If the past couple months have been my time off from cupcakes, flour hit the fan today for sure. The day began with a blitz cleaning, a banana and a prayer that I wouldn’t OD on sugar by the end of the day. The agenda had been set, my friend Elizabeth and I were off on an adventure, but not just any adventure, an adventure in pursuit of CUPCAKES of course!
You might marvel at the idea that there are indeed others out there as crazy about cupcakes as I am, but yes indeed Elizabeth was up for the challenge, er cupcakes with me 🙂 We started off the morning bright and early, with a stop at Sarah’s Cake Shop and Catering in the Wilson/Clarkson shopping center. I’m sure they all thought we were a bit crazy coming in at 9:30 bright eyed and ready for sugar but there we were, ready to pick out our favorites.
Clockwise from top left: Tiramisu, Chocolate Chocolate, Vanilla Vanilla, and Chocolate Caramel Pretzel
We tried 4 flavors: Tiramisu, Vanilla Vanilla (With 4th of July decor), Chocolate Caramel Pretzel, and Chocolate Chocolate. The Tiramisu was by far our favorite with a delicious caramel frosting that was different than the others which were more oily than we preferred. I was excited about the Chocolate Caramel but unfortunately the caramel pastry filling inside was lacking much caramel goodness at all…But the idea is brilliant!
Create Your Own Cupcake
Next we headed out to Wildwood to hit up a local hot spot Elizabeth heard some buzz about called Celebrating Life Cake Boutique. Little did we know that we were headed into the cupcake bar where you get to build your own cupcakes! This was a great unique idea, especially for kids because you got to pick the cake, the filling (if you wanted), frosting and then a topping to pull it all together.
Clockwise from top left; Yellow cake with mocha frosting, chocolate cake with vanilla frosting, vanilla cake with fudge frosting and red velvet.
We chose a classic red velvet, a yellow cake with Mocha frosting and chocolate crumbles on top, a vanilla cake with fudge frosting and mini marshmallows, and a chocolate cake with vanilla frosting and oreo crumbles on top. What fun! The yellow cake was by far the best, with a great texture and taste that made it such a birthday classic. While the other cupcakes were good, the small bites we took to sample each one was enough, and I wasn’t tempted to finish any of them.
The adventure continued to Whipt Cream, a shop in The Valley we’ve wanted to try for awhile but haven’t been able to hit the day and time right before today. While the location of the bakery isn’t exactly on the main drag, we managed to find it and wander in. The actual set up of the shop is neat as it is entirely open to the back making it so that you can see cakes and cupcakes being decorated as you make your selection. We chose four cupcakes again, Turtle, Peanut Butter, Chocolate Chocolate and Lemon Coconut.
Cupcakes Sunny side up with a side of sunscreen!
I liked the way that Whipt Cream put their name on the small fondant circle on top of the chocolate chocolate cupcake, it was a great simple way to brand the cupcake so that no matter if it was in the box or not, the person eating it would know exactly where it came from. I really enjoyed the milk chocolate cake that was the base of the Turtle cupcake as it had the satisfying sweet chocolate taste that reminds me of a homemade cake my dad used to make. While I am usually a big big fan of coconut, I wasn’t thrilled with the lemon coconut combination, I blame the makers of sun screen.
Next we traveled much farther east to a shop that has quite the reputation around town, Jilly’s Cupcake Bar. Lucky for us, Jilly’s Cupcake Bar was the winner on Cupcake Wars, a tv show on the Food Network. The atmosphere made it clear that things were a bit hectic with lots of people wanting a chance to try the cupcakes they saw on TV. The shop had been remodeled since I was there just a month or so ago so I can guess what their winnings went towards!
Of course we went for the winning cupcakes named, Meringue-a-tang, Space Monkey and Raspberry Fizzon. Unfortunately they tray of “Island in the Sun” cupcakes weren’t out at the time we ordered so we didn’t get the last one, but wow, the three we ordered were certainly plenty. Jilly’s big thing is over the top cupcakes and these cupcakes followed suit. The Space Monkey cupcake cake base was Banana-Toffee, a combination that really tasted like spice cake but it was oh so good! I liked the dolce-de-leche filling inside but after eating just the few bites we took it was overwhelming. While I’m not a big fruit and chocolate fan (I love them both, just not put together…) Elizabeth really liked the Rasberry Fizzon cupcake which was chocolate raspberry cake with raspberry filling and chocolate ganache with more raspberry buttercream on top of that. I don’t think they could have possibly stuffed anything more into that cupcake! While each element was tasty in itself, put together I felt overwhelmed and consequently underwhelmed by how I felt after wards.
Now at this point you’re probably thinking we really are insane going to this many cupcake shops in a day, but if you can believe it, we went to a FIFTH shop to end our adventures. After all the sugar from the morning we needed some real food, and luckily our last stop offered it! We headed to Sweet Art Bakeshop and Art studio, known for their vegan and vegetarian options as well as their CUPCAKES of all things. Yep, they know what’s good.
Atmosphere Inside Sweet Art
After finding ourselves some wholesome nutrition we took the plunge once again, into this time, some darn good cupcakes. We picked only two this time, a Boston Cream Pie and Red Velvet, knowing our heads and stomachs would thank us later. Despite having tried at least 16 different cupcakes at this point, we (embarrassingly so) started eating and didn’t stop eating either cupcake in time to realize we had forgotten to take a picture! Oops. #ConfessionsofaCupcakeaholic The Boston Cream Pie had a delicious filling and just enough richness to really make the Boston Cream Pie experience, but without an overwhelming sweetness that made you want to set down your fork between bites. The Red Velvet was a big hit with Elizabeth who appreciates cream cheese frosting much more than this girl here.
A slice (or crumb...) of Boston Cream Pie
Wow, at this point I have written a short novel, but that’s what you get for going on such extravagant adventures! By the end of the day we could not possibly look another cupcake in the eye (or place another sugar filled fork in our mouths) but it was well worth it to check out what St. Louis has to offer! At the end of the day, it is clear that there are many types of cupcakes in the world which is a great thing because if there is one thing I’ve learned in my 21 years of life, it’s that there are a lot of different people in the world. My critique overall is the use of Italian Meringue Buttercream frosting that was used on nearly all of the cupcakes we tried (except for those from Sweet Art). While I know its a personal preference, I am much more inclined to eat a cupcake with a traditional buttercream frosting. In the end, a natural and wholesome cupcake (yes, such a thing exists) will always win my heart.
This ridiculously long post should make up for my lack of posting anything in the past 2 months sorry!! If anyone knows of any other cupcake shops worthy of our critique I would LOVE to hear it, just let me know! I’m always up for trying someplace new 🙂
As always, 3 cheers for cupcakes! (And hoping I can sleep tonight!)
– The Crazy Cupcake Girl and her Accomplice