You can do this.
Staring at myself in the mirror, I didn’t believe the words.
Perhaps if I said it aloud, “You can do this.”
Yes, I could go on this cupcake mission.
It’s crazy to think a Frosting Fanatic would need a pep talk. But I did. Somewhere between my baking resurgence and satisfaction from Trader Joe’s newest desserts, I had lost my sense of adventure and become complacent.
What could be sweeter than what I already had at home?
The pep talk reminded me I wouldn’t know unless I tried.
So after a thorough review of my reconnaissance list, I opted for The Cupcake Store in Mission Viejo, California.
The edible cake designs on their website captivated me. Looking further, their cupcakes and pastries seemed just the thing to revive my palate.
Located in a small business park, their whole cakes rotating in the display case next to the door entranced me for a few moments. Continuing towards the register, I found their everyday cupcake inventory. I chose two. The price ranged from $3.25 to $3.50 each.
A couple of hours later, I sat down with their Vanilla Bean Cupcake. It’s a vanilla bean cake topped with vanilla buttercream.
Of course The Cupcake Store had more interesting combinations. However, sometimes pure and simple are best.
And it was.
Light, moist, and infused with vanilla essence, the cake was delicious on its own. The sweet frosting almost had the consistency of whipped cream. But there was no denying its buttery richness. And the sugar crystals sprinkled atop provided a delicate, crunchy contrast.
Impressed with The Cupcake Store’s grasp of the basics, I reached for my second selection.
The Avalanche Cupcake is a chocolate cake topped with cream cheese frosting, and then drizzled with chocolate and caramel.
The devil’s food flavor was hearty compared to the light texture. Thick cream cheese frosting enhanced the cake with its caramel and chocolate ribbons.
Overall, I enjoyed the vanilla more. Still, with nothing but remnants before me, the success of this mission was obvious.
I give The Cupcake Store 4 out of 5 stars. In a market where some bakers take shortcuts and charge you for the appeal, it’s nice to find another shop that makes a good product.
Now I must confess, other desserts called to me during my visit. And since the point of this expedition was to rejuvenate my senses, I did indulge.
Wondering if these treats tasted just as good? Please join me next time to find out.