr. Frankenstein create (after several clumps of frosting falling– due to the whispery, panda-ness of the Vanilla, especially)? None other than Vanilla Chocolate and Chocolate Vanilla.

The sinister music began to play.

After consuming these, and noting the surprisingly urine-like appearance of the sparkling lemonade, we concluded that perhaps the grocery industry may be good for the overall purpose of feeding one’s family, but when it comes to the noble cause of delicious cupcakes, it falls slightly flat. Don’t get us wrong– the cupcakes were not toxic. They were not made of rat droppings. They did not have the consistency of sand. However, the general rule seems to be: eat one, leave the rest for another time. Perhaps for a tea luncheon with your nanny and/or posse.

Or maybe our somewhat negative feelings are simply a result of the fact that the mass produced may simply not mesh with the our delicate pallettes. But seeing as how we of the [threatening] non-threatening Cupcake Gang are just like you viewers out there, and we consequently have similar, tolerant pallettes, this is unlikely. We apologize, Whole Foods. It’s not your fault that, as a grocery store, you cannot focus all of your energies onto cupcakes (even though they are a staple food).

Overall

Vanilla Vanilla

Cappuccino Swirl: Vanilla Vanilla. Not harmonious with my pallette.

Choco-Choco Chip: The vanilla icing was VERY stong and VERY sweet. Unlike the Vanilla we know.

Lemon Meringue: The frosting was a bright white.

Vanilla: Dey so kute. 2cayoote.

Chocolate Chocolate

Cappuccino Swirl: The swirl of the forsting was jivin’ to Cappuccino Swirl’s taste. Smooth.

Choco-Choco Chip: The cake was a bit crummy (PUN 100% INTENDED, dizzle). The icing was luxurious-ish. BAM.

Lemon Meringue: The frosting was nice and the chocolate cake was what you’d expect from a mass-produced cupcake.

Vanilla: One effin’ bite.

Vanilla Chocolate (Vanilla icing, Chocolate cake)

Cappuccino Swirl: Sha-bam-jazz. I was not lost in the chocolatey smoothness.***

Choco-Choco Chip: I don’t like when my icing tries to kidnap my mouth. I want my mouth to feel whatever it wants. This icing didn’t let me feel. And the cake? Can you say “sub-par carnival?”

Lemon Meringue: I’ll leave the commentary about this chocolate-vanilla cupcake to Choco-Choco Chip and Vanilla. Because I can.

Vanilla: Integration of people: good. Integration of cupcakes: maybe not.

Chocolate Vanilla (Chocolate icing, Vanilla cake)

Cappuccino Swirl: Too much for Cappuccino Swirl. ‘Nough for now.

Choco-Choco Chip: The icing was delightful–but I liken the cake to Bobby Brady from “the Brady Bunch”– seemingly innocent, but actually a tad disgusting, perverted, and childish.

Lemon Meringue: I won’t leave commentary to Choco-Choco Chip and Vanilla. This was a successful experiment in integration.

Vanilla: What did I just eat?

*A squishing mechanism, also known as a distal glucose compression, involves fusing two cupcakes together via their own respective icings. The result is a mass of cupcake, very similar to what a Now 16! CD looks like (if we knew what a Now! CD was). Sometimes, swanky music accompanies a distal glucose compression.

**The process by which frosting and cake combinations are switched, often resulting in psychological trauma/post-traumatic stress disorder in mentally-unstable cupcakes. This is also known as frosting reassignment surgery (FRS).

***Highly “paraphrased.”

Whole Foods Market

Cost of the box of 12 cupcakes $4.99

1) Union Square

40 E 14th Street

Fax: 212.673. 5393

2) Bowery

95 E Houston St

Fax: 212. 420. 1360

3) Chelsea

250 7th Ave212. 924 .9923

4) Columbus Circle
10 Columbus Circle
Ste. SC101
Fax: 212. 823. 9610