Monday, November 24, 2008

New Hello Cupcake Flavors

I was in Dupont on Friday afternoon, and of course I can’t make a trip there without dropping into Hello Cupcake! I picked up three new flavors I’ve yet to try: Pumpkin (not the Gluten Free I’ve raved about before, the regular one), Tiramisu, and Chocolate Chai.

I first dug into the Pumpkin. The cream cheese frosting was perfectly creamy and sweet, as always. While the top of the cupcake was a little hard, the center was moist and rich in spicy pumpkin flavor, specked with little pieces of nuts…walnuts maybe? I think the flavor is great, but honestly I prefer Hello’s gluten-free version over this one! It taste’s just as great, if not better, and has those coffee-cake like crumbles (minus the coffee flavor) on top. Delicious!

You don’t hear me say this very often about a Hello Cupcake cupcake, but I wasn’t crazy about the Tiramisu cupcake. The presentation was cute…dusted with cocoa and topped with a chocolate covered espresso bean. The frosting was a delicious mascarpone frosting which I enjoyed every bite of, but I think the espresso flavored cake was what was bothering me. It was a little on the dry side, and the espresso flavor just seemed a little dull. If you’re a fan of all things coffee-flavor, you may still like this, but it just didn’t do it for me.

Onto the last of the group – the Chocolate Chai Cupcake. Now I’m not a tea drinker so I don’t have too much experience with Chai, but I do know the drink is generally composed of various spices like cardamom, cinnamon, ginger, cloves, and pepper…so I was interested to see what the spicy chai buttercream would taste like. It had a little spicy kick to it, not overpowering by any means, but I just wasn’t impressed. Maybe I’m just not a fan of the chai flavor – so I’d like to hear from someone who drinks chai and see what they think of this cupcake. Aside from the buttercream, the cake was Hello’s standard chocolate cake, which never disappoints.

Have you tried the Tiramisu and Chai? Let us know what you think!

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Couture Cupcakes Ultimate Cupcake Contest

Couture Cupcakes and the Children's Inn at the National Institute of Health recently teamed up to create the Ultimate Cupcake Contest - Couture Cupcake's new flavor contest. Submission forms were created and distributed to the children staying at the Children's Inn throughout a two week period, and three submissions were selected as the winners. Couture Cupcakes then took the three winning creations and made cupcakes that best represent the ideas of the winners. In the end, it was Bret Young - a fifteen year old boy who is fighting a rare genetic immune disorder - and his chocolate peanut butter cupcake that were chosen as the ultimate winner of the contest.
Via the Washington Post, Bret's creation, along with those of the two runners-up, are on sale through Jan. 30 on Couture Cupcake's website for $3.50/each. A portion of the proceeds will go to the Children's Inn at NIH. Here's a description of the winning flavors:
The Bret Cupcake - Chocolate cake with peanut butter filling topped with a vanilla buttercream, peanut butter swirl and chocolate drizzle.
The Casey Cupcake - Vanilla cake with pieces of Rice Krispie Squares filled with marsmallow and topped with a vanilla buttercream and bits of Rice Krispie Squares
The Aaron Cupcake - Chocolate cake with chocolate fudge topped with a dark chocolate buttercream and chocolate sprinkles.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Not so Fancy "Cakes" by Leslie.

Fancy Cakes by Leslie over on Bethesda Row recently opened up, so around noon I bundled up in my down coat and braced the cold winter wind as I made my way over to the shop. I chose from a wide variety of cupcakes, and ended up picking out four flavors: Carrot Cake, Pumpkin, Red Velvet, and Brownie.

The first thing I noticed when I bit into the Carrot Cake was that the Cream Cheese frosting had a gooey/stringy consistency...what in the world? And not only was the texture weird, the taste was off too. Cream cheese frosting is very easy to do, so I'm not sure how they got this wrong. The cake didn’t even taste like carrot cake, it had this weird blandness to it that I can’t even pinpoint. The lady at the counter suggested this one to me when I had her pick out her favorite, and she was raving how it was all full of great spices like nutmeg. I don’t even taste any spices. This is probably one of the worst carrot cakes I’ve had.

The Pumpkin was better than the carrot cake, but that’s not saying much. The only thing that made it better was that you could actually taste a flavor to it – the pumpkin. Georgetown Cupcake’s and Hello Cupcake’s Pumpkin are both worlds better than this. Really it tasted like something I’d expect from an amateur baker, and seeing as to how Leslie is a very seasoned baker, there’s no excuse.

A slight improvement, the Red Velvet cupcake was decent. The cake was incredibly sweet though, sweeter than any Red Velvet I’ve had before. Like the Red Velvet cupcake I had from Starbucks last week, I can compare this to a sugar cookie. However if I had a choice between Starbucks Red Velvet and Leslie’s Red Velvet, I would 100% of the time go for Starbucks. This just came up short, not to mention it unfortunately used the same weird cream cheese frosting as the pumpkin and carrot cake.

Lastly, the Brownie Cupcake. What a disappointment. I’ve had better brownies out of a box from the grocery store. The kind of rich, gooey chocolateness you expect from a brownie was completely lacking, and it even bordered on dry. The chocolate frosting was very cocoa-ish and thick, and I think it could have used a little more sweetness to balance out the heavy cocoa flavor.

In summary: Leslie is an amazing decorater, one of the most talented I’ve seen. But where were those skills in decorating these cupcakes?? Not only were they not pretty, but they were sloppily made as they clearly baked out over the edge of the liner, which in turn made the edges hard. And while we’re talking about actual baking, I'd like to go out on a limb here and say that she has a lot to learn. The cakes are all lacking in flavor and creativity. Considering the gourmet price ($3.25/cupcake, the brownie one is $4), there is nothing gourmet about them. When I first bought the cupcakes and saw the minimal dollop of frosting, I was a little dismayed, but considering the taste of the cream cheese frosting, that was probably best. I can't help but wonder, is this what her expensive designer wedding cakes taste like??? I sure hope not, because you'd have to pay me to serve this at an event. I won’t be wasting a dime on any cupcakes from Fancy Cakes by Leslie ever again.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Free Godiva Truffles

Not that this has anything to do with cupcakes, but since a lot of cupcake lovers are chocolate lovers as well, I thought you'd like to know that if you stop into your local Godiva from 1-3pm today, you'll receive a free truffle!

Kendall's Cakes

I recently came across a Falls Church, Virginia based bakery, Kendall’s Cakes, that I thought everyone should know about! Kendall has worked closely with the pastry chef at the Ritz Carlton, and has designed and created extraordinary cakes and pastries for such luminaries as Tony Bennett, author Annie Lamott and the Bush Family. Kendall's Cakes has also been featured in The Washington Post, Modern Bride Washington, and Northern Virginia Magazine.

I shot Kendall an email and asked her to tell us a little about her cupcakes. Kendall says "my cupcakes are different from most of the others. I think that the fillings, mousses, punches and curds that I use in my wedding cakes are one of the things that make my cakes so popular. So when I make my cupcakes, I cut off the tops, scoop out the centers, punch and fill them with the appropriate filling, place the top back on and then decorate them. That means that a lemon cupcake is lemon cake, lemon punch (the sweet lemony syrup that I make) lemon curd and then lemon buttercream. Oh, so delicious."
A little more pricey than your average cupcake, Kendall's cupcakes cost $6.50 each and there is a one dozen minimum. I've got to say that based on her gallery, they are beautifully decorated. Of course if you want sugar flowers or any time consuming decorations, the cupcakes can cost a bit more. Kendall says the cupcakes "are very popular for weddings where people are expecting to pay a premium. And also at bridal and baby showers."

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Georgetown Cupcakes at Fashion Forward Fashion Show in DC

This Friday, DC's Shadow Room will be hosting the Fashion Forward Fashion Show, where professional football players, Redskins cheerleaders, Washington Wizards Girls and other local celebrities will be hitting the catwalk to raise money for Hoop Dreams scholarships. Hoop Dreams, which was also a documentary movie, is a D.C. scholarship program which has paired thousands of public school students with mentors and internships, helped them study for the SATs, and awarded more than 1,600 college scholarships.

"(If you've ever wanted to see Terrell Suggs model, here's your chance.) Tickets are $50 in advance ($60 at the door) and include two hours of open bar and passed hors d'oeuvres -- including cupcakes from Georgetown Cupcakes! -- as well as the chance to have your picture taken with Tyra Banks on the red carpet. Okay, it's courtesy of Madam Tussaud's, but your friends don't have to know that." In addition, guests will receive a complimentary gift bag from (first come first serve).

Event Information courtesy of the Washington Post

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Starbucks Red Velvet Cupcakes

Finally! After 7 months of hunting, I found a Starbucks Cupcake! Well technically my friend Lauren found it, but either way, I got it! And I was pleasantly surprised.

This was the only cupcake they had that wasn't a Cheesecake Factory Cupcake: a Red Velvet Cupcake with Chocolate Truffle Filling, and it was great! One thing though, I thought the cake itself tasted fantastic without the filling. I don't think the filling hurt the flavor, but I could have done without it.

The frosting did the job - not too sweet, but not something you want to eat by the spoonful either. The whole package was very fresh and moist, and after finishing the last bite, I realized I thought it tasted more like a really good sugar cookie than your average Red Velvet cupcake! Would I eat this cupcake again? Most definitely!

Friday, November 14, 2008

Bubble Bath Cupcakes

This holiday season, everyone is cashing in on cupcakes! My friend Eve sent me the link to these "Bubble Cupcakes" from Bath & Body Works. They even come in standard and mini size! Take a look:

The product description reads: "For a sweet treat, indulge in a fat-free, no-calorie Delish Bubble Bath Cupcake. Each cupcake is handcrafted in the USA, using the highest quality ingredients to ensure a tranquil, blissful experience. Once you begin filling your tub, simply place the bubble bath cupcake under the running water. Let the sweet aroma melt all your cares away as the long-lasting bubbles hydrate your skin."

The single cupcake with pink frosting (seen above) apparently smells like buttery vanilla, and the single cupcake with white frosting smells like yellow cake. Mmmm! And check out these little mini's below:

The mini flavors are Cotton Candy, Lemon Fluff, Creamy Vanilla, Oh Honey, Fruit Sorbet and Birthday Cake. They'd make great stocking stuffers!

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Bethesda Magazine Taste Test's Cupcakes

Keeping up with Washington Post's Cupcake Wars, Bethesda Magazine took it upon themselves to find the Bethesda area's best cupcakes in their most recent issue. "Mark Ramsdell, head instructor of the pastry arts program at L'Academie de Cuisine in Gaithersburg, was the expert judge for the blind taste test while members of the Bethesda Magazine staff were also judges."
The team purchased yellow cupcakes with chocolate icing at five local cupcake shops. You won't see Fancy Cakes by Leslie in the competition though, as they weren't set to open until after the Magazine's deadline.
The big winner of the contest? Just Cakes! And guess who came in dead last? You guessed it, Cakelove. Here's a list of the competitors, listed in order of how they finished in the contest:
4849 Rugby Avenue
5269 River Road
6914 Arlington Road
4961 Elm Street
935 Ellsworth Drive

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

MallowDrama Cupcakes Come to Reston

Starting Saturday, November 15, 2008, MallowDrama cupcakes will be for sale at Dinner Zen, Reston, Virginia’s first meal assembly store! A celebration will be held at Dinner Zen on November 15th from 1-5 PM, where door prizes will be up for grabs as well as free mini cupcake samples from MallowDrama. Also, for ever cupcake purchased MallowDrama will be donating 50 cents to one of four local theater groups, as designated by the customer.

The line of cupcakes at Dinner Zen, known as MallowDrama’s Cupcake Theater, will feature at least six selections daily. Four standard flavors (see below) will be offered on an ongoing basis, with seasonal specialties and other flavors rotating onto the menu; cupcakes are priced at $3 each. Vegan cupcakes will be available daily, and special orders can be placed for mini cupcakes, large quantities, special decorations, and gluten-free selections.


One and Only Vanilla – vanilla w/ vanilla buttercream
The Chocolate Factory – chocolate w/ chocolate fudge frosting
Starlight Orange Zest – yellow cake w/ white chocolate orange ganache
Coffee Break – chocolate w/ espresso ganache

MallowDrama’s cupcakes are baked fresh locally by Mary and David Supley Foxworth, MallowDrama Chefs and Co-owners. The pair uses premium natural ingredients – no artificial preservatives – and uses local and organic ingredients whenever possible; all dairy (milk, cream, butter, and eggs) and sugar in MallowDrama’s products are organic.

Customers can place orders now (minimum 1 dozen cupcakes) for guaranteed availability for opening day; contact Dinner Zen at 703-391-9361. Dinner Zen is located at 11160 South Lakes Drive in Reston, Virginia.

Georgetown Cupcake's Chocolate Ganache Cupcake Recipe

After winning The Washington Post's Cupcake Wars contest, Georgetown Cupcake provided the paper with a recipe for their Chocolate Ganache Cupcakes! I've reposted it here for you baking pleasure, but you can also check it out on the Washington Post's website by clicking here.
You can find Valrhona Cocoa Powder and Callebaut chocolate, which are used in the recipe, at local Sur La Table stores. Of course you can use other forms of cocoa powder and chocolate, but keep in mind this will certainly alter the taste. Each cupcake has 196 Calories and 9g of Fat.
The Georgetown Cupcake ladies remind us that "the cupcakes are best when served on the same day they are made. If the cupcakes are dipped once, you'll have about 1/2 cup of ganache left over."

Photo by James M. Thresher for The Washington Post
Makes 18 cupcakes
For the cupcakes
1 1/4 cups flour, sifted
1/2 teaspoon baking soda, sifted
1/4 teaspoon salt
8 tablespoons (4 ounces) European-style unsalted butter, such as Plugra brand, at room temperature
1 1/4 cups sugar
2 large eggs, at room temperature
1 1/4 teaspoons vanilla extract, preferably Madagascar bourbon
1 cup whole milk, at room temperature
1/2 cup Valrhona cocoa powder, sifted (see headnote; may substitute another good-quality cocoa powder)
For the ganache frosting
1/2 cup heavy cream
1 cup Callebaut semisweet chocolate chips (6.4 ounces; see headnote; may substitute other good-quality semisweet chocolate chips)
For the cupcakes:
-Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
-Line a standard cupcake pan with 12 baking cups, and a second pan with 6 baking cups.
-Sift together the flour, baking soda and salt on a sheet of wax paper or parchment paper.
-Place the butter in the bowl of a stand mixer or hand-held electric mixer. Beat on medium speed until fluffy. Stop to add the sugar; beat on medium speed until well incorporated.
Add the eggs one at a time, mixing slowly after each addition.
-Combine the vanilla extract and milk in a large liquid measuring cup.
-Reduce the speed to low. Add one-third of the flour mixture to the butter mixture, then gradually add one-third of the milk mixture, beating until well incorporated. Add another one-third of the flour mixture, followed by one-third of the milk mixture. Stop to scrape down the bowl as needed. Add the remaining flour mixture, followed by the remaining milk mixture, and beat just until combined.
-Add the cocoa powder, beating (on low speed) just until incorporated.
-Use a standard-size ice cream scoop to fill each cupcake paper with batter, so that the wells are two-thirds full.
-Bake for 18 to 20 minutes (start checking at 15 minutes) or until a toothpick inserted into the center of a cupcake comes out clean. Transfer the pan to a wire rack to cool completely.
For the ganache frosting:
-Lay a large piece of wax paper on the work surface.
-Combine the heavy cream and chocolate in a medium heatproof bowl.
-Fill a medium saucepan with an inch or two of water and place over medium-low heat. Place the bowl over the saucepan and let the mixture melt, stirring until it is shiny and smooth.
-Remove the bowl of chocolate ganache from the saucepan; let it cool slightly, for 2 to 3 minutes. -Working with 1 cupcake at a time, carefully dip each cupcake top in the warm ganache, twisting your wrist as needed to make sure the cupcake top gets completely coated. To prevent drips, quickly turn the cupcake right side up and place on the wax paper. Allow the ganache to set for 5 minutes before serving.
UPDATE: I was in Tysons Galleria this afternoon doing a little shopping and stopped into Sur La Table - they're all out of Valrhona Cocoa Powder and Callebaut chocolate (because of the Washington Post naming them as a source for it for this recipe, so they say!) and won't be getting any in for a couple weeks. So you'll want to call ahead before making a trip!

Friday, November 7, 2008

Williams Sonoma Holiday Cupcakes

Did anyone see that Williams Sonoma is now selling cupcakes? Yup - a set of 9 made fresh to be delivered to your door...for $59.95. After an additional $28 for overnight shipping, that's a little over $9.75 per cupcake!!! Talk about expensive!

The Perfect Endings Holiday Cupcakes are a set of three different flavors - rich chocolate, frosted with classic chocolate icing and scattered with dark chocolate sprinkles; red velvet, generously swirled with old-fashioned white icing and sprinkled with red velvet cake crumbs; and vanilla, slathered with vanilla icing and topped with shredded coconut. There are 3 of each per order.
Perfect Endings, a Napa Valley bakery, makes these cupcakes for William Sonoma from scratch. From reading the product reviews, they're really good. Oprah listed them as one of her "favorite things" for those of your familiar with "Oprah's Favorite Things!"
Click here to check em out!

The Ten Commandments of Cupcakes

In their final run of the Cupcake Wars, the Washington Post Food Editor Joe Yonan listed out what he deems to be the Ten Commandments of Cupcakes. I've reposted them here as I thought it might help some of you who like to experiment at home!

1. Learn to walk before you run. Perfect the classic vanilla and chocolate cakes with complementary frostings before you step up to other simple combinations, and long before you try something like Summer Peach Meringue Pie Cupcake. Actually, never try Summer Peach Meringue Pie Cupcake, which leads us to . . . .

2. Keep it simple. Cupcakes are eaten out of hand in five or six bites, so don't pack in too many components, or nothing will shine. Two components (cake plus frosting) are classic, but three (cake plus filling plus frosting or cake plus frosting plus topping) can work if each piece makes sense. More than that and you're tempting sensory overload.

3. Don't overbake. You need the right recipe and equipment, of course, but the most common baking mistake might be inaccurate timing. If you have cupcakes in the oven right now, go check them, because they're probably done -- or overdone. And nothing can fix that, not even a filling or a ton of frosting, which leads us to . . . .
4. Get the ratio right. If the cake is moist and tender and the frosting is not too sweet, the best proportion seems to be about two-thirds cake to one-third frosting. That gives you a generous dollop of frosting with each bite of cake, not the other way around.

5. Use good ingredients. The best thing about cupcakes is that they are homey. Artificial flavors are not homey, which leads us to . . . .

6. Respect your vanilla extract, and respect your chocolate. Vanilla is a flavor, not a synonym for "white." On the other side of the spectrum, people are very serious about chocolate, so if you promise it, you'd better deliver it, in a big way. A chocolate cupcake that doesn't taste deep, dark and rich is a bitter disappointment.
7. Beware the refrigerator. Of course it's easier to make a giant batch of cupcakes, frost them and put them in cold storage until serving. If there's butter or cream cheese in that frosting, it's dangerous to hold it at room temperature for more than a few hours. But cupcakes can dry out if left in the refrigerator too long, and they also can pick up flavors from other foods in there. Better to store unfrosted cupcakes at room temperature and then frost what you need as you go.

8. Use butter or cream cheese rather than vegetable shortening in the frosting. Shortening leaves a slick, flavorless mouth feel that seems to last forever -- definitely longer than it takes to eat the cupcake.

9. Watch the sweetness, especially in the frosting. You need sugar, and lots of it, for a classic cake frosting, but you also need balance, or the chocolate, vanilla, fruit or other flavor will just get lost.

10. Looks are important, of course, but don't go for overkill. Use sprinkles, sparkling sugar and other decorations carefully and in good taste. Remember to create something that showcases the flavors in an appealing (and, dare we suggest, obvious) way. And be careful about colors: Even if it's delicious, a spice cupcake with lime-green frosting is just wrong, very wrong.

Monday is National Vanilla Cupcake Day!

Attention Cupcake Lovers! Monday, November 10th is National Vanilla Cupcake Day (yes, there is such a thing) so do something to celebrate! Like bake some with your friends, or bake some cupcakes this weekend and bring them into work to share!
You can use the Vanilla Cupcake recipe in the posting below from Best Buns Bakery, or you can use this Magnolia Bakery recipe I've reposted from the Food Network website:
Makes about 2 dozen cupcakes (depending on the size of your cupcake papers and muffin tins)
1 1/2 cups self-rising flour
1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
2 cups sugar
4 large eggs, at room temperature
1 cup milk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Vanilla Buttercream (recipe follows) or Chocolate Buttercream
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
2. Line two 12-cup muffin tins with cupcake papers.
3. In a small bowl, combine the flours. Set aside.
4. In a large bowl, on the medium speed of an electric mixer, cream the butter until smooth. Add the sugar gradually and beat until fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Add the dry ingredients in three parts, alternating with the milk and vanilla. With each addition, beat until the ingredients are incorporated but do not overbeat. Using a rubber spatula, scrape down the batter in the bowl to make sure the ingredients are well blended. Carefully spoon the batter into the cupcake liners, filling them about three-quarters full. Bake for 20–25 minutes, or until a cake tester inserted in the center of the cupcake comes out clean.
5. Cool the cupcakes in the tins for 15 minutes. Remove from the tins and cool completely on a wire rack before icing. At the bakery we ice the cupcakes with either Vanilla Buttercream or Chocolate Buttercream.
Note: If you would like to make a layer cake instead of cupcakes, divide the batter between two 9-inch round cake pans and bake the layers for 30-40 minutes.
Vanilla Buttercream:
The vanilla buttercream we use at the bakery is technically not a buttercream but actually an old-fashioned confectioners' sugar and butter frosting. Be sure to beat the icing for the amount of time called for in the recipe to achieve the desired creamy texture.
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
6 to 8 cups confectioners' sugar
1/2 cup milk
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
Place the butter in a large mixing bowl. Add 4 cups of the sugar and then the milk and vanilla. On the medium speed of an electric mixer, beat until smooth and creamy, about 3 to 5 minutes. Gradually add the remaining sugar, 1 cup at a time, beating well after each addition (about 2 minutes), until the icing is thick enough to be of good spreading consistency. You may not need to add all of the sugar. If desired, add a few drops of food coloring and mix thoroughly. (Use and store the icing at room temperature because icing will set if chilled.)
Icing can be stored in an airtight container for up to 3 days.
Yield: enough for 2 dozen cupcakes or 1 (9-inch) layer cake

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Best Buns Vanilla Cupcake Recipe

Chef Carlos Fernandez from Best Buns Bread Co. offered up a Vanilla Cupcake recipe to the Washington Post, who in turn posted it on their website for all to try!

The description of the cupcakes says "these vanilla cupcakes have a tender crumb, and follow the same basic recipe used for the vanilla cupcakes at Best Buns Bread Co. in Arlington. Canola oil is used in the cake batter instead of butter. If you have a scale, weigh the cupcake flours and sugar for best results."
If you have a scale, then you're either really into baking or at some point or another were really into dieting, in which case you'd probably like to know that the cupcakes have 300 calories and 14 grams of fat each.
Click here to see the recipe!

Live Chat with the Ladies of Georgetown Cupcake

If you could ask Georgetown Cupcake co-owners and sisters Katherine Kallinis and Sophie LaMontagne anything about their cupcake business, what would it be? Maybe you'd ask how they have the energy to bake for 14 hours a day? Did they actually get the meet Russell Crowe when he lined up for their cupcakes???? How do they make that icing look so darn cute?

Photograph from

Well this afternoon from 1:00-2:00pm, Sophie and Katherine will be joining the Washington Post Food Section staff for an online chat, and you'll be able to submit questions for the girls to answer!

Click here for the link. You can submit questions both in advance and during the discussion! (After the chat, you can check out the comments to this post for some excerpts)

And The Winner of the Cupcake Wars is...

Obama may be taking up the Front Page of all the papers, but Cupcakes took over the front page of the Washington Post's Food Section as they declared a winner for the Cupcake Wars! 8 weeks and 141 cupcakes later, Georgetown Cupcake has been declared the winner.

Georgetown Cupcake's Winning Chocolate Ganache Cupcake
Photo Credit: By James M. Thresher For The Washington Post Photo

In order to determine an ultimate cupcake champion, the Post's team of tasters narrowed it down to 6 bakery finalists and their winning flavors. They were:

1. Georgetown Cupcake: Chocolate Squared, Lava Fudge, Chocolate Ganache, Red Velvet, Chocolate Vanilla, Caramel Apple, Chocolate Cubed, and Lemon Blossom.

2. Baked & Wired: Chocolate Peanut Butter, Chocolate Vanilla (Karen's Birthday Cake) and Texas Sheet Cake.

3. Best Buns Bread Co.: Chocolate Cream Cheese and Chocolate Cream Cheese with Coconut

4. Hello Cupcake: Lemon (You Tart!) and Banana with Vanilla Cream Cheese (Vanilla Gorilla)

5. Chatman's D'Vine Bakery & Cafe: Red Velvet.

6. Couture Cupcake: Savannah (Red Velvet).

Cupcakes from Georgetown Cupcake
Photo Credit: By James M. Thresher For The Washington Post Photo

According to Joe Yonan, the Washington Post Food Editor who has been heading the Cupcake Wars these last eight weeks, there was no contest that Georgetown Cupcake was the clear winner. After a final round of tasting, "Georgetown, was the only one in the finals whose average score was higher than in the early rounds. Hello's and Best Buns' scoring was virtually stable, while Baked and Wired, Couture and Chatman's saw their scores drop." "Perhaps not surprisingly, Georgetown, which had the most cupcakes (and the highest scorers) going in, also dominated this last round of scoring. And when the judges compared notes after filling out their evaluation sheets, the question was not whether a Georgetown cupcake would take top honors but which one it would be."

So congratulations to Georgetown Cupcake and their winning flavors! Washington Post Staff Writer Jane Black gave us some details on what the ladies of Georgetown Cupcake go through to keep up with the demand for their treats:

"Co-owners and sisters Sohpie LaMontagne and Katherine Kallinis, winners of our Cupcake Wars, bake from 5:30 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. most days. And though they allow employees to scoop batter into tins and check the ovens, they pipe the frosting on every single cupcake themselves. On average, the store sells between 2,000 and 3,000 cupcakes Tuesdays through Fridays (up from 800 when it opened in February), 4,000 on Saturdays and 2,000 on Sundays." Just think, at that rate they're selling over 835,000 cupcakes a year!

Here's a look at some of the statistics from the contest, via the Washington Post:

(In Order from Highest to Lowest)

Georgetown Cupcake 7.33
Best Buns Bread Co. 6.70
Baked & Wired 6.44
Hello Cupcake 5.02
Couture Cupcakes 4.94
Buzz 3.36
Just Cakes 2.89
Cakelove 2.83
Chatman’s D’Vine Bakery & CafĂ© 2.41
Lavender Moon Cupcakery 2.32
Sticky Fingers 2.12
Pastries by Randolph 2.11
BakeshopDC 1.96
Furin’s of Georgetown 1.73
Baltimore Cupcake Co. 1.04
Heidelberg Pastry Shoppe 0.52

(In Order from Highest to Lowest)

Georgetown Cupcake – Chocolate Ganache – 9.58
Georgetown Cupcake – Chocolate Vanilla – 9.55
Georgetown Cupcake – Chocolate Squared 9.17
Georgetown Cupcake – Lemon Blossom – 8.58
Georgetown Cupcake – Red Velvet – 8.50
Georgetown Cupcake – Lava Fudge – 8.30
Georgetown Cupcake – Chocolate Cubed – 8.17
Hello Cupcake – Vanilla Gorilla – 7.92
Hello Cupcake – You Tart! – 7.83
Best Buns – Chocolate/Cream Cheese – 7.75
Best Buns – Chocolate/Cream/Coconut – 7.73
Baked & Wired – Chocolate/Peanut Butter – 7.42
Baked & Wired – Texas Sheet Cake – 6.67
Baked & Wired – Chocolate/Vanilla – 6.67
Georgetown Cupcake – Caramel Apple – 6.50
Chatman’s – Red Velvet – 6.33
Couture Cupcake – Savannah – 6.25

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Cakelove Election Day Discount

Not that I like to promote anything having to do with Cakelove since I think their cupcakes are awful, but for those of you who disagree, walk yourself on over to their 15th & U Street location and flash your "I Voted" sticker to get $1 off your cupcakes.
(And just an FYI - Here's a couple other Election Day Food Freebies: Show your sticker at Krispy Kreme and get a free donut, show it at Starbucks and get a free tall coffee, show it at California Tortilla for a free Taco, show it at Ben & Jerry's from 5-8pm for a free scoop of ice-cream, and last but not least, some Chick-fil-a's are giving away a free original sandwich to voters, but only if you turn in your sticker!)
Unrelated to the election, they're also running a promotion to Celebrate their 6th Birthday where you can buy 5 cupcakes and get the 6th one free. One catch though - you can only get this special on the 6th of each month.

Georgetown Cupcake on Martha Stewart Show

Did you have a chance to catch the Martha Stewart Show yesterday? Georgetown Cupcake owners Katherine Kallinis and Sophie LaMontagne were there helping Martha make election themed cupcakes!

The ladies shared a recipe for one of their more high profile client's favorite flavors - Chocolate Cupcakes with Vanilla Frosting, which you can take a look at by clicking here. And that high profile client? That'd be Senator John Kerry. I wonder who he thinks has the best cupcakes in town!

Today at Georgetown Cupcake you can find their Republican and Democrat Cupcakes (the Red is Red Velvet and the Blue is a twist on the Chocolate Squared flavor) for $2.75 each.

Cafe Trope's Banana Cupcake

I had heard that Dupont's Cafe Trope has a Banana Cupcake with Coconut Cream Cheese Frosting on the menu (for a hefty $8!), and while doing a little digging to see what people think of it, I came across the Election Day Party they're having tonight.

There's no cover charge, and they'll be showing election coverage on the big screen while serving food and drink specials all night long. While the cupcake isn't one of the food specials, be sure to try it if you go! From what I've read, it's received pretty good reviews. And of course if you do try it, come back and let us know if it's worth the price tag :)