When I saw that Flavor Cupcakery was doing their very own “Christmas in August” featuring their winter themed Cupcake Wars cupcakes, I knew this was the perfect opportunity to stop into their fairly new storefront in Cockeysville, MD. We visited their original location in Harford County last January (review here) but were only able to sample the one Cupcake Wars flavor they were offering at that time.
All last week they carried one of the four different Cupcake Wars flavors each day but announced that on Saturday they would have all four. This was my chance to finally try the other three flavors! I already had a busy day planned for Saturday (my niece’s 3rd birthday) so I called their shop in advance and requested that all four flavors be set aside for me to pick up about 5:30pm, a half hour before their closing time. I didn’t want to take any chances that the flavors would be sold out and was happy they took my name and order over the phone.
The new shop has the same feel as the original shop but is laid out a bit differently and seems a little smaller. Like the original shop, they carry cool cupcake merchandize and I spotted some new t-shirts I haven’t seen, but was able to leave with just the cupcakes I ordered. I credit this to the woman in front of me blocking all of the cupcakes and asking a thousand questions about each flavor and the attentive staff who asked if they could help me before I started grabbing any cute cupcake merchandize while I waited. Thank you inquisitive lady and friendly employee for helping me save some money.
As soon as I was handed my box filled with treats, I instantly realized that the cupcakes had been kept in the refrigerator. I understand some fillings require refrigeration but I was really hoping it hadn’t dried these tiny cakes out.
I placed these four cupcakes in an airtight container as soon as I got home, hoping to trap in whatever moisture I could so they would be as fresh as possible to enjoy with some out-of-town friends (including Guest Crusader Marina) who were visiting the next day.
Luckily everyone agreed that they would like to share when it came time to dive into the cupcakes. The “cupcake tasting panel” consisted of five woman: Kerry (my handy baking assistant), Marina (Guest Crusader and avid cupcake lover), Jenny (good friend from elementary school), Crusader Jenn, and myself. It was interesting to hear everyone’s different opinions of each of the cupcakes:
Chocolate Orange Clove Marnier
This cupcake consists of chocolate cake, a chocolate orange clove Grand Marnier filling, a spiced tea frosting, and is topped with chocolate/orange shavings. Although this cupcake was beautiful with its edible gold glitter, I think it had the most mixed reviews. Marina thought the clove flavor left a weird taste in her mouth, Jenn though it was just okay, and I really liked it. I love cloves so thought it brought a nice spiciness to the cupcake. One thing Jenn and I did agree on was the orange flavor was not present enough. In fact, I couldn’t really taste the orange at all. But if this was just a Chocolate Clove Marnier cupcake, it would have gotten an A+ from me.
Chocolate Cherry Wassail
The group seemed most excited about this cupcake, with its chocolate cake, a spiced wine cherry reduction filling, and a wine reduction frosting. In theory this cupcake sounds amazing, but unfortunately we all felt that the frosting wasn’t sweet enough to blend well with the cherry flavor. Like all the cupcakes we tried that day, the frosting was super buttery and as a red wine lover, even I thought that it could use a little more sweetness. Crusader Elisa tends to prefer a more butter frosting though, so if she had been able to join us for this tasting, I think it might have been her favorite.
Chocolate Dipped Peppermint Macaroon
Only Kerry and I were excited to try this cupcake, comprised of an almond coconut cake, a chocolate ganache filling, a peppermint buttercream, and grated coconut on top. The cake was a bit crumbly so I ended up tasting that before taking a bite of everything all together. My first reaction was that it was really dense and sticky. I wasn’t sure how I felt about it until I tried it all together and then agreed with Kerry, this was a really good cupcake. Marina didn’t seem to dig the flavor combination, but Kerry and I really enjoyed it. I don’t think the combination of chocolate, coconut and peppermint is for everyone, but I look forward to having this cupcake again in the colder months.
The one flavor we did all agree on was the Modern Fruitcake. This cupcake was just as good as I remember it being back in January, and luckily everyone else felt the same way.
I’m still curious to try some of Flavor’s other cupcakes, like their Tiramisu, Pear and Goat Cheese, Raspberry Creme Brulee, and their Zucchocolate (Zucchini cake with either cream cheese or chocolate frosting – this is their August flavor of the month, and thanks to Ms. Questions I didn’t see it in time to add to my purchase…). With all these flavors on my must try list, I’ll definitely need to visit a few more times.
– Posted by Cupcake Crusader, Stacy (Baltimore, MD)