Before Marcus and I finish our collaboration on our review of The French Laundry along with an overall summary post of our time in the Bay Area and the Napa Valley, I wanted to fit in some recent foodie adventures I had in the city shortly after we returned.
I received a very kind e-mail from the marketing folks at Sprinkles Cupcakes, mentioning how much they loved my post on Sprinkles' grand opening weekend in Manhattan! It was so exciting to hear from them! They also wanted me to enjoy a dozen cupcakes on them during my next visit, so after I returned from San Francisco, I started off Memorial Day Weekend with not only four-day weekend, but also a delicious array of twelve cupcakes from Sprinkles!
I met up with Marcus and Jess on the Friday of Memorial Day Weekend. It was important that we go on a Friday because per the "flavor cards" at Sprinkles, the chai latte flavor is only offered then. Marcus had been dying to try Sprinkles' version of the chai latte cupcake, so it was the first thing we had our eyes on.
The bag filled with a dozen cupcakes, split between Jess and me (along with Marcus)! Since it was a really warm weekend, I knew it'd be difficult to bring these back home over the holiday to my family in Jersey, so I thought the best idea would be to split the dozen cupcakes with Jess, who could share them with her sister, Jill--that way, the cupcakes could be fully enjoyed without the frosting melting from the scorching heat outside.
The Sprinkles logo box seals!
This is Jess's half dozen of cupcakes--two red velvet on the left (everyone's favorite, thus far), a vanilla (top middle), a lemon coconut (top right), a dark chocolate (bottom right), and a milk chocolate (bottom middle). Jess had the milk chocolate in the bakery with us--this cupcake had Belgian dark chocolate cake with fudgy milk chocolate cream cheese frosting. She reported this was very good, just like the dark chocolate cupcake she had during our last visit, but only with milk chocolate instead of dark.
As for Marcus and me, we got two chai latte (left two), two red velvet (middle), one lemon coconut (top right), and dark chocolate (bottom right, per Jess's recommendation from our last visit). Marcus and I both wanted to try a pumpkin cupcake, but they had just run out when we had ordered. The bakery staff told us that they were putting in another batch in the back to be baked, but the batch wouldn't be ready for another 30-45 minutes, so we said we'd just come again to try those and opted for the two red velvet.
The red velvet was great as always--very moist cake with moderately sweet cream cheese frosting. The lemon coconut had a Madagascar bourbon vanilla cake with lemon coconut cream cheese frosting. Overall, had a light citrus flavor balanced with a touch of vanilla, but we didn't taste much coconut in it, other than from the shavings on top.
I saved the dark chocolate for dessert later that night, and it totally changed my life--it was the best chocolate cupcake I've ever had. The bittersweet chocolate sprinkles on top (you could also opt for one with just bittersweet chocolate frosting, but I highly recommend sprinkles) added this extra layer of chocolatey goodness. These sprinkles weren't your typical brown colored sprinkles--they were teeny-tiny squares of bittersweet chocolate sprinkled on top of this cupcake. They melted and collapsed right onto the frosting, resulting in a smoothly rich and bittersweet chocolate combination that wasn't an overwhelmingly sweet or chocolatey by any means. It is an unforgettable sensation that is quite difficult for me to convey into words, so I suggest you make a trip to Sprinkles to see for yourself!
Marcus and I both had a chai latte cupcake each--a cupcake made from spiced chai tea cake with chai-vanilla frosting. It was absolutely wonderful--it was like the bakery somehow transformed our favorite café beverage into cupcake form, without losing its integral flavors or spices. The spiced chai tea cake was perfectly moist, like all other Sprinkles cupcake cakes we've had, and the frosting was the essence of a chai latte--softly spiced creaminess! Autumn in a cupcake, no doubt!
Findings: We had a great time returning back to Sprinkles to try new cupcake flavors and enjoy old favorites. After trying the chai latte and the dark chocolate cupcakes for the first time, they are now added to my roster of favorites! And as always, what I lov when e about Sprinkles is that its cupcakes are always moist and with the perfect amount of sweetness (i.e., a nice tinge or two). Additionally, you know its cupcakes are always freshly baked because the staff is constantly replacing cupcake trays in its display from the empty, sold trays to freshly baked cupcakes when appropriate. As such, you know the cupcakes that are "sitting out" are really fresh, pretty much out of the oven and timely frosted and are not meant to "last" for the rest of the day's sales. Lastly, the service at Sprinkles is exceptional--each staff member I saw and spoke to was super friendly, helpful, and enthusiastic about being there. For these reasons, I believe Sprinkles has taken over as my favorite cupcakery in the city.
Thanks again to Sprinkles for the cupcakes! They were amazing as always!
Price point: a dozen cupcakes c/o Sprinkles!
--May 27, 2011
Sprinkles Cupcakes (Upper East Side)
780 Lexington Avenue
New York, NY 10065