I’m a firm believer that the cupcake trend is not a trend. Sure, bacon cupcakes may be pushing it, but the good-old chocolate on vanilla has been a bake sale staple for decades and will likely continue to be, regardless of economic boom-and-bust, even when the craze for gourmet flavors dies down.
Anyway, a nice side effect of this recent cupcake revival is that NYC has literally become a cupcake Mecca, with bakeries in every borough claiming to make the best buttercream and tenderest vanilla. Unfortunately, as an avid cupcake baker (and a little bit of a snob) myself, I’ve found these claims mostly ungrounded; all too often, innocent little treats are replaced by gargantuan blobs of sugary frosting and coarse cake (i’m talking to you, Crumbs).
To me, cupcakes should be light yet satisfying; sweet, but not overly so, with just the right ratio of frosting-to-cake.
Fortunately, Lulu’s Cake Boutique fulfilled all my criteria, and then some.
The Raspberry Rhapsody cupcake I ordered was absolutely delicious, perhaps the best cupcake I’ve had in Manhattan so far. The vanilla cake was moist and fine-textured, the raspberry buttercream smooth and light, and the lemon curd filling fresh and tangy. The frosting-filling-cake ratio was spot-on; and the cupcake itself the perfect size—a real cupcake size, like the kind you bake at home, no more, no less. At $2.75 the cupcakes may cost more than your homemade treats, but are on par with most prices in NYC, the same as a chocolate or vanilla Magnolia cupcake. But where Magnolia’s goes for that homemade feel, with the imperfections in the cake and rustic frosting adding to its appeal, these cupcakes are all class.
If you visit:
LULU CAKE BOUTIQUE • NEW YORK CITY
112 Eighth Avenue (between 15th and 16th Streets)
New York, New York 10011
P.S. : Lulu’s also makes a variety of “retro” treats, snack cakes like Ding-Dongs and Twinkies in homemade form. Can’t wait to try the Red Velvet (or curiously named Passionately Kissed) Twinkies next time!