Out of Business

This morning I was on my wonderful bus ride to work (okay, it actually is the second worst bus ride ever next to my friend Kristin’s who spends 1.5 hours on public transportation one way to get to our awful workplace) and noticed that the bakery that shall not be named was up for lease.  I’ve mentioned how awful this place was before, but today is the big day that I’m actually going to name it (even though most of you already know)…Cherry Bomb Bakery, ugh!

Initially when I saw this place was going to open in Brighton Center, I was really excited, only to be completely disappointed once I actually tried it.  And you can see on Yelp that tons of people were with me on this one too.  I’m not really sure how this place got any good reviews, but I’m pretty sure it was just from the people who couldn’t get a vegan cupcake anywhere else. 

I was also disappointed to learn that before opening, the owner of Cherry Bomb was allegedly bashing other businesses in Brighton Center like Athans and CafeNation.  I say allegedly since these are internet/Facebook rumors I read but I wouldn’t be surprised considering the hipster snobbery I encountered the two times I visited there. 

Let me tell you a little about my experience at Cherry Bomb when I went over the summer with Lenny.  First off, the service here was completely lacking.  You would think in a new business you’d be super friendly and excited to see new customers in the store but this wasn’t the case.  We tried making conversation with the girl at the counter telling her we were excited to see them open but she wasn’t too responsive.  Since everyone has a bad day, we decided to try again a week or so later but found the service to be no better.  Same girl, same bad attitude.  It was 7:45 and all she could say to us was that she was closing soon…it seemed like she just wanted us to get out so she could close up shop.

There are a good amount of variety in the cupcake flavors and they have vegan cupcakes.  I tried to ask for recommendations but didn’t get far with that.  I would have recommended that they put signs in the case with the cupcakes because it’s hard to tell what they are (and we didn’t get a great response when we tried to ask).  

We ended up picking out the signature cherry bomb cupcake and an orange carmel cupcake.  Both of these cupcakes were packaged together in a paper bag so when we got them home they had fallen over and the frosting was mushed together (I have to say that Sweet definitely has a leg up on packaging the cupcakes since you can get them home in one piece).

Once we got our mushed cupcakes home we couldn’t wait to dig in.  I really thought that while the service was bad, the cupcakes would live up to the hype but was disappointed again.  The cake on the cherry bomb cupcake was pretty good but the frosting was horrible.  The frosting was so grainy and sugary with a very greasy aftertaste.  It was almost inedible Lenny and I split both cupcakes so we could try different ones but had to scrape off frosting because it was just not good.  While I did think $2.50 was a decent price for a cupcake, the cupcake just wasn’t even good enough to justify paying for it sadly.

A lot of people bought Groupons for this place (I urged my friends not to!) and apparently they couldn’t fill the orders.  I guess they weren’t prepared to keep up with the demand but if you read reviews on Yelp, some people with Groupons didn’t get the dozen cupcakes they paid for.  What a ripoff!

Needless to say, I didn’t think Cherry Bomb would last very long, and they didn’t.  So it was a big fat:

It’s too bad since they could have been a really great addition to Brighton Center businesses.  Apparently they’re closing the store front but the owner will still be doing private catering.  It’s just as well, the public masses don’t need to be subjected to those cupcakes anymore. 



The Cupcakory

What could possibly be more fun than having your own cupcake shop?  Well it’s got to be having your own cupcake truck! I mean it would be pretty cool to be an ice cream man driving that truck around (minus the Pop Goes the Weasel music playing constantly) to have people run to you for ice cream.  And, I mean cupcakes are totally waaaay better than pre-packaged ice cream treats anyway.  It would be the best of both worlds of ice cream man and baker.

I actually saw my first ever cupcake truck this afternoon at the SOWA when I was there visiting my friends who take amazing photos and have a booth called SuMa Photography.  I almost stopped dead in my tracks when I saw the Cupcakory (notice this is quite similar to my imaginary cupcake shop’s name: the Cupcakery) and just stood there and pointed at it for a few minutes.  I mean first of all, how cute is that truck?  There were other food trucks there but this one just literally takes the cake.  I loved their little window showing off their fresh made cupcakes and the planters they had hung at the ordering window were absolutely adorable.

They had several different kinds of cupcakes I could have sampled but the ones that really stuck out to me were the French eclair and the salted caramel cupcakes.  I had trouble deciding between both and believe me I wanted to try both but after having breakfast not too long before, my stomach would only let me eat one cupcake.  After much debate (and this really was a hard choice), I went for the salted caramel cupcake and paid the friendly woman at the window $2.75, which is pretty average as far as cupcakes are concerned, and went on my merry way to eating it.

So what was the verdict on the Cupcakory’s salted caramel cupcake?  Delicious!  This was honestly one of the best bakery cupcakes I’ve ever had, and if you know me, you know I’m SUPER picky about my cupcakes (I like to pretend I know a thing or two about good cupcakes).

First, the cake was perfect.  It was a light and fluffy chocolate cake and wasn’t dry at all which I’m usually pretty critical about. It reminded me of the one bowl chocolate cupcakes from Martha’s cupcake book, which come out absolutely perfect every time.  Now, on to the frosting.  This was the salted caramel part of the cupcake.  It was a caramel buttercream with a hint of salt.  The frosting was nearly perfect too.  It was a delicious smooth frosting that was perfectly sweet without having that gross grainy texture or a greasy aftertaste.  The only thing I thought was missing from the frosting was a little more of the salted taste.  It was great  frosting but for salted caramel, it could have used just a bit more.  Maybe I’d add a little sea salt garnish on the top of the cupcake…delicious!

This was clearly a great cupcake and the idea of a traveling cupcake shop is awesome!  These were definitely much better than the cupcakes from the Bakery Who Shall Not Be Named (but I’m not too nice to link to them) who have some pretty awful cupcakes.  It was a perfect fall adventure to SOWA to get such an amazing cupcake!  Everyone must look out for this truck around Boston.



Sweet and Still Here…

Am I just the worst blogger ever or what??  I know, its been almost a month since I’ve posted and nothing, nada.  And sadly I’m back and I’m not even writing about cupcakes.  Ok, well I’m not writing about my own cupcakes but this is Adventures in Cupcakes, so I’m writing about someone’s cupcakes.  I went to Sweet in Harvard Square last night and only after I had eaten my entire cupcake did I think this adventure would actually be worth blogging about.  So sadly, no picture of my cupcake since I scarfed it down but I did try to get a few pictures on my phone before I left so I could chronicle this adventure.

Sweet is really cute, its very clean and white looking, kind of modern.  Definitely a similar feel with the light colors that I’d want in a cupcake shop, but I’d personally go for a little more homey, old fashioned look.  I do love their cute little cupcake logo though that they have all around the shop and on the windows.

So I’ve had Sweet before and thought they were okay, the frosting is a bit sugary for me, but I’m a huge frosting critic and tend to be really picky about my frostings…I mean who wants a mouthful of grainy sugar and butter mixture?  Not me.  Sweet does a good job with their frosting unlike our new cupcake shop in Brighton, which will possibly be named at a later time (horrible cupcakes though).

I went to Sweet with my friend Lindy, and she got the sweet cake cupcake which was vanilla bean cake with a chocolate buttercream frosting.  For me, I got a strawberry shortcake, which had the same cupcake base as the sweet cake but is filled with strawberry preserved and topped with whipped cream frosting and a sliver of strawberry.

The verdict?  I definitely liked my Sweet cupcake this time.  Surprisingly, the best part was the frosting.  It tasted like the perfect whipped cream but was thick enough to hold up to the cupcake.  The actually cupcake part was good but a little dense but definitely moist enough.  If I was going to make a strawberry shortcake cupcake though (and I definitely will), I wouldn’t put strawberry preserves in the middle.  I missed the fresh strawberry taste in this cupcake, so I think I’d go for fresh berries here.  Lindy said she liked her cupcake but it had a bit too much chocolate frosting on it and had to take off the extra dollop from the top.

Overall, our adventure to Sweet was pretty successful…its a pretty cute place and the cupcakes were tasty.  They have a lot of interesting flavors on their menu with certain ones being featured daily while others are seasonal flavors like the strawberry shortcake or bubblegum (which I’m not sure I’d be adventurous enough to try). It was definitely worth a try, plus its research for my own cupcake empire!