And the winner is…
I’m not going to tell you that quickly! One thing is for sure: I love cupcakes, and having Hello Cupcake within walking distance to work and Georgetown Cupcake within (a long) walking distance to my apartment isn’t good for my svelte figure!
I had read all about Hello Cupcake on my favorite food blog, Apples and Bananas, when Bananas did an interview with Ms. Hello Cupcake before they opened. The place is decorated by her architect husband with an eye towards eco-chic. I’m not so much a fan of the faux-grain wood motif, and the frosting wave patterned cupcake counter was lost on me. But I do love the “Murano” glass chandeliers and being able to sit and eat my sugary treat.
Georgetown cupcake is much smaller and doesn’t lend itself to hanging out. The line is often out the door and down the street, but when you get inside it looks exactly like you want a cupcake shop to look: white and pink with a dainty dollhouse table and gorgeous flower arrangements. The cupcakes are stacked so beautifully on cake platters, and it made me want to sample more because they all looked that much more pleasing. And the smell…pure frosting and butter!
Hello Cupcake: 0
Georgetown Cupcake: 1
I’ve seen Ms. Hello Cupcake front and center every time I’ve been in or walked by – it’s clear she’s running the place. Her employees aren’t quite as sugary sweet and enthusiastic, but what do you expect when the boss keeps telling you to not put the cupcakes in a box automatically, and the customer gets irritated. I have to admit I didn’t notice last time I was there if they were still trying to get away with putting the cupcakes in a paper bag. They did try to sell me a $3 “cupcake holder.” Thanks, but no thanks…
Georgetown Cupcake is a high school drama kid’s dream job. Sweet, eager, and totally silly in a way that makes me SO glad I am no longer that sweet, eager, and totally silly drama kid I was. When I asked which cupcake they recommended, they gushed, “OMGTHEY’REALLSOGOODICOULDN’TPICKJUSTONE!!!” And then when I ordered, “OMGTHATISTOTALYLMYFAVORITEIFREAKIN’LOVEIT!”
But they were sweet. And eager. And for that, I award points, bringing us to:
Hello Cupcake: 0
Georgetown Cupcake: 2
The Food, AKA: Cupcakes:
I’ve had more from Hello Cupcake than Georgetown Cupcake just because of it’s proximity to work and the Friday doldrums. I’ve sampled the Prima Donna, You Tart!, Peanut Butter Blossom, Heart of Darkness, and Triple Coconut. By and large, the cake ain’t great. It’s a little dry and flavorless – how is it that Betty Crocker cake mix is so much better than a $3 cupcake? I’ll take BC Devil’s Food Cake any day over a Heart of Darkness. What’s great about Hello Cupcake’s creations, though, are the frostings. The strawberry cream cheese frosting on the Prima Donna was just meh, and I thought the Peanut Butter frosting was a little too good-for-you peanutty. But the lemon goodness that tops You Tart!? And the fantastic doesn’t-taste-like-a-Mounds Triple Coconut with the toasted coconut bits? YUM! And my co-worker literally licked her fingers clean of the chocolate ganache frosting on the Heart of Darkness.
My favorites, in order: Triple Coconut, You Tart!, Heart of Darkness, Prima Donna, and then the Peanut Butter Blossom.
Georgetown Cupcake is a hair cheaper than Hello Cupcake – $2.75 at Georgetown Cupcake. The strawberry banana cupcake I had was basically like eating a slice of banana bread with Philadelphia Strawberry Cream Cheese on top. The cake was a little dry, and the frosting heavier than Hello Cupcake. But there are more traditional flavors at Georgetown Cupcake, so the purist in you will be happy. (Hello Cupcake, by the way, has a Maya Favorite cupcake - chili-infused and topped with red pepper flakes. My friend Megan said you could feel the heat in your throat – not your mouth). Georgetown Cupcakes also sport girlier toppings – they’re just screaming to be served at a bridal or baby shower.
This past week I ordered another half dozen cupcakes from Georgetown Cupcake, making it a tie with Hello Cupcake. Georgetown Cupcake’s cake is moist – maybe too moist - and the frosting is still too cream-cheesy and heavy. Brian, however, likes them better.
I think if Hello Cupcake and Georgetown Cupcake had a little cupcake baby, it would be nearly perfect!
This tie in the last category brings the total to:
Hello Cupcake: 1
Georgetown Cupcake: 3
The bottom line is that cupcakes make people happy. You should eat them, whether they come from a Betty Crocker box at $6/dozen, or a little cupcake shop for the same price as a full meal. Enjoy, and don’t tell your dentist.