Cupcakes!! Big or small, chocolate or vanilla, savory or sweet, I don’t discriminate. I love them all! I recently attended Drink: Eat: Play’s5th Annual Cupcake Challenge at the Renaissance Hotel adjacent to the Hollywood & Highland center. The rules were simple, bring a box, show up between 4-7pm, sample cupcakes and vote for your 3 favorite bakeries. Upon registration, we were given a ballot, a pen and an identifying wristband.
My friend Terry and I went prepared, wearing small shoulder purses so we could keep our hands free for gathering the cupcakes. We brought shoeboxes for holding our sweet treats, and we were amazed at the various contraptions people brought for the occasion. The mission was to collect 36 different cupcakes from the 18 different bakers participating. Lines were long, but everyone was surprisingly polite. No pushing and shoving was witnessed at all. I personally took small bites from 14 different cupcakes and ate two entire cupcakes…which were miniature, by the way. I drank water and sipped cappuccino, took photos and jotted notes in between bites. Then I started slowing down…I couldn’t eat one more bite. Except maybe one of the savory cupcakes to take off the sugar edge. So I tried the Western Breakfast offering from
My Delight Cupcakeryin Pomona, who were the defending champions from 2011’s challenge. The crisp bacon crumbles on top of this cornbread cupcake were a welcome savory break from all the sweet.
I cast my votes for 1st, 2nd and 3rd place bakeries and was feeling a little bad for the contestants who did not put a toothpick label in their cupcake. With so many options, it was hard to remember which cupcake came from which bakery. My hands-down favorite was the Girl Scout Samoa cupcake! Amazingly it tasted just like the beloved cookie. Also getting my vote were an Orange-Chocolate flavor and a Cinnamon French Toast.
Now I’m sitting here with about 20 leftover mini-cupcakes…wondering if I should be nice and share with my neighbors. I am thrilled that I was able to attend and be a small part of this cupcake craze. I felt a bit like a guest judge on Cupcake Wars! You too can be part of the experience by viewing photos from the event.