Just Like People, Can Cupcakes Have Bad Days? Another look at Sweet Hearts Patisserie

After our recent review of Sweet Hearts Patisserie, located in Annapolis, MD, we were contacted by the bakery asking if they could get a second chance. They really believed their products could get a better review and they were eager to have us try them out again. We are always open to trying a place again, when approached with a sincere effort to make things right. It shows a great level of customer service, which Sweet Hearts Patisserie had already proven they exhibited after my dad’s pleasant experience in their shop. Even if the second tasting didn’t go well, one thing we could vouch for is that Sweet Hearts Patisserie really appreciates their customers and honest feedback. However, after trying their cupcakes again and being much more satisfied, it made me wonder, can cupcakes (like people) have bad days?

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(Beautiful decor inside Sweet Hearts Patisserie and all dressed up for Christmas.)

I was really excited to see the shop for myself. Photos online made them look like a wonderful shabby-chic getaway in the middle of a busy shopping center, and it was! Decorated for Christmas, I was stunned by the effort to make this shop stand-out.

There were six cupcakes to choose from, so I picked four (we had already tried the Red Velvet and I wasn’t as interested in the French Vanilla). I was glad to see holiday flavors, so the Eggnog and Peppermint Chocolate were a no-brainer. Then the Pistachio (one of my new favorites!) found its way into my box of goodies. Since my dad would be tasting with me, and because it looked so good, we also got the Chocolate Silk.

Chocolate Silk

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Back at my Dad’s house with our box of cupcakes, we decided we’d try the two chocolate cupcakes (he had no interest in the Eggnog or Pistachio). The chocolate cake on this cupcake was delicious! It was a heavier, moist, fudge-like cake, and yet still airy somehow. You can actually see how moist the cake was from the photo. The frosting was buttery, light, and smooth (just like our first experience), and rich in flavor. My dad said this was possibly his favorite cupcake ever!

Peppermint Chocolate

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This cupcake had the same great cake as the Chocolate Silk, and the frosting also had the same texture. Unlike most places, which overpower your taste buds with peppermint flavor, Sweet Hearts Patisserie’s was subtle but still present. Another winner! My dad was still questioning if any treat for one person was worth $3.00, but then later that night he took my step-mom back and they purchased these two chocolate cupcakes. I think he must have decided that they were worth it!

Pistachio

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As much as I wanted to try all the cupcakes in one sitting, I wasn’t able to get to the Pistachio and Eggnog until the next day. The cake was on the dry side, similar to our first tasting, however the texture of pistachio chunks redeemed the cupcake (I’m a sucker for texture in a cake!), along with the amazing frosting. Sweet Hearts Patisserie should consider selling frosting shots, because it’s so good.

Eggnog

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The cake on the Eggnog cupcake was moister than the Pistachio and had a great flavor, especially with the eggnog frosting. Any eggnog lover would appreciate this cupcake. Actually, I like eggnog cupcakes much more than actual eggnog!

French Macarons

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Since Sweet Hearts Patisserie is a French pastry shop, I was really excited to try their macarons. There were so many to choose from! They are priced at $1.75 each, which is pretty reasonable for a French macaron.

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(Macarons are packaged in neat little boxes with a  viewing window. What a great idea!)

I choose four macarons, the Chocolate Chestnut, Lavender Honey, Raspberry Rose, and Eggnog.

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They all had a perfect texture: smooth, crunchy exterior with soft moist centers. The Chocolate Chestnut had a nice nutty flavor, the Lavender Honey and Raspberry Rose both had subtle floral notes that didn’t overpower their complementing flavors, and the Eggnog tasted just like the Eggnog cupcake!

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Sweet Hearts Patisserie also specializes in petit fours. They are beautiful and I’m really curious about them, but at $2.50 each, that’s more than I want to pay for a bite size treat. I know that they are usually on the pricier side and I can only imagine the amount of work that goes into creating them, but I’ll take a cupcake instead! However, if petit fours are your thing or you are looking for a special gift for a pastry lover, you should check them out (and then let us know what you think!). They are also offering a holiday menu with seasonal flavors assembled in cupcake, macaron, and petit four packages, plus cakes, tarts, and more.

I am glad we gave Sweet Hearts Patisserie a second chance. They are only a few minutes away from my dad’s house and they have the perfect cupcake to fulfill a chocolate craving. Have you ever given a place a second chance, to find that the product redeemed itself? Let us know!

– Posted by Cupcake Crusader, Jenn (Westminster, MD)

*Products were gifted, however this didn’t affect our opinions.

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Sweet Hearts Patisserie

Our review of Sweet Hearts Patisserie is long overdue. We originally planned to try them back in June, but a big storm left Annapolis without power. I called to see if they were open with cupcakes, but was told their ovens were down. Nothing would be baked fresh that day, so the only cupcakes available would be ones that had been refrigerated from the day before. We wanted to make sure we tried them when they weren’t at a disadvantage, so instead we went to JoJo’s Cupcakes & Cream. After waiting almost all summer, we finally had the opportunity to try them when my dad brought them to our August rained out picnic gathering (Yes, it’s been since August! We’ve had so much cupcaking going on, that it’s taken us this long to get our review to you. Please forgive us!).

We were very excited to try cupcakes from Sweet Hearts Patisserie. From their website their shop looks very chic and boasts French style pastries such as petit fours, macarons, cakes, eclairs, croissants, and more. My dad said that the person helping him was very friendly. She even circled the cupcakes he selected on the menu, so that he wouldn’t forget when he brought them to us. Unfortunately we were let down by what we tasted.

Maple Bacon

This cupcake had a dense cake, and while we aren’t opposed to that, it was also dry. The bacon, which topped a buttercream frosting, wasn’t crunchy like you’d expect, but instead had a chewy texture. Crusader Elisa and I agreed that the flavor was good, but couldn’t save the cupcake from its failed textures.

Chocolate Hazelnut

The cake in the Chocolate Hazelnut cupcake was also dense, but not dry (more fudge like). I thought I picked up on coffee flavor, but Crusader Stacy said that could be because I’m so use to hazelnut coffee. The frosting was buttery and the cupcake had an overall good flavor. Despite the better cake texture, it still wasn’t our favorite.

Red Velvet

We all know Red Velvet is hit or miss (and is mostly a miss with me). Crusader Elisa, our Red Velvet connoisseur, thought the flavor was good, but not great. Again, the dry, dense cake couldn’t save it.

Lemon Berry

Among the four we tried, this was our favorite. The fresh berries on top and in the cake were the redeeming quality, adding moisture to the dense cake.

We were all really surprised by these cupcakes, but not in a good way. They are so pretty and we had high expectations, since Sweet Hearts Patisserie is a bakery that specializes in many French style confections. But maybe that’s their downfall versus other places that focus solely on cupcakes? I do think I would give them a second chance, given the opportunity, especially if it was to try some of their other pastries or macarons. The photos they post on Facebook look great and make me what to test them out again. If you’ve tried them, let us know what you think and what treats you had.

– Posted by Cupcake Crusader, Jenn (Westminster, MD)