I recently had a chance to visit one of the fancy shmancy cupcake shops that are in the process of taking over the world. Cupcake Royale has a number of locations; we visited the one in Seattle's Capitol Hill neighborhood. "We" being me, Laurie and her very sweet husband, Wayne. This would be Laurie from the Hawthorn Tea Room who is now a good friend. I guess she felt sorry for me after all my whiny blog posts about having no friends. So, see? You can make friends over the age of 40. Or I can. I don't know about you per se. You might have a gypsy curse which has forced you to become a recluse who never leaves your home to eat cupcakes. Or something.
The shop is super cute, lots of pink, brown and white with other very bright colors thrown in here and there. It's also very Seattley. Very trendy, lots of laid back cool people lounging about. And of course, there's coffee. Cupcake Royale also has some good marketing happening. Lots of cupcake related merchandise for sale and they also sell their products through Metropolitan Market, the upscale grocery store. My favorite item was the "Legalize Gay Cupcakes" shirt. It cracked me up.
We went to check out the selection and I had to spend some time wiping saliva from my chin. They don't like it when you drool on the display case. Sorry!
I've actually had their cupcakes before because, as I mentioned, they sell them at Met Market which has a location near my house. So I knew I'd be getting one with a white base. I absolutely LOVE the texture of their white cake. I'm usually a flavor person, but I'm all about the texture here. It's extremely dense and rich. It's almost like pound cake, but not that heavy. I wish I could describe it better. For me, it's the perfect cake consistency. I've tried other flavors, and they're all yummy, but the vanilla buttercake is my idea of cupcake heaven.
I chose the Lemon Drop, which has a lemon head candy on it. Even though these are super cute, this is too much frosting for me. This is how they frost all of their cakes, so I've learned to deal with it. But if they handed me the spatula for a minute, about half the frosting would come off. Not to say I didn't enjoy it, I just think the thickness of it is a little overwhelming. This plate, on the other hand, rocked my world. I adore it and am actually kind of glad they weren't selling this pattern, because I don't have any room for it in my house and I wanted to buy twelve of them.
They bake the cupcakes on site, which means they frost and decorate them here, too. They have an open area in the center of the store so you can watch. I was enamored with the sprinkle jars. Feel lucky you only have to look at two of the fifteen pictures I took of them. Not even joking.
After I ate my Lemon Drop, and Laurie and Wayne shared their vanilla and chocolate babycakes, one of the bakers came out and started frosting a tray of chocolate cakes. I freaked her out when my flash went off for this shot. Oops!
But she was so sweet and came over to the other side so I could take pictures. And she didn't call me "weirdo" or anything. In fact, you can see in the second picture she was talking with me about what she was doing and how long it took her to learn the signature swirl. This is the cream cheese frosting (which is phenomenal, by the way) and because it was a warm day it wasn't cooperating with her. But I still think they looked beautiful.
I know you may not live close to Cupcake Royale, but I'm sure there is an independently owned cupcake shop somewhere near you. Since they are taking over the world and all. So go support them and eat a few cupcakes. Unless you have that gypsy curse thing going on. In which case, never mind.