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Vanilla Bake Shop

d
dinami Jul 9, 2007 03:52 PM

I just checked out their website and I can't wait to try their baked goods! It all sounds so divine, half of me hopes it's great and half of me hopes it's not since it's only a few blocks from my work!! It opens tomorrow!

http://www.vanillabakeshop.com/index....

  1. n
    NYCnowLA Jul 10, 2007 02:42 PM

    tried it today. it wasn't crowded when i walked in but by the time i left the line was out the door. i brought home the vanilla bean and mother's bithday cake (i think that's what it was called) to sample. these are my kind of cupcakes! i have i the past tried cupcakes from danties, my little cupcake and yummys but these are my favorite. they are the closet to the ones i miiss from new york at sugar sweet sunshine, only these are better!

    2 Replies
    1. re: NYCnowLA
      d
      dinami Jul 10, 2007 04:06 PM

      My co-worker bought 6 mini cupcakes (2 vanilla, 2 chocolate, and 2 pumpkin) I tasted the vanilla and it was SO good! Very strong in vanilla flavor, nice and cakey. I prefer a thicker frosting but that's just my preference. I do think I have a new favorite cupcake place! I'm going there tomorrow morning to check it out.

      1. re: dinami
        mollyomormon Jul 10, 2007 05:56 PM

        I hope you get to try the pumpkin ones...or that I do soon! It's so hard to find places that offer pumpkin flavored baked goods at non-fall times of the year.

    2. j
      jeebo Jul 10, 2007 09:33 PM

      Went there in the afternoon and got red velvet, pumpkin and black & white. They all tasted delicious and seemed to be made from high quality ingredient. The red velvet is moist and i think, better than the ones at Yummy Cupcakes and even Susie Cakes. Only thing is that they don't have a wide selection in cupcakes as Yummy or Sprinkles. I saw they also offer specialty layered cakes in old-fashioned jars - multiberry shortcakes, tiramisu, banana pudding and chocolate. That'll be my next thing to try there.

      2 Replies
      1. re: jeebo
        d
        dinami Jul 11, 2007 10:01 AM

        I went there this morning and got 6 mini cupcakes (will try them out tonight with my mom, but I gave the bittersweet chocolate one to my boss). I asked them if they will have cakes by the slice available, and she said yes, perhaps sometime next week. They were still setting up when I got there right at 9, but everything looked so good, especially the layered desserts in the jars! And they even had mini multiberry shortcake jars available! This place is going to be very dangerous since I work a block away!

        1. re: dinami
          h
          highforpie Jul 11, 2007 04:02 PM

          I went today and picked up four cupcakes-Mom's B-Day Cake (vanilla with milk chocolate frosting), banana chocolate chip with cream cheese frosting, chocolate with vanilla bean frosting, and red velvet. I didn't dislike them, but I think the cupcakes from Buttercake Bakery are more to my liking. I was really looking forward to them but found the cake part missing something--a bit dry and flavorless, except for the banana chocolate chip one. I enjoy when cupcakes are really moist with a bit of buttercream frosting. Again, they weren't horrible, just not my preference I guess. I would give them another try but wouldn't go out of my way for them.

      2. PlatypusJ Jul 11, 2007 04:45 PM

        I just ordered a dozen of their "assorted ice-box minis" for my dinner party on Friday. I'll let you know how they are!

        1. c
          chowbee Jul 12, 2007 03:44 PM

          Just stopped in today. They are still working out the kinks and were out of a lot of things, but were baking more. I wound up getting the fudgey brownie, strawberries and cream, and vanilla mini-cupcakes. I ate the first two and gave the vanilla to a co-worker. I thought they were absolutely delicious. Both had an creamy frosting rather than thick and sweet kind. I thought the flavors and texture combinations were great.

          I will say, I thought the fudgey brownie was amazing and my coworker was not as impressed. She prefers more standard and sweeter icing. She also thought the outside was too dry, while I liked the contrast to the gooey inside. So, how much you love them might depend on your preferences. But it's definitely worth a shot.

          In the same general area we generally like Le Cupcake in the promenade place foodcourt. Although there is too much (very sweet) icing for me, so I usually scrape some of it off (my coworkers adore it though). They also have minis sometimes but not regularly. I was not impressed with Yummy, the one I had was very dry, and I haven't been back to try it again.

          1. f
            Frank_Santa_Monica Jul 12, 2007 05:02 PM

            I'm just coming down from my sugar rush of eating 3 mini cupcakes: mom's bday, chocolate with the green thing on top, and coconut (at least I think it's coconut). I loved them all. It's a very sophisticated cupcake, very moist, not too too sweet for goodness sakes. But, I could see how people just love that whole offensively sweet cupcake experience, and they may not go crazy of Vanilla's.

            Of all the major cupcakes places on the Westside (Sprinkles, Joans, Buttercake), this has to be the best quality.

            Finally! Santa Monica has a good bakery.

            1 Reply
            1. re: Frank_Santa_Monica
              h
              highforpie Jul 12, 2007 08:09 PM

              Yes, I think you will like these cupcakes if you prefer ones not as sweet. I guess I like them "offensvely sweet"!

            2. b
              Bite Me Jul 16, 2007 04:17 AM

              I went over there this past Saturday afternoon and bought five regular sized cupcakes for my guests that evening. I bought Red Velvet, Coconut, Black & White, and I don't recall what else. We took a sharp knife and cut them in quaarters for tastes. I didn't have any because they told me that they use the same bowls for items with nuts and i have a nut allergy so i avoid products that may have traces of nuts. However, looking at them I could tell that they were better than Sprinkles, which are like lead. And, one of my guests who is familiar with Sprinkles said that they (Vanllla Bake Shop) were better. They were delicious was the consensus. Sounds like I had a hit on my hands. I actually went in there to buy a cake, but they won't have those for a couple of weeks. The staff was very friendly but fairly inefficient it seemed to me--a lot of people milling around behind the counter and not helping the folks who came in. I couldn't linger and almost left. i had my dog and there was no where to tie her up out front so I didn't want to leave her for long on the sidewalk alone -- so I just had time to run in and point to five. They brought them to me outside! Very nice. 5 cost $17 and change. I thought the packaging was way over the top --very fancy box and bag. Very expensive looking. I am out of touch I'm sure, so don't listen to me, but I prefer a more low key look, style, and price for packaging. And, they didn't pack the five correctly. It was a box for six and they should have wadded up wax paper to fill the space. By the time I got them home, evne though i layed them on the car floor, they had toppled over and mushed together. They were okay but it wasn't the way I would have done it.

              1. PlatypusJ Jul 16, 2007 02:20 PM

                After dealing with Vanilla Bake Shop for my dinner party, I have mixed feelings.

                I ordered an assortment of a dozen "ice box minis" so that my 2 guests could have an assortment of small desserts to taste. When I came to the shop to pick up my order, I noticed that they gave me 6 each of only two types of dessert. When I asked why I only got two desserts, they said "we're still new, and this is all we made today." I felt ripped off. I placed my order 2 days in advance and specifically asked for an "assortment."

                I needed a new dessert idea, so I ended up ordering 12 mini-cupcakes and just gave the ice-box minis to some co-workers. I selected pumpkin, red velvet, mom's birthday cake, vanilla bean, peanut butter chocolate, and banana chocolate chip. They were all good, and none stood out above the rest. On the up-side, the cupcakes were very intricate for miniatures, and the icing wasn't overly sweet like it is at Sprinkles. On the downside, the cake itself seemed dry, and the packaging was a nightmare. They try to secure the cupcakes to the bottom of the box with a dollop of icing. This doesn't work, so when I opened up the box, many of them were on their sides (icing smooshed) and there was icing ALL OVER the place.

                I don't think I'll ever go back to Vanilla Bake Shop since I felt thoroughly under-serviced and ripped off. I'd definitely eat a cupcake from there if offered, however.

                5 Replies
                1. re: PlatypusJ
                  z
                  zoomchic Jul 16, 2007 02:30 PM

                  ETA: Does $3.25 seem pricey to anyone else for 1 cupcake?

                  1. re: zoomchic
                    c
                    Clyde Jul 16, 2007 02:49 PM

                    totally. i actually posted on the other vanilla bake shop thread about the dryness and the fact that you have to buy three mini's for $5. and how all my mini's smushed together in the box. $3.25 is a lot for the size of the cupcake. Yummys is down the block and most of theirs are $2.50. and they are more moist as well (i tried both places, it was an overly sugared day).

                    1. re: Clyde
                      y
                      yogachik Jul 16, 2007 03:27 PM

                      Went today and found they're closed on Mondays - will report back tomorrow.

                    2. re: zoomchic
                      b
                      Bite Me Jul 16, 2007 07:24 PM

                      yes. gotta have that fancy packaging, though, right?

                    3. re: PlatypusJ
                      b
                      Bite Me Jul 16, 2007 07:21 PM

                      a dollop of icing on the bottom???? that's beyond ridiculous. what is it, super glue? i don't know if my five had that, though i know that they toppled over in the box for six (regular sized cupcakes) because one of my guests who was helping put out dessert opened the box and put them on a plate for me.

                    4. y
                      yogachik Jul 19, 2007 11:08 AM

                      Mini-cupcakes - 4 of us, none of us liked them at all. Each and every cupcake was dry, overly sweet, and just yucky. The banana chocolate chip was pretty good, the most moist of the bunch, but the Red Velvet was just awful. Spicy carrot would be better as a cake, not a mini-cupcake.

                      We literally left the Black and White one untouched, everyone trying to get someone to take it home -

                      1. e
                        eat_n_run Jul 22, 2007 01:38 AM

                        I went to Vanilla Bake Shop today with three friends and we tried six flavors of Cupcake Babies (their name for mini-cupcakes). Of the six we tried, the five flavors that I can remember are Southern Red Velvet, Mom's Birthday Cake, Banana Chocolate Chip, Key Lime, and Meyer Lemon Raspberry.

                        I especially loved the Meyer Lemon (mmmm... great combination of flavors) and the Red Velvet (super moist with good cream cheese frosting). Mom's Bday Cake was a little boring for me - I love a good yellow cake with chocolate frosting but this one was just average.

                        The comments above about the pricing are correct - $5 for 3 mini-cupcakes is expensive. However, if you enjoy gourmet cupcake flavors in a store with cute ambience, I would highly recommend this shop!

                        1 Reply
                        1. re: eat_n_run
                          c
                          cupcake Jul 22, 2007 05:10 PM

                          How FUNNY...I went there yesterday with three friends as well, and we split six mini cupcakes as well. My favorites were the meyer lemon and the red velvet. I loved them SO MUCH, that I keep hounding these people to return ASAP with me. One friend even dreamt of them last night.

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