moonbabycakes – San Francisco

San Francisco, CA 94109
(415) 480-4622

My friend Esa is obsessed with these cupcakes, and I totally understand why! It really is one of the best cupcakes in San Francisco. My friend recently purchased 300 cupcakes for a wedding, so I was lucky enough to taste 2 cupcakes. Yum!

The scene:

The owner has recently quit her full time job to open up a shop for moonbabycakes. I have no idea where the location will be, but I’m excited.

The food:

The cakes are $3 each, typical for any other designer cupcake. I’ve only tried the Oreo, Red Velvet and the Chocolate Banana, but I’ve already decided the Oreo flavor is the best cupcake I’ve ever had.

Oreo Cupcake – The Oreos are mixed in the frosting and the cake itsself. There’s no shortage of Oreos in this cupcake. The frosting isn’t too sweet and the cake is soft and dense. I like how the Oreos are roughly chopped rather than finely blended. The best part about the cupcake was the chunks of Oreos in the cake.

Chocolate Banana – This one was a little strange. It’s loaded with bananas and has a rich chocolate frosting on top. I think it wasn’t my favorite because it seemed too healthy. It was more like a muffin rather than a cupcake.

I’m excited for the owner to open her shop so I can try all the other flavors.

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Cupcake Fetish

Ok after a long hiatus, I am back to write for TheCultureBite.  There’s quite a lot that goes on in my head sometimes and I’ve been thinking it would be a good idea to publish some of my thoughts. Anyhow, my first thought is….cupcakes!!

We (my food cohort) and I (well more so me) have been on this cupcake binge. We’ve gone to a bunch of cupcake places and have tried a bunch of different ones. In the city, we’ve gone to Citizen Cake and Kara’s Cupcakes and we just got back from LA this past week and made a special trip to try Sprinkles. After sampling all of these places, we concluded that Sprinkles isn’t all that it’s hyped up to be. Citizen Cake has some good ones like the chocolate chip and the signature cupcake, which is a high end version of a Hostess cupcake but much better. Kara’s has a good Ghiradelli chocolate one and one called the Fleur Del Sel, which is a chocolate cupcake with caramel inside. Very delicious! Sprinkles didn’t have one knock out one that blew me away but their Red Velvet one was ok.

So yesterday I decided to try this place down on Union St. called That Takes The Cake. In my opinion this is hands down the best cupcakes we’ve tried so far. My description of them won’t do them justice so I’ll show you some pictures of our cupcake buffet.

First up…the Double Trouble
This is a chocolate cupcake with chocolate frosting. If you look really carefully, there is even a Rolo on top!
Next up the Chocolamento
At first I was really excited about this one because I really like mint but when I ate it, it wasn’t nearly as good as I thought it would be. I did like the Andes mint on top of the cupcake and there are small chocolate chips in the devil’s food cake which was a nice touch. The frosting wasn’t all that great though. I think because it was minty, it made it a little too sweet for my taste.
The Vanilla Vanilla
This is the typical vanilla cupcake with vanilla frosting. Haven’t tried it yet but so far I’ve been very impressed with That Takes The Cake’s cake. It’s very moist and the frosting isn’t overly sweet except for the mint one.
This is the Black and White cupcake. As you can see, I got a few of the basic ones that most bakeries have so that we could compare the basic flavors. Again, haven’t tried it yet but most likely will have some tonite. hahaha
The Strawberry Sensation
I’m not the biggest strawberry fan but I have to say, this is the best cupcake I have tried out of all the places we’ve been to. The cake is a super moist strawberry cake. It’s not overbearing with strawberry flavor which is probably why I like it so much. The frosting is a fresh strawberry buttercream frosting which is the perfect accent for this cake. I only got 2 of them but now I wish I had gotten more!
This last one is called Gentlemen Prefer Reds which is That Takes The Cake’s red velvet cupcake. This was probably my second favorite cupcake that we’ve tried. Again the cake is super moist and has that deep red color to it. You can actually taste the cream cheese in the frosting which is signature of red velvet cupcakes and it wasn’t too sweet.

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Cups and Cakes Bakery – San Francisco

Cups and Cakes BakeryCups and Cakes Bakery
Neighborhood: SOMA
451 9th St
(between Mclea Ct & Bryant St)
San Francisco, CA 94103

Rated: ♣♣♣

I saw an article on the Oatmealicious cookie at Cups and Cakes Bakery earlier this week on SF Weekly and forced my boyfriend to get one for me since he was on jury duty near by.

On Thursday, he picked me up from work with a big pink box full of cupcakes! (They were out of the Oatmealicous cookie.) Aw, thanks K!

The food:

I’ve never seen cupcakes like these before. Most designer cupcakes are perfectly symmetrical, but not these. They had a real homemade look and came in little paper cups rather than the usual cupcake wrapper. Their signature is the little slit on the side of the cup, so you can easily tear the wrapper off. K bought 6 cupcakes and the kind owner gave us a mini red velvet for free. We ended up eating the cupcakes over the next 2 days, and the cakes were still moist – a real plus. Cupcakes are $2.75 each.

Cloud 9 – I totally understand why they call it Cloud 9. This cupcake is made of a sticky and chewy angel food cake topped with a fluffy marshmallow frosting. The frosting is a little too sweet than what I’m used to, but supposedly it’s only 150 calories so it’s A-OK with me.

Cherry Soda – This one was alright. Again, too sweet for my taste. I have no idea what kind of cake they use for this. I’m guessing a caramel? The frosting had a hint of cherry soda flavor.

Vanilla & Chocolate – These are 2 separate cupcakes, but I’m just going to do a combined review. These 2 were the prettiest of the bunch. The vanilla is topped with a big swirl of vanilla frosting and a mini vanilla wafer cookie. The chocolate was topped with chocolate frosting and a chocolate chip. Both were really good. Moist cake, not too much frosting, not too sweet.

I’d like to come back to Cups and Cakes Bakery to try the Oatmealicious cookie. Two soft and chewy oatmeal cookies sandwiching cream cheese frosting and chocolate ganache. YUM. I’ve got to try one of those soon.

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Cako – San Francisco

Cako displayCako
Neighborhoods: Civic Center/Tenderloin, Union Square
211 O’farrell Street
(between Powell St & Cyril Magnin St)
San Francisco, CA 94102

Rated: ♣♣♣

Over the weekend, I drove by this neat little bakery with an impressive display of designer cupcakes in the window and I had to stop by to try one, or three. I was intrigued by the Andes mint cupcake they had at the window, but they were sold out for the day. With the interesting flavors they had to offer, I decided o get 1 lemon meringue, 1 smores and 1 chocolate raspberry.

Maybe because it was the end of the day, the cake wasn’t as moist as other cupcakes I’ve tried at other bakeries. I split each cupcake into fours and the cake just crumbled.

The cakes:

S’mores cupcake – I was very disappointed in the s’mores cupcake. The cupcake consisted of a chocolate cake with a graham cracker crust bottom and a marshmallow frosting. I give Cako credit for being original with the graham cracker lining at the bottom of the cake, but it just didn’t taste like a s’more to me. The frosting was actually crunchy as if the sugar didn’t get a chance to dissolve.

Chocolate Raspberry cupcake – Next I tried the chocolate raspberry cupcake. This cupcake was made from a chocolate cake with a raspberry frosting topped with shaved chocolate and a fresh raspberry. I’m a huge fan of the combination of chocolate and raspberry, so you can marry those two together in anything and I’d love it. The frosting was delish though. Not too sweet, and strong in the raspberry flavor.

Lemon Meringue – This one is the best cupcake out of the 3. The cupcake was made from a lemon batter with a generous amount of lemon zest, a lemon filling, and a meringue topping. The cake almost tasted like a lemon bar. The meringue was light and fluffy; a perfect match for the sweet cake.

All-in-all, Cako was a satisfactory cupcake shop. What really makes a great cupcake is the consistency of the cake. If it’s not moist, you don’t got it. I give Cako props for it’s originality though. I’d like to go back to try the Andes mint cupcake.

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