I posted a while ago about our somewhat disappointing visit to Cupcake Royale. Last week, Henry and I were over in Ballard picking up our car after having it serviced at the dealer, so we had no choice but to stop in for a cupcake. The cake didn’t have quite so coarse a crumb this time, but the frosting was just as disappointing. It’s like they set out to use the finest ingredients and cooking techniques to recreate canned grocery store frosting. Bleh.
On the other hand, we have found a place with cupcakes that deserve to be called Royale: Grand Central Baking Co. We stopped by their new place on Eastlake for lunch the other day. The sandwiches were great (I had a grilled Cubano… yum!), but the real hit was the dessert. Unlike Cupcake Royale, they only have a couple kinds of ‘cakes at a time, but what they lack in variety, they make up for in quality. We tried the chocolate with raspberry frosting and the pineapple-rum with coconut frosting. Both were just about perfect. Their frosting is a very light (in texture, not calories) buttercream. Neither too sweet nor too dense, it’s smooth and very tasty. Yum.
In other food-related news, Wedgwood has had a sudden explosion of coffee places. Until recently, there were just two places in the neighborhood serving decent coffee (Cafe Van Gogh and Grateful Bread, for those keeping notes). As I mentioned before, Top Pot is due to open their Wedgwood donutarium sometime soon and Starbucks opened a store a block from our house at the end of June. Then on Tuesday, we found of that one of our favorite cafes has opened a new place just a few blocks away. Café Javasti makes some mean espresso drinks and also serves very tasty crêpes (sweet and savory). We’ve been going to their original café over in Maple Leaf since Henry was a baby. We took him there this morning without saying where we were going and he was practically overcome with excitement when he saw the sign.