Oh Disneyland, you do everything right!
Well, *mostly* everything. Its no secret that we’ve had difficulty finding delicious cupcakes that were made by people other than us. Yes that is a boldly arrogant statement, I know, but um, its true!! In fact I have a theory about that – I think it may have to do with the perception of the cupcake. Let me explain: the cupcakes look beautiful, the shop they came from is adorable, the patrons had a great experience with the guys and gals working in the shop and thus they believe the cupcake to be delicious. Its much like this test I saw on the Food Network: Ted Allen and the Food Network crew bought some frozen dishes from Costco and did an experiment, they put the food on paper plates and served it in a plain, homely diner and the people rated the quality and taste very low. They took that same food, put it on fancy plates, arranged like an expensive meal at an upscale dining spot, and served it in a beautiful dining room and it was rated at the top of the scale. I think this is happening with cupcakes – the boutique nature of them and the flashy decorating makes up for the lack yumminess….for most people that is. But not us. So, either we have advanced palates that can’t be fooled by sparkles and swirls of pretty pink frosting, or I’m completely wrong and possibly off my rocker…
At any rate, at a recent trip to Disneyland, I decided I must try their cupcakes. They don’t often disappoint when it comes to sweets, so I had high expectations. And they look gorgeous, so who wouldn’t want to try them?
Now, since I couldn’t decide what flavor I wanted and these things were pretty big, I got the sampler pack of minis. This included a chocolate with chocolate ganache frosting, a chocolate with vanilla buttercram, a chocolate with peanut frosting, a vanilla with coconut frosting, a red velvet with cream cheese frosting, and a carrot cake with cream cheese frosting. Unfortunately I don’t have a picture for you all because the kid at the register was packing purchases into bags at an ungodly speed because it was past midnight and Main Street was closing soon, so, my sampler got squished. But we soldiered on and ate the smooshed cakes anyway, and I have to say that I was more pleased by these than any others so far.
The cake on all that I tasted was very moist and pretty light. The carrot cake was a bit denser, but tasted very good and was still moist. The red velvet was the first of its kind that didn’t taste like a bottle of food coloring. It was a teensy bit heavy on the almond paste, but had no icky chemical taste to it at all, and it was still a lovely shade of red and very moist and springy. The fostings are what would make or break the cupcake as a whole.
The chocolate ganache was so good, omg, I didn’t even offer KT a taste. I’d purchase those again in an instant. The vanilla buttercream was a thumbs down for both of us; but I’ll admit that we are not buttercream fans, so buttercream lovers may really enjoy it. The peanut frosting was just….odd, it didn’t taste like a frosting, it tasted like chopped peanuts and was more candy-like. It didn’t taste bad, but it wasn’t something I like on top of a cupcake, personally. Again, peanut lovers might really enjoy them. The cream cheese frosting was yum. On the carrot cake it was also topped with white chocolate strips colored to look like carrot and it was perfect, not too sweet so the chocolate flavor came through. KT gave a thumbs up to the coconut frosting, but I hate coconut so I’ll keep my bias to myself. If she liked it, I give it my stamp of approval as well.
So far these are the first cupcakes I’d purchase again, if only in select flavors. When I go back to Disneyland in December I plan on trying the big ones, I’m sure the chocolate will be awesome, and I’m looking forward to trying lemon since they didn’t have one in the mini sampler. In the meantime, if any of you fellow cupcake lovers find yourselves at Disneyland, get a cupcake! And then tell us what you think!