In terms of cupcakes, I’ve always thought this translated to an unwritten rule where frosting is the enhancement to the good thing.
As such, most bakeries usually handle the frosting to cake ratio accordingly. Though some might be generous with their frosting, the cake will remain dominant.
Thus imagine my surprise, when I came across a bakery that challenged this standard, making the frosting and cake equal partners.
It was Sweet & Saucy Shop in Long Beach, California.
I heard of them through a friend who works nearby. Her office uses the bakery regularly and she said everyone enjoys the desserts.
In typical fashion, I assessed the shop’s website before planning a visit. Their menu and photos definitely whet my appetite.
The cupcakes looked even better person.
Inside Sweet & Saucy, it was obvious each cake was generously topped with buttercream frosting. However, with the cupcake liner, it was difficult to discern the ratio.
My first selection was their Cookie Dough Cupcake. It’s a vanilla cake with mini semi sweet chocolate chips and cookie dough frosting.
Now as much I adore it, I had yet to have a really good cookie dough cupcake this year. I was hoping to resolve that with Sweet & Saucy.
At home, with my fork and plate ready, I removed the cupcake liner. What I saw made me pause and take a second look.
Not only was the cupcake smaller than I initially thought, but more importantly, the frosting seemed to match the cake’s height.
I grabbed my ruler (yes, seriously) to measure and confirm.
I noticed the impact at first bite.
I’m not saying this was a bad thing, just a fact – the cookie dough frosting overshadowed the cake.
The frosting’s texture was lighter than I expected. I could taste the presence of brown sugar and the chocolate chips throughout were rich.
I pushed aside the frosting to appreciate the cake. It was similar to vanilla pound cake and didn’t need any frosting to complement its flavor.
Next I tried their Nutella Hazelnut Cupcake. It’s a chocolate cupcake with chocolate Nutella frosting, and candied hazelnut crunch.
This was one of the best chocolate cupcakes I’ve ever had.
The cake was moist with a deep chocolaty flavor. It was able to match the Nutella frosting, which with a 50/50 ratio, tried to compete for my attention.
Once again, the frosting’s texture was lighter than it appeared. It was sumptuous and the candied hazelnuts added another indulgent touch.
Friends, this was one of those times where I struggled with a rating, because Sweet & Saucy fell in between. I stared at my calculator for some time, as if my disgruntlement would change the result.
Nonetheless, after considerable thought, I’m going with my heart (and palate) for a rating of 4.5 out of 5 stars.
Though I’m a Frosting Fanatic, this rating does not reflect favoritism of Sweet & Saucy’s frosting to cake ratio. On the contrary, it was the quality of their cake and frosting that earned them this rating.
I’m grateful for my friend’s recommendation. Now I have another cupcake shop where I can have my frosting and cake too.