...and a cupcake tower celebrating Pattie and Mark's 25th anniversary. They had a theme of silver and deep purple (the shade does not show up well in this photo). They also had a candy stand that distracted me the whole time with all the yummy treats on display. OK, GUILTY. I caved and ate a few M&Ms, oops.
The cake at the top tier matched the look of their centerpieces - cream roses and purple statice. I had to figure out how to make the statice look authentic with gumpaste and I wasn't sure at first what kind of detail was involved. It turned out pretty well. If you want to try to make purple statice, roll out the gumpaste and cut it into strips about .5 inch thick or so. Then fold it into a zig zag pattern and work your magic to readjust the 'petals'. Another method is to create all the petals separately and make little buds of flowers, but the look of them bunched together with a flowy affect was nice.
The cupcake flavours were chocolate fudge, red velvet, and carrot.
PS - notice the purple glow in the room...
Paint Chip Placemats 6 - 3 colours, $60, Avirl Lorety, Etsy.com
Wedding Carnival cupcake toppers, set of 50 $125, Knock.Knocking, Etsy.com
The Original Felt Yarn Wreath-Paint Chip, $55, Knock.Knocking, Etsy.com
I was so excited to visit Vanilla Bake Shop because for one I love their branding. Their cakes are really cute, check them out here. Vanilla bake shop is in yet another beautiful neighbourhood and close to the pacific coast highway. The area has great shopping and restaurants, you could spend a whole day there.
One of those deal-of-the-day sites offered a coupon for cupcakes and it seemed everyone waited until the last possible day to use it because they were sold out of mini cupcakes. They didn't have a large selection left of the regular cupcakes either (I made the mistake of offering the lady behind me to order first and she took the last of many flavours). Plus we also showed up in the last half hour of the business day. We ended up ordering the Old Fashioned cupcake: Bourbon Dark Chocolate Cake, Whip Cream Center, Vanilla Bean Frosting, White Chocolate Sprinkles, Cherry on Top.
Makes me smile.
In all honestly I think it must have been refrigerated or maybe because I had the last batch it was kind of cool and a little dense, but the flavours were there and we probably would have had better luck if we went earlier in the day. This was the last stop of my california cupcake adventure, and I am left with the urge to get baking.
I walked into Shoppers once and on display was a set of fragrances that caught my eye. The scents were familiar, some great and some just odd. The name of the company that makes them is Demeter Fragrance Library. These scents are suppose to take you to a place, remind you of something that means something to you, or spark a memory. It was hard to narrow down to show you some examples, they have SO many. You need to see it to believe it.
As far as the smell goes, they really do smell like they are suppose to. It's freaky. From their Sweet delights library, here is vanilla cake batter, apple pie, birthday cake, and Devil's Food. They also have cinnamon bun, brownie and sugar cookie scent.
From their Hershey's collection I'd like to eat, not smell…
And now we start getting odd.
Salt Air, laundromat (which is on their best seller list), Gin & Tonic and Christmas in New York -- what the does THAT smell like?
And even more odd. We have dirt, grass, sushi and frozen pond.
Here are prices for the Vanilla batter scent:
1/2 oz Cologne Purse Spray $10.00, 1/2 oz Cologne Splash $6.00, 1 oz Cologne Spray $20.00, 4 oz Cologne Spray $39.50, 4 oz Atmosphere Spray $14.00
4-oz Calming Body Lotion $14.50, 4-oz Foaming Bath & Shower Gel $11.50
3-oz Tender Bath Oils $15.00
Crumbs is a bakeshop with multiple locations, we went to the one on Cross Creeks Road in Malibu. It is tucked away in a little relaxation and shopping area I fell in love with. The retail space features a large outdoor deck, great patio sets, and fish tanks right in the middle of all the action.
At Crumbs, we choose the cupcake of the month "Elvis" and the Boston Cream cupcake. Both moist, fresh, with a delicious topping. One was more like a buttercream with butterscotch-type chips and the other a chocolate ganache.
They also offer a gigantic cupcake called the Colossal Crumb. I wish you could tell the actual proportion of it...
My favorite drink especially in the summer is lemonade. This one was made fresh on the spot, and although cupcakes (or should I say chocolate ones) don't mix well with lemonade I enjoyed the drink very much thank you.
Our trip wasn't a "cupcake tour" but I did force (and I use the word force lightly) my husband to drive around the city for some cupcake tasting. The first place we stumbled upon was close to our hotel, called Cako. At this time we just arrived that evening from a long day of being on a plane that my camera wasn't out and ready. Here's an iphone shot:
The shop was not very big, but they had a good selection. We ate the Strawberry Cheesecake - Graham cracker crust, strawberry cake, cheesecake filling topped with our signature cream cheese frosting. The graham cracker crust seems to be making it's way into cupcakes lately and it adds a nice texture. The next day we walked to the Fisherman's Wharf, a beautiful marina area packed with yummy restaurants and souvenir shops.
And there was Kara's cupcakes. The shop was really cute, the variety was endless and it was packed with people. It is such a great location.
We tried what they said was the best selling cupcake the Chocolate Velvet - chocolate cupcake with a velvety bittersweet chocolate buttercream and also the Sweet S'mores - chocolate cupcake with a graham cracker crust and a toasted marshmallow frosting. Both cupcakes were incredibly moist and delicious. You can how fresh they were. I could have ate a dozen on the spot.
(Kara has a karavan. Not the thing you drive your kids to hockey practice in, but a mobile cupcake bakery that you can book for an event. Brilliant.)
It was our first year wedding anniversary yesterday. Remember this post on mini cake replicas for your 1st anniversary? Below is the cake that we had yesterday made by my talented friend Monica, although I overloaded the poor thing with flowers because I got too excited. She was so sweet to find the exact flowers from my bouquet for the cake, I got emotional seeing them once again. You want a sweet idea for your wife/friend on your/their anniversary? Replicate her bouquet. She'll shed a tear and you'll get many brownie points.
Ps. I also put on my wedding dress again. Felt good, and almost forgot how much I was in love, with the dress. Hah. You should try it.
I didn't break the rule.
I didn't update and I'm sorry, but I missed you and I have a lot of goodies to share this week! I'm still in vacation mode. I don't know if others feel this way, but when I go on vacation I get so inspired. It happens when I see the different cultures and lifestyles. When I see elements of history, beautiful scenery, and unique art. I keep a little section in the notes app on iphone to write notes of inspiration. I don't want to forget them and I want to try to practice some of these things soon (painting is one of them). It's always nice to keep notes because when you look back at them and realize you did what you say you would it feels damn good. And if you didn't do anything, hey you intended to so you get 1 point for that.
Here's the bridge...
The city of San Francisco viewed from Alcatraz...
And a 'California' cupcake, which you'll hear more of this week.
I love to get away, but I'm also happy to be back.