Friday, September 26, 2008

A good cupcake is hard to find...

When I learned that a Sprinkles cupcake bakery had opened in Palo Alto, I was suddenly in need of a sugar fix.

Me and a lot of other people.

My sweet tooth was sated, but I'm still in search of the ideal cupcake.

I tried two flavors, red velvet and mocha. The red velvet had lovely brownish red cake, not food-coloring red. But can a cupcake be too moist? When I peeled off the paper liner, the cake nearly collapsed under the weight of the frosting.

The cream-cheese frosting was achingly sweet. A flat candy decoration on top -- the trademark "modern dot," color-coded for each cupcake flavor -- was stylish, but so hard that I wondered belatedly if it wasn't meant to be eaten.

The mocha cupcake was more satisfying, with delicious frosting. There's no substitute for real butter in cake frosting, and this one had it in spades, with just the right amount of coffee flavor to match the deep chocolate cake.

(Sorry I don't have pictures of the cupcakes. I love my iPhone, but it takes inexplicably bad pictures. No one else I know has this problem.)

Next time I'd try the black and white cupcake, or chai latte (which apparently only makes an appearance on Fridays), or maybe ginger lemon.

I've gone by the store twice, and each time there were lines out the door, perhaps 30 people long. I'm going to have to study that flavor schedule to plan my next visit.