Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Get My Buzz On

On round two of my “DC Cupcake Tour – Virginia style”, I visited Buzz Bakery in Arlington, VA.

I always have high hopes and a little bit of anxiety as I taste new cupcakes. I get a thrill of the unknown! Sometimes, I’m blown away by what I taste… and in the case of Buzz Bakery—I was thrown out of the water!

Vanilla Vanilla


Taste
Cake
Moist, crumbly, mouthwatering, lip-smacking, succulent… just plain tasty. I wish I had better words to describe what a real made-from-scratch cake tastes like, but I don’t. However, if you try this cupcake, you will know exactly what I mean!

Frosting
Just the way I like it… creamy, right amount of vanilla and butter. A very luscious frosting!

Presentation

The cupcake was topped with blue and gold sugar sprinkles. Although, sugar sprinkles aren’t usually my thing, I did find the color combination to be very pleasing to the eye!

Sweet Endings
Head to toe, this bakery was a well-designed branded product. Everything from the art décor to the coffee cups, they implemented their brand seamlessly.

The have a sliding price scale for all of their treats. The more complex the flavors get, the higher the price. Nothing too outrageous… I believe the highest priced item was $4.00. But, you could get a simple vanilla-vanilla (my fav!) or chocolate for $2.75. And all of their cupcakes are very generously sized!

In addition to the yummy cupcakes, the coffee was delicious. I was a little nervous to get their house blend (since I prefer mine nice and dark), but it was great flavor and wasn’t weak on the taste at all. If you wanted a different type of buzz, you could order one of their many alcoholic drinks. Low on cash? Come in for their happy hour at night!

All in all, I believe I found my second favorite cupcake in the country! It was so delightful, that I had to go back again before I left. You bet I will return once I’m back in the nation’s capitol!

Round 2!

Buzz Bakery – Ballston
818 N. Quincy Street
Arlington, VA 22217
Ph: 703-650-9676
http://www.buzzbakery.com

Bakeshop – Rock Shop

Oh, it feels so good to be back on the cupcake trail again! Yes, I have been enjoying the tasty morsels, but I haven’t really been keeping tabs. I couldn’t tell you how many cupcakes I have in the queue. For some of them, I think I just need to go again!

Last week I made my annual/bi-annual trip to the Nation’s Capitol. Not only is it one of my favorite places in the country, it’s top-notch for cupcake places! This time I kept my cupcake adventures in Virginia.

For my first day back, I headed over to Bakeshop in the Clarendon area of Arlington, VA. Being a rainy day and my first time there, I had some trouble finding the place. It wasn’t located too far off of the main streets, but it could easily be missed.

Immediately upon walking in, I was overwhelmed with a great scent of baking! You can’t fake that smell… if you are a bakery and you don’t smell like one, you are probably doing something wrong. After I asked about all the flavors for kicks, I ordered my traditional vanilla-vanilla. Also known to them as “Perfect White Cupcake”.

Here’s his description: “Light, fluffy and white as snow. This was the first cake I ever baked, and will always be a favorite.

Taste
Cake
Wonderfully baked! The top has crisp, sweet edges (reminded me of bundt cakes, where you sprinkle sugar over the sides of the pan). Inside was delicious moist and fluffy.

Frosting
Sooooo creamy! Mmm, mmm, mmmm! It was similar to ice cream-smooth. Once it rolled over the tongue, it sorta melted in your mouth. And then, it popped with a burst of vanilla flavor. I was calling it the vanilla bomb!

Presentation
Simple and sweet.

Sweet Endings
I really enjoyed my visit. First of all, the people were awesome! While I was there, they were jamming to some tunes and just hanging out. The chill atmosphere definitely stems down from the owner, the sugar master himself. Actually, anyone who calls themselves Sugar Master… Mr. Cupcake… and Confectionary Artist ranks high on my list! Second of all, he offered me free coffee to warm up. Such a small gesture, but it didn’t go unnoticed!

I was also pleased with the pricing of their cupcakes. The size was regular and they only charged $2.50. I’ve seen that size being charged $3-3.50… Outrageous, right?! Good job guys for keeping it real.

I would definitely go back to Bakeshop. The cupcake, the atmosphere, and the selection (vegan-friendly options too) makes it on my list of top places in DC!

Bakeshop
1025 N. Fillmore Street, Suite G
Arlington, VA 22201
571.970.6460
http://www.bakeshopva.com

Cupcakery – Déjà Vu

The best moments in my life are when I stumble across a cupcake shop, without even trying! On a pit stop in Ft. Worth on my way back to Houston over break, I found the Cupcakery. The name sounded really familiar to me. Well, let’s be honest – most cupcake names are similar, and I have been to a lot. But, after walking in and taking a closer look at their box, it said “The Best Cupcakes in Vegas Texas” Ah, yes! I’ve been to the one in Vegas!

The store was located in downtown Ft. Worth. Interesting enough, downtown Ft. Worth has alot going on! Lots of shops, restaurants, hotels, etc. I was very impressed by my stay there.

I was really torn to get the traditional vanilla or try something new. These were the ones I really wanted to try!

Tickle me Pink

Kir Royale is my favorite cocktail. Wasn’t sure if I would like the raspberry cake, but that champagne buttercream – DELISH!! However, I decided to stick to my true colors and I got the vanilla-vanilla (aka – Tinkle me Pink

Kir Royale - so thirsty!


Taste
Cake
I can’t quite put my fingers on the flavor of the cake. It had a hint of lemon, almond… almost like a sugar cookie dough taste. Whatever it was, I liked it.

Frosting
Simple vanilla frosting that was creamy and screamed “butter”. It paired extremely well with the cake, for an amazing combination.

Presentation
For an added zing, they made the frosting pink. I do believe it has to do something with their signature colors. Nonetheless, it was cute. Nothing real special though.

Sweet Endings
I liked this place much better than I had remembered. The problem with multiple locations is that you can’t guarantee consistency. But, this time around I was very impressed. I did notice that they have a location up in the Woodlands. If I happened to be up in the area, I would stop by.

The Cupcakery
http://www.thecupcakery.com

My 2011 In Review!!

The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2011 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

A San Francisco cable car holds 60 people. This blog was viewed about 2,500 times in 2011. If it were a cable car, it would take about 42 trips to carry that many people.

Click here to see the complete report.

Merry Christmas

Merry Christmas!

I just wanted to take a moment to wish all of my fellow sweet friends a very merry Christmas!

I stole this from my former teacher, but I feel that it says all my hopes and wishes…

“For the holidays, I wish us all the ability to be kind and to accept kindness, the strength to stay hopeful in all that we do, the deep love of life that forces us to laugh and love and celebrate, and the chance to take a deep breath when we need to, without apology or guilt. Joyous Holidays!”

I look forward to sharing another wonderful year, filled with love, smiles, and (of course) cupcakes!

Cheers to sweetness!

Hunting for new cupcake places is always an adventure. I quickly discovered that Houston had cupcake trucks… my favorite kind of cupcake shop! However, trying to track down a truck in a new city (especially when my Garmin is my only lifeline) was a quite the challenge! But, I don’t let much get in my way of a cupcake!

One afternoon, I made my journey to find Cupcake Coach, the first mobile gourmet cupcake vendor. Weaving through crowds of people out on their lunch break, I finally see this…

Giddily, I walk up to the window and order their vanilla cupcake.

Taste
Cake
Baked to the right consistency, this cake was perfectly crumbly and moist. Also, I tasted a strong vanilla flavor.

Frosting
This frosting was definitely a buttery vanilla. However, I really had to search for the vanilla flavor. It was much thicker than I care for… it needed some time to reach room temperature before it felt smoother and the flavors really popped.

Presentation
It had a simple look, pink colored with a few rainbow sprinkles. I was happy to see that it had the right ratio of frosting to cake. Always important!

Sweet Endings
They carried only a select few flavors of cupcakes, and the flavors didn’t wow me. It was a limited menu with simple, popular flavors. I do believe that cupcake was too small for the price. However, they did package it in a nice container that kept it safer while transporting.

It was a very clever of them to have a refrigerator on the truck. There is no way the little cakes could survive Houston heat!

There just wasn’t anything special about the vanilla cake that would cause me to make a special trip to go back. But, if I did come across them, I would be interested in trying some of their other cupcakes.

Cupcake Coach
713.409.1055
cupcakecoach@aol.com
http://www.cupcakecoach.com/

Satisfying a Craving

It didn’t take long for my sweet tooth to try its first Houston treat! I was pleasantly surprised by a set of Crave Cupcakes brought to me at dinner from my new friend Joe. I did my research before coming and I knew how reputable Crave Cupcakes are in Houston. Needless to say, I jumped with joy! (at least I jumped off the couch and couldn’t wait until AFTER dinner to try)

Doesn't these look beautiful!

The cupcake up to the test was the Italian Cream – a Vanilla butter cake with toasted coconut and walnuts, topped with a sweet mascarpone cream cheese frosting.

Taste
Cake
Cakes with mixins are always a bit tricky to get right. A baker must be careful to cook the cake without letting the filled pieces dry out the cake, make it too moist, or sink to the bottom. The vanilla butter cake had a richer flavor than typical vanilla cake. I didn’t care for the toasted coconut, however, the walnuts were a nice crunch. But, the cake immediately surrounding the walnut pieces (especially the bigger pieces), was a bit doughy. However, the rest of the cake cooked well.

Frosting
Wow, what a delicious twist to the cream cheese frosting! The addition of the mascarpone cheese made the frosting creamier than your typical cream cheese. I loved it! I couldn’t have enough of the frosting!

Presentation
Very simple, modern decorations. Each cupcake had a button with the imprint of a stand-up mixer. Underneath was an accent color button. I enjoyed that the frosting was spread edge-to-edge. It’s very important for every bit of cake to have frosting.

I didn’t like the top-to-bottom cake ratio. The top over-extended from the base of the cake which gave the perception of a bigger cupcake. Also, that shape makes it difficult to grab the cake out of the box.

Sweet Endings
Yum, yum, yum! This was a very tasty cake! I also tried their red velvet and dark chocolate. Both delicious!

I can’t wait to visit a Crave Cupcakes shop. First of all, you can see all the action of the baking and decorating of the cupcakes! Also, they offer “breakfast” cupcakes and their own special blend of coffee. Their menu changes daily, so there’s something new to try each day!

Crave Cupcakes
1151-06 Uptown Park Blvd.
Houston, TX 77056
or
5600 Kirby Drive
Houston, TX 77005

Ph: 713-62-CRAVE (27283)
http://www.cravecupcakes.com