October 01, 2009

Sugar-sweet Sunshine

Sometimes you just need a sweet treat in the middle of a long week. I am (un?)fortunate enough to work on the same block as Magnolia's midtown outpost. Their Bleecker street location may be the famous one, but it's also where all the Carrie-Bradshaw-wannabes line up for their slice of the SATC experience, sending the line in a serpentine path around the corner. That spot is a tiny, cramped storefront where they file you in and out with the most interesting mix of chaos and order. The Midtown location is NOTHING like that. The workers pick out the cupcakes FOR you, instantly speeding up your transaction (and lowering the chance that someone put their subway-dirty hands on your cupcake) and hustling you through without making you FEEL like you've been hurried.

There are differing schools of thought on Magnolia--not everyone likes them. I tend to stick to the vanilla and chocolate varieties (and only recently have I liked the chocolate ones). I LOVE the particular vanilla flavor their cake has. A lot of people rave about their red velvet cupcakes, but those are my LEAST favorite--the few times I've tried them, they've been dry, crumbly, and lacking in flavor. So not worth it!

I'm also a bit of an icing fanatic--at least at Magnolia. Look at that icing-to-cake ratio in the previous picture! Gorgeous! This is too much icing for a lot of folks, and I can appreciate that, but it's just right for me! I like to tear my cupcake in half, and then plop the bottom on the top, so the icing is in the middle of the two pieces of cake. Yes, I play with my food before I eat it, sometimes. Theirs is an honest-to-goodness buttercream. I can't stand the greasy, lard-based icings that seem to be on way too many cakes these days, or the ones that taste like unsalted butter and nothing else (Cupcake Cafe, I'm lookin at you!). Granted, one is more than enough. I ate the purple one and put the pink one in the fridge for another day!

You might THINK you can put away two of these, because the first one is so delicious and yummy that more has to be better, no? NO. I did this ONCE. Never again. About halfway through the second cupcake I thought "Uh oh, this is going to end badly," but I'd already committed, and by God, I am NOT a quitter! Let's just say I learned my lesson. Okay. I didn't. A year later I tried to put away 2 again but only made it through the first one and a few bites of the second one. Then I REALLY learned my lesson! One is just enough, especially when you have an ice-cold glass of milk on the side. : ) CUPCAKES!!!!!!

Magnolia Bakery
1240 Avenue of the Americas
New York, NY 10020
(212) 767-1123


Jennifer said...

Looks delish!! Closest thing Tulsa has is Kupcakz http://www.kupcakz.com/

Looks like the perfect amount of frosting to me. And what IS with that nasty lard frosting?! BLAH!

Anonymous said...

Not sure if they're seasonal, but the pumpkin cupcakes at that Magnolia location are to die for!

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