Before I went on maternity leave with Connor, there was a store that served cake located between my office and the National Geographic building. I used to make a habit of heading over to Nat Geo to check out the latest exhibit, and then stop on my way back to the office for an incredibly large, delicious slice of cake. The slice was large enough that it would typically last a few days. That's what I call an investment.
Before I started my love affair with the cake place, I used to go to the art exhibits without stopping on my way back, and then I heard a story on NPR and the storyteller used to cheer himself up by thinking "may I feel like I feel when I'm about to eat cake" and I stopped and thought about it, and that's exactly the feeling I want to walk around with.
I went on maternity leave, and the store closed. Apparently I was the only person who thought this business venture was a great idea.
I've long been a fan of Cakelove. After all, I used to frequent them on my way to the pottery studio on Thursday afternoon. Sense a theme here? In the past couple of years, the number of stores selling cupcakes in the DC area has exploded. And that is, of course, good and bad. Good, because I love cake. Bad, because I'm very good at recalling that NPR story and convincing myself to stop in and get myself a treat.
And I'm indoctrinating my kids into the cake loving club. We went to Cakelove on our first family date night. And then on our third family date night, we went to Bakeshop. While we were at Zoofari, I attempted to score a couple of cupcakes from Georgetown Cupcake, but by the time we waddled over to the dessert area, the cupcakes were long gone. This was no surprise as we'd seen lots of people walking around with several.
A few months ago, my friend turned 40, and the treat at her party were cupcakes from Georgetown Cupcake (I took two home for Helen and Connor), I've been there with friends after Mom's Night Out, and a coworker sent me home with a couple of these delicacies a few weeks ago when my boss quit her job. So let's just say, I have a bit of experience with these doodads. The number of times I've been disappointed? Zero.
But last Sunday, after we returned from camping, I went to an event for DCMetroMoms contributors and guess who was there? The founders and owners of Georgetown Cupcake and their mom. How cool is that? They have a TV show on TLC which starts in a few weeks, and I'm hoping very badly that it actually gives tips on how to make these goodies, rather than just showing funny times in the shop. These women are so nice, they sent me home with FOUR cupcakes. One, I ate on the car ride home. One, I split with Ed, but two were decorated exclusively for Connor and Helen and do you know how I know Helen is related to me? She looked at her cupcake and gasped "Oh my gosh! It is beautiful!"
Though I can't claim they're the pickiest of connoisseurs, I can report that they hope I score some more of these delicious nuggets in the future!
And so I bring you...Cupcake Wars 2010. The kids and I will be rating cupcake places all summer long. I'm going to use a 5 star system, and I'm giving our first unknowing entrant 4.5 stars. Why? Mostly, because the cupcakes are delicious (and as you can see, I've tried MANY of them), but also because they donated to the zoo (yay!), they're funny in person, and they're super nice. I can't give them 5 stars because then there would be no room if I find something better. I particularly loved the hint of cream cheese in their buttercream icing.
I think we'll visit a different cupcake store every other Friday, although we might need to go every Friday because there are that many stores in the area. At the end of the summer, Connor, Helen, and I will rank the shops.
Full Disclosure: As noted in the post, Georgetown Cupcake gave me not one, not two, not three, but FOUR of their cupcakes. And, they offered to give me a lot more but I am a newbie on the DCMM blog and I had met only 1 person before the event. I didn't take Georgetown Cupcake up on their offer because I didn't want to become known as the woman who took home a dozen cupcakes. Although I sort of regret that choice now, because those cupcakes were good.