Why do so many adults gibber on excitedly about cake
as if it were an illicit drug? It isn’t. It won’t get you high, result in amazing sex or change the way
you see the world. More importantly it shouldn't leave you bankrupt or get you arrested, unless you steal one. So please stop. It's a cake. Just
eat it and say “Mmm nice cake” or something... and give me a bit.
‘I’ll wait here’, I said to my scout as she bravely pushed forth. I hovered outside, awkwardly; pretending to be fascinated by status updates on my phone, for longer than anyone witnessing would have been comfortable watching. What held me back was pink. Pink signage, windows framed by pink tissue lights, pink menus and when the sun hit the glitter atop of the cupcakes inside I was almost blinded in a bobby dazzling blaze of the colour. Pink is nature's warning sign to men and anyway, it doesn’t suit my skin colour. What my trusty scout brought out though very much suited me. A Chocolate Peanut Butter Stack made with a dexterously light touch and packed full of sweet peanut creamy goodness. So a few weeks later, with my intended sandwich emporium full, I manned-up, bravely braved my pinkophobia and timidly strolled in.
Steve, who runs the place, isn’t exactly the sort of chap you’d expect to be a purveyor of all things pink. He told me he’d grown up in South Africa, maybe pink was illegal there and this was some sort of Veldt nurtured dream?
The goats cheese, beetroot & honey panini I'd ordered was apparently a recipe from an Indonesian acquaintance of Steve. Although lacking any descernable Indonesian ingredients it was superb. Lightly toasted gently yielding bread, giving way to a lovely creamy goats cheese then a bite from the beetroot all followed by an enveloping wrap of honey and a few tasty seeds for texture. This really worked and came with a decent bit of properly dressed salad and the right amount of crisp interest. There's nothing worse than too few crisps with a sandwich, pure torment.
There are three sweet menus in here. Cake hugging heaven. Everything on the patisserie menu is £2.75 and if my earlier stack sets the general standard, that's a bargain. The Salted Caramel Vanilla Crunch was looking particularly tasty on this visit as were the Ferrero Rocher and Red Velvet Cakes, everything on the cake menu's a mere £2.50 a slice. My very good and refreshingly limey Key Lime Pie came with squirty cream. Squirty cream is hilarious, I didn’t even know they still made this stuff, it's the orginal Ferran/Heston ‘foam’. This one thankfully wasn’t pink and tasted entirely of cinnamon dust. Oh the coffee's good too.
I don't really get cupcakes. Tarted-up pieces of sponge laced with icing and glitter, visually promising so much more than they ever deliver. Lots of people do get cupcakes though and for them this Cupcakery is a place to come. They've got them made from Irn Bru, Cookie Monster, Jaffa Cake, Millionaires Shortbread, Caramac and many, many more. All excellent looking examples of the Cupcaker's art and only £1.85 a pop. There's even a cupcake to drink.
So please go, but for goodness sake don't pretend you're doing something naughty. Thanks to the Industrial Revolution, crop rotation and a global economy the developed world can now have it's cake and eat it and it's really not that big a deal.