Buttercake vs. Sprinkles
Buttercake wins in terms of taste, for me at least. The catch is that Buttercake only makes vanilla, chocolate, and red velvet. Of those three, their vanilla and chocolate beat out Sprinkles because they have richer flavor and fluffier, lighter, yet moister texture. Buttercream frosting at Buttercake is tastier too, and comes in yellow, green, lavendar, pink, blue, and white with coconut.
Sprinkles wins ONLY for its red velvet, which was so moist and wonderful. It has a very slight edge over Buttercake's red velvet, but at twice the price I think I'm sticking with Buttercake. The more unique flavors at Sprinkles really fell flat for me.
Each's strengths below, since different people will value some qualities over others.
-I've never had to stand in line behind more than one person.
-parking's a cinch.
-MUCH cheaper cupcake ($1.75 vs. $3.25).
-TASTE!! The cupcakes are light, fluffy, not too sweet, and the frosting is not too sweet either.
-fewer sprinkles on the cupcake is a plus for me. I really don't need my frosting to be encrusted in hard sprinkles.
-availability of mini cupcakes for the indecisive(75 cents).
-availability of assorted other baked goods. The chocolate cookie is my addiction, but there are lemon bars, coffee cake, brownies, etc. that all look delicious. There's also coffee.
-friendly service. The people there are always friendly and smiling, whereas the people at Sprinkles seemed frazzled and gave me that angry young person vibe that borders on 'tude.
-non corporate atmosphere. It's not fancy, but I like Buttercake's country yellow and blue motif.
-There's a taco truck across the street during the day so I can have lunch and dessert without reparking.
-More flavors, but it's not really a plus because only the red velvet is better than Buttercake's (but I don't know if it's worth almost twice the price). The other flavors really fell flat, especially the strawberry. It tasted like a bad blueberry muffin.
-presentation. the cupcakes here are perfect and cutecutecute, like they were made by Martha. The ones at Buttercake look more like your best friend made them.
-paraphernelia. You can get coffee, t-shirts, sodas, lunchbox cupcake holders, candles, etc.
-There's seating, so you can hang out and eat your cupcake. At Buttercake I have to take my cupcake around the corner and eat it while I read the headlines at the newstand.
-The packaging is super fantastic, so if you're giving cupcakes as a present you might want to come here. Just get the red velvet; it's the only one that wows in terms of taste. Incredibly moist, fluffy, not too sweet, with rich tangy cream cheese frosting.
-The disposable forks and knives are made out of popsickle stick wood. They're really cute, and at $3.25 a cupcake I felt I deserved to take a few home with me for future dinner party use (they'll be fun serving utensils for a cheese plate).
Sprinkles is a cute store, but for $3.25 in that neighborhood I'd prefer to go to Il Cono (grapefruit gelato to die for, and super nice staff). For cupcakes, I'll be sticking to Buttercake until a better chocolate or red velvet cupcake comes along.
To burst the chow bubble - I made my own and they were better than both places! For those who love to cook -
Boxed cake mix-I use Pillsbury, SOFT Plugra instead of oil, part N.F. 1/2 and 1/2 from T.J's. instead of all H20. This makes a little denser really creamy batter. I stuffed my mini's w/strawberry jam and some w/chocolate chips. Baked and YUM! Suppose you could include a buttercream frosting - I'm not big for such so, stuffing works for me. Have Fun! :)
re: Kitchen Queen
That's not bursting a chow bubble, it's just fact that homemade (even from a box) is often better than from a store. :) yum.
My point is mostly that for a quick treat when you're not up to making your own cupcakes, Buttercake isn't that expensive and is quite tasty. Better, in fact, than most people can make at home. Sprinkles is trying to elevate cupcakes to a special occassion status, but they don't do a very good job with the more exotic flavors. I could definitely do better, and for the price I'd rather have a slice of cake at a fancy bakery.
Googling "Magnolia Vanilla Cupcakes" yields a recipe for the vaunted Magnolia cupcakes in NYC, which are fluffy and wonderful, but much sweeter than either Sprinkles or Buttercake.
My Sprinkles companion yesterday, a NYC native, said she really liked the less sweet cupcakes on the west coast but kind of missed the giant frosting dome of Magnolia.