Monday, February 1, 2010

The Ultimate DC Cupcake: Georgetown Cupcake or Baked and Wired?

DC is home to a number of followers in the latest food trends; in the last few years, several gourmet cupcake bakeries have sprung up akin to the New York City leaders in the craft. They range from the terrible to the divine. In the latter category, two local shops really stand out: Georgetown Cupcake and Baked and Wired.

Yesterday afternoon, after B's and my respective Sunday morning rituals, we stopped by Georgetown Cupcake for the first time in almost a year. The reason for this hiatus was not the cupcakes, but the inevitable frustration of the old locale's cramped space and inefficient management of their ridiculously long lines. Georgetown Cupcake recently moved to a new location on M Street which is much bigger and better designed, if only slightly more efficient. The issue with the new space is that the street entrance forces customers to cut through the line to get in line, but, unlike in the old storefront, customers order and pay the cashier first, and then you wait for their cupcakes.

These treats are $2.75 each and the flavors rotate daily with some staples making a constant appearance: vanilla, chocolate, red velvet etc. The cupcakes are on the smaller side, but make up for their size with rich and genuine flavor. They are also cute. Actually the entire concept is cute from the pink boxes to the sugar adornments. Yesterday B had the vanilla squared while I opted for the chocolate mint. The frosting on both was a rich, whipped buttercream, and the cake was moist and flavorful.

The cupcakes are delicious, this chain is getting national attention, and we will be back and love purchasing these treats as gifts due to both the taste and packaging; but I think the true standout cupcake star is deeper into the bowels of Georgetown: Baked and Wired.

Baked and Wired is a much less-hyped--even though it has gained some pretty cool press--half coffee shop, half bakery. This place is a bit hard to locate, behind the C&O Canal but before you hit the Potomac on Thomas Jefferson Street. You will not find a line stretching out the door, or an annoying gaggle of college-aged tourists, but the shop is marked by a telltale hot pink painted bicycle out front. This is a much crunchier operation, leaning more toward the attitude for which places like these is often known. Their website is not flashy and in fact, and true to form, cuts off some key details, like the description of each cupcake.

The cupcakes are heavenly; they are more like individual cakes than a cupcake and are about twice the size of their Georgetown brethren. This is the moistest cupcake I have ever tasted, topped with a very generous portion of rich frosting that is denser than the butter cream used by Georgetown. These cupcakes run $3.50 apiece and are definitely sharable. My favorite is Teresa's Birthday Cake, but I have never tried one that I would not indulge in again.

If I had to choose (glad I don't) my vote would go to Baked and Wired over Georgetown Cupcake, but I have no doubt that we will continue to patronize both in the future.

Baked & Wired on Urbanspoon

1 comment:

  1. ok so i have to disagree w/ you: hello cupcake is not terrible! some friends brought us a 1/2 dozen variety pack for the new year and each was tasty.
    although i do agree that georgetown cupcake is much better. haven't yet tried baked&wired, but it's on my 'to do' list!!