Thursday, January 14, 2010

Cupcakes in Vegas!

We're Back!!

In case you haven't heard, my husband and I spent our one-year anniversary in  
and, since we don't really gamble or drink, we actually did a bunch of really, really cool stuff:

We saw the Blue Man Group...


...Jersey Boys...


...and Le Rêve.

This last show took place at the Wynn which, in case you've never been to Vegas, is only the classiest, most chic hotel (and casino) I've even been in.  They had a Ferrari dealership IN THE HOTEL and I swear the toilet paper had real gold flakes embedded in it.  

Naturally, the hubbs bought me one for our anniversary.


I also ran into my childhood sweetheart

and then again later:


But just about the **coolest** thing we did was this:


After reading through the Cakewalks on CakeSpy, I thought it'd be fun to try out a bunch of new cupcake places.

Then, Amber (who suggested Vegas to us in the first place) found some cupcake places in Vegas, and so the hubbs and I went and searched for some more to try out and review while we were there.

Without futher ado, here is our

First stop:
Sugar's Bakery

It took us a bit to find this place -- it's not on the strip and so we had to drive about 10-15 minutes to get there.  Initially, we were kinda bummed about the distance but we soon found out that there are (at least) two other cupcake places in the immediate vicinity (reviewed below!) so it was OK.

Our first impression came from their sign.
How cute is this?

Inside, it gets even cuter! (Can you believe it?)  It has great display cases for their cupcakes and other baked goodies (like cookies and brownies!) plus fun seating and reading for kids and adults alike to enjoy while munching on their baked treasures ♥

[Look at the cute hubbs enjoying the little kiddie chair on the far right]

[Hubby enjoying a cupcake classic]

For flavors, we finally settled on these three:

(clockwise from left: Lemon Cream, Red Velvet, and German Chocolate)

 The good:  They had a nice variety of flavors to choose from, the decorations were thoughtful and creative, and we liked that they sold other baked goods though they advertised themselves as a cupcake shop.  We loved their interior decorations, too.  Everything was fun, whimsical, and made us want to stay forever.

The not-so-good:  Their cupcakes were refrigerated --boo!-- which tends to make the cake dry out.  Sure enough, after tasting the Red Velvet, we thought both the cake and frosting were dry and unappealing.

Bottom Line: Of the 4 cupcake places we visited, we ranked this one #2.  Definitely worth the drive!


Second Stop:
Mad Hatter Cupcakes

This is the second cupcake place that we visited in the area that we came to term "Cupcake Alley" because of the (awesome) predominance of cupcake shops.

Seriously, there were three all within a 2-mile radius.


Here's the front of the cupcake shop.  Seems pretty cool, right?  Oh wait, it gets better.


Did I READ that correctly!?


OMC I'm sold.

They let you choose your cake flavor, filling flavor, frosting flavor, and then your own candy to put on top.  They even offer suggestions if you can't decide on your own!  
This place is like Coldstone for cupcakes.


Yummy cupcake supplies :D

Taking in the glory of Mad Hatter Cupcakes.

After much thought, we finally chose to make two cupcakes: 
HIS: Peanut butter cake with chocolate ganache filling and white chocolate frosting 
HERS: Chocolate cake with chocolate ganache filling and chocolate frosting with m&ms on top

 The good:  OMC can you say "MOIST"??  The cake was so, so nice and moist.  MmmMmmMmmmmmmMmm.  The chocolate was so good and rich.  In the words of my husband,  
"That's a d*mn good chocolate cake."

The peanut butter cake was perfect, too.  I feel like it can be difficult to capture a good peanut butter taste without creating an overwhelming flavor but Mad Hatter achieved it!

Other things we liked:
They sell shaved ice, too (neato!), they have a great seating area for enjoying your goodies, they provide mini cupcakes as samples (that day they had peanut butter cupcakes with white chocolate frosting), they have single cupcake holders in case you just want to take one for the road, AND they have a punch card for frequent visitors.   

The not-so-good:  Um...

Bottom Line: Of the 4 cupcake places we visited, we ranked this one #1. Are you booking your trip to Vegas yet?


Third Stop:
Cupcake Lane 

First off, fantastic sign!  No doubt about it -- this is a cupcake shop!

The inside was cute and quaint with curtained windows into the back bakery area.

This cupcake shop also had a great selection of cupcakes to choose from.  With flavors that had names like Savannah Street (their version of red velvet) or Michigan Avenue (lemon cupcake with lemon frosting), they definitely won the award for more creative names.  

We chose three cupcakes here, too:

(clockwise from left: Lombard Street (their "Hostess Cupcake"), Lake Tahoe Boulevard (their s'more cupcake), and Southfork Ranch (a German chocolate cupcake))

 The good:  Fun flavor names, creative decorations, and cute to-go boxes for single cupcakes (they used Chinese take-out containers).  We also liked that they offered some sugar free cupcakes as well as cupcakes for canine companions. 

The not-so-good:  Their cupcakes were refrigerated.  No no no no no!  Pooey.  Also, I really (really) hate to say this, but we were totally underwhelmed. We expected a lot given the nifty names and decorations but the cupcakes themselves were totally lacking.  Lombard Street tasted like, well, a Hostess cupcake which isn't necessarily bad within itself but if I'm paying $3+ for a cupcake, it better taste amazing, not like something that usually comes wrapped in plastic in a pack of two.  Lake Tahoe Boulevard also failed to deliver the nostalgic s'more flavor that I was hoping for.

Bottom Line: Of the 4 cupcake places we visited, we ranked this one #3.  I'd be willing to go back and taste others (they do say that Savannah Street is their best-seller and we didn't taste that one) but I'm not holding my breath for our next visit.  If you check out either of the first two you'll already be in the area to visit this one in which case, go ahead.  I wouldn't block out time in my day specifically to make the trek, though :-/


Fourth (and final) stop: 
The Cupcakery

This cupcake shop has three Vegas locations: 
Two off the strip (which are listed on their site) and one ON THE STRIP in the Monte Carlo.

We chose to visit the latter.

This cupcake shop has a great staff who seems to love cupcakes as much as we do (which is a lot!)

We were informed that the above case houses two different kind of cupcakes:

ON THE LEFT: cupcakes whose flavors come from the frosting
ON THE RIGHT: cupcakes whose flavors come from the cake (they had cream cheese frosting)

I'm not going to lie, we were excited about these.  Not only were they all pretty and sparkly but they had lots of fun colors and flavors and, well, since it was our last cupcake shop, we decided to go out with a bang.

We got six.

just for us two :)

(From left to right, back to front:  Southern Belle (Red Velvet), Gingerbread, Peanut Butter Chocolate, Boston Creme, Tickle-me-Pink (their signature flavor), and Strawberry Shortcake)

 The good: Great staff, fun decorations for cupcakes AND interior (did you see that giant cupcake??), and come on, they're located ON the strip!  Can't get much closer than that!

We really enjoyed the Gingerbread Cupcake; not only was the cake good but the little decoration on top is really a gingerbread man and boy, is he tasty!

Our favorite cupcake, though, was the Peanut Butter Chocolate one.  Fantastic peanut butter flavor!  Man, two great peanut butter cupcakes in one weekend.  I'm in love!

 The not-so-good:  OK, I really hate to do this, but we were pretty disappointed by the other four.  The Tickle-me-Pink (I'm almost positive this is what they called this flavor), their signature flavor, is just vanilla cupcake with vanilla frosting.  You can also get it as a chocolate cupcake with vanilla frosting.
Here's my thinking:
If you're going to do such a simplistic flavor combination as your signature cupcake, MAKE IT AMAZING!  I want it to be the best vanilla (or chocolate) I've ever tasted!  After tasting it, I want to feel like all the other vanilla (or chocolate!) cupcakes I've had before were made of deception and lies.
Their Strawberry Shortcake cupcake was not made from real strawberries, either, but rather that stomach-churning, fake-me-out chemical strawberry flavor that probably comes from this rather than these.  

Finally, did you see the carrier we got?  Our six little cupcakes were sadly squished into that container with no separators to protect them from getting all mixed together!  I feel like if you advertise selling your cupcakes in combinations of four, six, and twelve, you'd better have holders for each!

Bottom Line: Of the 4 cupcake places we visited, we ranked this one #4. We expected so much from this cupcake shop and were really disappointed by the end of the last cupcake.  We were really sad to rank this place last, though, because we really did think we were going to get some yummy cupcakes.  I'm not sure if the Monte Carlo location does its baking on-site, though, so maybe we'll chalk up the downfalls to the fact that they weren't fresh...?


Well, m'dears, THAT was our trip to Vegas.
We had so much fun together and definitely celebrated our first year together in style.
I can't wait for our second (And third! And fourth! And fifth! And...) anniversaries.

Here's to forever together!


  1. Looks like you had a great time! Cake heaven :P Not going to lie, everything was an anticlimax after the picture of the AMAZING Cookie-Monster cupcake!!

  2. Ok now I want cupcakes dagnabbit.. looks like ya'll had fun did ya gamble even a little bit?? or other then the cupcake shops did ya even leave the room roflmbo..

  3. Happy Anniversary! Those cupcakes all look TO. DIE. FOR!

  4. Anniversary's are so special.Congratulations.

    We will celebrate our 17th in a few weeks!

    So, I have a cupcake confession.

    A few years ago, StarBucks (my second home) came out with Spring Time cupcakes. There was one called "Sunshine Cupcake." Well....the name alone had me sold.

    Plus, it was all yellow and happy looking. I smile just thinking about it. So I ate sunshine cupcakes just because they made me smile. TO THINK ABOUT THE NAME!!! I don't even remember if they were remarkably delicious----although, they must have been.

    TO this day, I use the term for all sorts of things. Just this morning, I called my baby dumplin my little "sunshine cupcake."

    So, thats my story. Sometimes we buy things and enjoy them because of the feeling we get when we hear the name or see the color, I guess!! Silly!

    Also, why are we not managing a bakery or something along these lines again? Refresh my memory? It seems a no-brainer as far as job hunting goes....

  5. Happy Anniversary! I loved taking a look at all the different cupcake shops ~ that must have been so fun!

  6. Happy Happy Happy Anniversary!! Good for you two to go to such fun! The number one cupcake spot looks wonderfully fun and satisfying for cupcake building. I needed them for my cupcake tower to come out right... But who knew there were so many cupcake shops in Vegas? Not me! :)

  7. I jsut love your site design. Super Cute! And it looks like you had a blast in vegas. I thinks its so neat that you went around to different cup cake shops. My husband and I are going to vegas in march. And I am deffinately going to tell him about mad hatters!

    What a fun read Im so glad you posted it.
    Congrats on your first year!