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Cupcake Crazy (flour girls, swirls, bake sale)

s
Suresh Mar 3, 2008 10:00 AM

During the weekend, I hopped in the car and drove to all the little cupcake joints out of the city to finish part 2 of my cupcake roundup. Here's the very short version;

Flour girls;
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Basically just outside of downtown milton in what looks like an office building from the street. The ladies are very nice, there is a small lounge area for you to wait if you have put custom orders or waiting for cakes.

The cupcakes are dressed with heavy buttercream. Can't have more than one, because they're quite rich. The cakes themselves are fairly moist, but i noticed 2 were oily. Service was pleasant.
$2.50 each

Swirls;
=====
In cozy streetsville, chuck is a phenomenal host there. Besides cupcakes, he also served us the best damn chocolate chip cookies and brownies i have had in a very long time.

The cakes had a very soft and bouncy texture and were not too heavy. The mangolicious cupcake had infused mango in the cake which you could smell even before eating.

The icing at swirls has to be the best i have tasted thus far anywhere. The consistency is very similiar to buttercream, but the taste is very light and creamy like whipped cream. It's incredibly light, giving maximum exposure to the flavour rather than any heaviness. The red velvet, mangolicious, chocoholic were the best. Red velvet was my favourite (red chocolate cake with cream cheese topping).
Chuck hails from Manhattan and has followed the magnolia craze to toronto...He probably has the largest variety of cupcakes.
$1.75 each

Bake sale;
=======
The attitude is pretty abrasive at this place. I basically had to force the staff to sell me some cupcakes here, along with some lemon squares, a brownies (I spent over $40 and couldn't even get a smile)...service aside..

The cupcakes are good, i don't like the cake as much as they were too dense that particular day. Most of my friends that sampled it love it but mentioned that the icing was a bit too heavy. It's not buttercream but still quite a bit oily.
They only make 2 varieties here, and 2 different cakes (choc-vanilla)

Now on to all these "online only" cupcake vendors, as I think i've pretty much covered all the retail shops (currently open).

I tried about 4-6 varieties from each place, and most tasted great even after a day of sitting around.

Anyone know if cupcake boutique has a retail store yet?

  1. rosieintoronto Mar 1, 2013 10:59 AM

    I love the sweetheart chocolate cake at Bake Sale, but did find the service lacking at the Kingsway location. I prefer their location at Six Points Plaza. I absolutely love their peanut butter cupcakes.

    1 Reply
    1. re: rosieintoronto
      Ediblethoughts Mar 1, 2013 05:26 PM

      Is it dark chocolate or milk?

    2. g
      Galine Jan 22, 2009 08:27 AM

      I always take my little cousins to Swirls whenever they visit! The owner is very nice, it's well priced, and the cupcakes are delicious!

      2 Replies
      1. re: Galine
        red dragon Jun 11, 2010 04:53 PM

        Ok, finally made it to Swirls a few weeks ago but didn't get a chance to post my feedback here. Geesh, I haven't been posting any really good reviews, so sorry, it must sound like I don't like anything, but just being honest in my feedback!

        As others had warned, not really a bakery that you'd want to go out of your way and it was a good 45 minute drive for me!

        The chocolate cupcake was good and moist, not as greasy as the ones at TWCS, the frostings are like everyone said, very much like whipped cream.

        The vanilla cupcakes (all the white cupcakes were the same, plain vanilla cupcake with just the frosting that makes them a different flavor) tasted awful. They tasted like the supermarket ones, with a really bad aftertaste.

        I called and spoke to the owner to try to get more info and was "told" the frosting consists of butter, icing sugar and cream cheese, but there is NO hint of cream cheese in any of the cupcakes, not even the red velvet.

        The mango frosting tasted very artificial. In closing, would not return.

        I bought groupons for "The Love of Cake" and that will be my next try!

        I took pictures of Swirls cupcakes, but really, not worth posting.

        1. re: red dragon
          Full tummy Jun 11, 2010 10:04 PM

          Thanks, red dragon. I had heard good things about Swirls, then not good things. Had thought initially to make a trip out, then decided against. Your review clinches the against. I, too, bought the Groupon and look forward to trying it.

      2. c
        chefmama Jan 21, 2009 06:41 PM

        There is a coupon for a GTA cupcake place made-to-order - Cakes by Lisa/Baked with Joy at http://www.kidsaroundcanada.com/party...

        1. c
          ChantelToronto Jan 4, 2009 12:29 PM

          So Today I had Swirls cupcakes for the first time. I WAS NOT IMPRESSED AT ALL and if I had my way I would get my money, my time, and my pre caloric weight back! I am too smart to believe that these cupcakes are baked daily. I would MORE believe that they are baked months in advance and are thawed out the night before, and dressed up the next morning in cheap topping... not icing, topping! As in, the stuff you get at the grocery store in the non refrigerated isles that keep in edible condition for months on end. The price is quite cheap for cupcakes because they don't appear to use any high quality anything. These cupcakes were tough, and the topping (flavoured butter cream, which is also known as 'mock cream' ... which relies heavily on margarine and/or veggie shortening) had no substance. A good cream cheese icing is made of butter, icing sugar, cream cheese and vanilla... the trick is to get good consistency :-)I will continue on my trek to descent cupcakes.

          BUYER BEWARE!

          32 Replies
          1. re: ChantelToronto
            s
            Suresh Jan 5, 2009 06:23 AM

            Curious...where have you had good cupcakes so far? You seem to be going out of your way to bash swirls.

            1. re: Suresh
              s
              saugamom Jan 8, 2009 10:25 PM

              actually, i agree with chantel.
              i was so excited when i found swirls - it's a couple doors down from my fav shwarma.
              i had a red velvet cupcake, and it was terrible. maybe it was an off day or something, but it was stale and dry, and the icing tasted like betty crocker.
              i'm not even very picky - it truly was gross.

              1. re: saugamom
                red dragon May 12, 2010 07:25 AM

                Wow, how disappointing. I am a cupcake crazed baker and quite proud of my own creations, and always want to try other cupcakes. I was going to drive to Etobicoke to try Bakesale, but also Swirls. After reading this, I'll have to re-think, both locations are quite far from me (east end of Toronto) and while I don't mind to drive long distance for great food, I don't want to waste my time either. Hmmm, will have to think it over ...

                The buttercream at Swirls sounds like it's an Italian or Swiss Meringue buttercream, which I've finally perfected, but it can taste quite buttery/greasy. Then again, if Swirls is selling their cupcakes for 1.75 (which is very low priced compared to others that sell upwards of 2.50 to 3.00), I wonder what type of icing it is (and ingredients).

                Here's a picture of a recent cupcake I made!

                 
                1. re: red dragon
                  Full tummy May 12, 2010 07:48 AM

                  red dragon, I don't think Swirls is a cooked buttercream of any sort. Other posters have stated that they know Swirls uses a mix both for the cake and the frosting.

                  I don't think Bakesale is a destination bakery, but who am I to judge what someone else would go that distance for, haha. I am pretty sure their frosting is an American style buttercream.

                  Have you had cupcakes from the Wedding Cake Shoppe? Those are personally my favourite in the city, and one of the few that's made with a European buttercream, which is my preference.

                  And, btw, I have had the Flour Girls cupcakes and also love them. The buttercream is lighter than some and is also European style. Unlike the OP, I had no difficulty downing many in one sitting. But I know some find that style of frosting overwhelming. I find American buttercreams gritty and metallic on my teeth, plus overly sweet. So, I tend not to be able to eat more than one of those, unless I remove the frosting...

                  -----
                  The Wedding Cake Shoppe
                  859 College St, Toronto, ON M6H, CA

                  1. re: Full tummy
                    red dragon May 12, 2010 12:30 PM

                    Hi Full tummy - I've been known to drive to Buffalo for a good burger at Red Robin, food is my passion! Then again, everyone's tastes are different ...

                    I haven't tried Wedding Cake Shoppe. They sound yummy!

                    I have two recipes that I normally use, one is the regular buttercream (it's called so many names, but it's just butter, icing sugar, vanilla extract and milk or cream), this recipe I whip it for a long time, so it's not grainy, but it is very sweet. I like the Italian Swiss buttercream which is heated sugar syrup poured slowly over beaten egg whites, it's very light, fluffy, creamy, but imo, is buttery/greasy in taste. I mix the cupcake recipes to match the frosting to balance the flavors out.

                    Lots of mixed reviews over different foods here, but I guess the real test is to go and try it myself.

                    1. re: red dragon
                      Full tummy May 12, 2010 12:36 PM

                      Yup. To me The Wedding Cake Shoppe cupcakes are the ideal to which I would aspire in my home baking, and by the looks of your cupcake, you're on your way. On the other hand, Bake Sale is the best I would expect to be served by a competent but not particularly ambitious home baker. They both have their place. TWCS is a destination for me, but not Bake Sale, alas.

                      Do share your experiences, though.

                      -----
                      The Wedding Cake Shoppe
                      859 College St, Toronto, ON M6H, CA

                  2. re: red dragon
                    c
                    cheesymama May 12, 2010 08:08 AM

                    I'm also in the east end and drove to Swirls last week. I will not being doing it again. There was nothing special about the cupcakes there. And I/we tried a lot of flavours. The cake itself was moist and tasty, the vanilla more so than the chocolate. The icing left something to be desired, it was too light for me. I like an icing that's a little more dense, not quite so whipped.
                    If your cupcake tastes half as good as it looks you've got Swirls beat!
                    Of, and I'm pretty sure their cupcakes were $2.25 each.

                    1. re: cheesymama
                      red dragon May 12, 2010 12:34 PM

                      Hi Cheesymama,
                      Sorry to hear you had a disappointing experience (plus the drive). I had that problem at a bakery on Queen Street, can't remember the name, OMG, what a drive that was! The vanilla and white chocolate were moist, the chocolate not so much.

                      Thanks for the compliment; friends, colleagues, etc, love my cupcakes. I even drove to Golda's in Mississauga to get different cupcake liners, the one pictured is very "Martha" in a chocolate brown!

                      Here's a coconut cupcake I also made recently (with coconut milk)! I absolutely love cake of any kind!

                       
                      1. re: red dragon
                        bunnylicious May 12, 2010 04:14 PM

                        I agree with the recommendation for the Wedding Cake Shoppe, they make my favourite cupcakes. I'm getting my wedding cake from there and I'm hoping it doesn't all get eaten so that I can take some home :)

                        I enjoy the treats at Bakesale, very homey stuff, but in fairness, it's nothing better than I can make at home myself and I wouldn't drive all the way across town to go there. I live a short walk away and find it great for when I need a quick sweet fix and don't feel like baking.

                        -----
                        The Wedding Cake Shoppe
                        859 College St, Toronto, ON M6H, CA

                        1. re: bunnylicious
                          red dragon May 15, 2010 01:05 PM

                          Hi Bunnylicious - just called The Wedding Cake Shoppe, have to say, they were not very helpful over the phone. I know their flavors change each day, but couldn't get any info other than they're 2.50 each. The girl actually told me to call tomorrow morning to find out what the flavors are, but I asked if they would even answer the phone that early and she said she didn't know ??

                          1. re: red dragon
                            jlunar May 15, 2010 01:08 PM

                            Though I can't speak for the service, the passionfruit icing on vanilla is my favourite at WCS. Really my favourite cupcakes in the city (not that I've done the extensive tasting the OP did).

                            1. re: red dragon
                              Full tummy May 15, 2010 02:12 PM

                              Oh, they usually have quite a few flavours. Too bad you didn't get the best impression. The cupcakes, however, are superb. Hope you do get a chance to drop by and pick some up.

                              Personally, I am a vanilla cupcake fan... And the ones at WCS are the best I've found.

                              1. re: red dragon
                                bunnylicious May 15, 2010 03:07 PM

                                I'm really sorry to hear they weren't helpful on the phone :(

                                I've tried quite a few of their flavours and have particularly enjoyed the vanilla, mango, hazelnut, peanut butter, and coconut ones. There were none that I specifically disliked, though I didn't love the mocha or the irish cream.

                                The buttercream is a cooked, "buttery" one, which is my preference but perhaps not everyone's.

                                Your coconut cupcake looks delicious by the way! From the looks of it, I dont think you'll find much better than what you can make at home :) But I do hope you'll get a chance to try the ones at WCS, i dont know of anyone who hasn't enjoyed them!

                                1. re: bunnylicious
                                  red dragon May 16, 2010 02:15 PM

                                  Hi Bunnylicious and Fulltummy!

                                  We made the drive down to The Wedding Cake Shoppe on College (and Ossignton)! We really had our hearts set on trying Swirls or BakeSale, but we were at Church/Front for brunch anyhow, it was about a 20 minute drive.

                                  We bought a 6 pack ($13 something), although I don't know how the two of us will eat them! I personally don't like cupcakes pass day 2. We got hazelnut, banana cream, white chocolate, strawberry, coconut and raspberry. We haven't tried them yet, will post later, but wanted to share pictures.

                                  What surprised me is that at 12:30 pm (they open at 11am on Sundays), they were already sold out of cookies and cream. We could have gotten them, but thought about what flavors to buy and the couple in front of us bought them all while we were deciding. Oh well.

                                  Also, they're cupcakes - the cake part, only come in two flavors, vanilla and chocolate (this is what the girl told us). It's the frosting and toppings that determine the flavor. Being an avid baker, not sure how I feel about that. It's quite easy to make a profit on just making two cake batters and then dressing them to different flavors. Did you know that?

                                  I had hoped for some different "cake" flavors. I did like the idea of the earl grey tea with orange frosting for example at "Life is Sweet." I understand every bakery is different, just sharing my feedback.

                                  Anyhow, here are my pictures and I'll post back later about the taste!

                                   
                                   
                                   
                                   
                                   
                                   
                                  1. re: red dragon
                                    Full tummy May 16, 2010 02:27 PM

                                    Oh gosh, those pictures are a tease!!! Yes, I know about the cake base, and it's not so much of an issue for me since I prefer vanilla. What they do with their icings is fun, though, from what I remember of trying some other flavours. While I do like the flavours of the cake portion of the cupcakes at Life is Sweet, I don't like their icing, which is of the uncooked variety. When I bought cupcakes at Life is Sweet, I took the icing off and ate the cake part, which makes it an expensive proposition...

                                    I wish I were like you--unable to down that many cupcakes in a day, but, unfortunately, Hubby and I have no problem, hahahaha. WCS cupcakes have no chance of going stale with us!

                                    1. re: Full tummy
                                      red dragon May 16, 2010 02:34 PM

                                      Too funny! We went to Hot House Cafe for their buffet brunch and I had 4 slices of cake, so I was really all caked out!

                                      Yes, I know what you mean about the icing at Life is Sweet, it's a plain buttercream and very sweet. I made Italian Meringue Buttercream for the first time a few months ago (when I became cupcake crazed) and it came out so well, after I read the horror stories from other posters about it coming out wrong. I was so happy that I got it right (with a candy thermometer and a close eye).

                                      I do prefer the cooked buttercreams (with a hot sugar syrup slowly poured into beaten egg whites). It can be a bit buttery for me, so i do switch to a regular buttercream, depending on what type of cake I'm making, to balance it all out.

                                      A trick to making regular buttercream less sweet is adding a bit of kosher salt and fresh lemon juice. I thought it was weird at first, but it does help.

                                      Need to take some alka seltzer before tackling the cupcakes!! :)

                                      1. re: red dragon
                                        Full tummy May 16, 2010 02:42 PM

                                        OK, well.... I suppose if I had just been to a brunch buffet and eaten four slices of cake, I might be hard-pressed to eat my share of a six-pack of cupcakes. At least for a few hours...

                                        1. re: red dragon
                                          bunnylicious May 17, 2010 04:38 PM

                                          Hi red dragon, did you have a chance to try the cupcakes?

                                          1. re: bunnylicious
                                            red dragon May 18, 2010 08:15 AM

                                            Hi bunnylicious and all, sorry for the late reply ... on vacation.

                                            Yes, we finally tried the cupcakes. They are moist, even on day three. We've been eating out so much that we haven't had room to eat them all in one sitting. And cupcakes are my passion!

                                            I know TWCS (The Wedding Cake Shoppe) has received great reviews, but need to be honest here, and again, just our opinion.

                                            The chocolate cake was extremely moist and dark chocolate in taste, but very oily. You can see the high oil content glistening in the cake when you eat it. It leaves a bit of an oily taste in the mouth. My husband didn't like it at all, and he loves dark chocolate cake. I did speak to the owner, Cindy, who confirmed it was an oil based cake (no butter).

                                            The flavoured butter creams were very subtle, with the exception of the raspberry one. The banana cream was bland and tasted pretty much like a vanilla butter cream, the white chocolate was subtle as well, but I could taste “some” white chocolate. The coconut was good.

                                            Cindy did say that on occasion, they do have other "cake" based flavours other than vanilla and chocolate, but those were the standard. They do make carrot, red velvet and lemon poppy seed, but not sure what days that would be. We went on a Sunday and missed the red velvet and the cookies and cream was sold out by 12:30pm.

                                            The butter cream is a Swiss Meringue (confirmed by Cindy) which I immediately identified by just looking at the cupcakes (I personally make Italian Meringue all the time). Very smooth, buttery, not too sweet.

                                            Again, the cakes are moist, but I find the butter creams very subtle in flavour. As I had posted above, we bought a 6 pack (raspberry (chocolate cake), banana cream (white cake), white chocolate (white cake), hazelnut (chocolate cake), coconut (white cake), strawberry (white cake).

                                            Chowhounders need to try it out to form their own opinions. I always think that everyone’s tastes are different and what one person thinks is great, could be experienced by someone else as not so great, and vice versa, so we do respect that when posting our reviews.

                                            We definitely will make our way to some other cupcake places, including Flourgirls in Milton.

                                            Hubby said he would not buy from TWCS again and rated it a 6 out of 10. I thought they were pretty good, but wouldn’t drive out of my way for them.

                                            1. re: red dragon
                                              Full tummy May 18, 2010 10:31 AM

                                              Oh, too bad you didn't like them so much... To each his/her own, I suppose. Since I typically go for vanilla buttercream on vanilla cake, I guess my opinion's not much to go by if you're looking for other flavours, hahaha...

                                              1. re: Full tummy
                                                red dragon May 18, 2010 06:53 PM

                                                Oh no, I completely understand, if you like vanilla/vanilla, I can see how it would be amazing. The vanilla is indeed very moist. I've been cooking and baking since I was little so of course nothing beats home cooking/baking, but I certainly love to try other bakeries!

                                              2. re: red dragon
                                                bunnylicious May 18, 2010 02:43 PM

                                                I'm glad you at least got to try them. A chacun ses gouts. :) If I discover any other cupcakes I enjoy, I'll let you know. Though I really shouldn't be eating cupcakes what with the wedding coming up ... :)

                                                1. re: bunnylicious
                                                  red dragon May 18, 2010 06:55 PM

                                                  I'll let you know if/when I make it to Milton for Flourgirls! I think Swirls is next on our to do list this week! I always gain weight on vacation, and this is a 'staycation."

                                                  I read about your upcoming wedding and cake from TWCS, tell me about your wedding cake flavor and design!

                                                  1. re: red dragon
                                                    bunnylicious May 22, 2010 02:58 PM

                                                    I will try to post a picture after the wedding (in August), the design is basically three tiers but the bottom one is actually a double-tier, so it's pretty tall and narrow. It's pretty simple, with some sugar swirls around the cake and then a blown sugar bubble as the topper. They actually had the design in their window for a while though I hear it's gone now. As for flavours... we're sticking to vanilla cake and we'll probably have mango, hazelnut, and vanilla :) Had a few of their cupcakes this week (treat from my fiance - coconut, lemon, and a marble flavour) and enjoyed them :)

                                                    1. re: bunnylicious
                                                      red dragon May 23, 2010 02:39 PM

                                                      Your cake sounds very pretty and I'm sure your guests will enjoy!

                        2. re: jillybean38
                          Full tummy Jan 22, 2009 06:40 AM

                          I love buttercream, the kind made with real butter and eggs, and I think the one on flourgirls' cupcakes is excellent; before I ordered their cupcakes I called and asked if the icing is made with butter, not shortening, and they told me yes. I have no problem with someone not liking buttercream, but, in my opinion, it is important to know whether it's a shortening-based "buttercream" or a butter-based buttercream, a cooked buttercream or an uncooked buttercream. (The word "buttercream is used to identify a wide range of different icings. Some people may like one and not the other.) If Swirls is, in fact, using margarine or shortening as their frosting base, then I wouldn't like their cupcakes either. I wonder if anyone has asked the people at Swirls what kind of frosting they're using, as there have been a number of accusations about this.

                          1. re: Full tummy
                            Ediblethoughts Jan 22, 2009 07:20 AM

                            I didn't know "real" bakeries (i.e. not counting cheap stuff such as Dominion might produce) would use shortening for icing! That sounds so completely disgusting. I recently picked up some cupcakes at Yummy Stuff and I love that icing--which I assume to be butter cream. But then I tend to like a "thicker" icing. If it's too light and fluffy, it reminds me of sweet butter which I find unpleasant. I like my icing to be closer to vanilla fudge (you know, within reason) than whipped butter.

                            1. re: Ediblethoughts
                              Full tummy Jan 22, 2009 08:56 AM

                              I know that Lollicakes, on Mt. Pleasant, uses something other than butter, for sure, as they specifically state there's no dairy in their cupcakes. I wouldn't be surprised if other places in the city do so as well, or at least "stretch" their icing with shortening.

                              I also believe most people can't tell what a frosting is made of, though they know definitively whether they like it or not. (I also know many people who can't tell the difference between whipped cream and Dream Whip/Cool Whip!!!!)

                              To clear up the confusion regarding what the Swirls' cupcake frosting is actually made of, I called Swirls and asked. I was told it's made of butter, cream cheese, and powdered sugar. No shortening or margarine.

                            2. re: Full tummy
                              j
                              jillybean38 Jan 22, 2009 11:45 AM

                              When I went o flourgirls I met the owner and she was lovely and yes she did say that she used only butter and not marg or shortening. I just find that when the icing gets too airy and fluffy it reminds me of coolwhip - that's not a good thing. My preference to icing is more along the lines of Ediblethoughts. Where is Yummy Stuff?

                              1. re: jillybean38
                                Ediblethoughts Jan 23, 2009 04:53 AM

                                Yummy Stuff is on 1660 Queen W. I'm pretty sure their cupcakes (the red velvet ones anyway) are also available at times during the week at the Caffe Doria on Yonge near Rosedale (which is much closer to me). They also have a really good chocolate icing on chocolate cupcake (very thick icing that is also more fudgy) which comes from another supplier (can't recall which one but I've never seen these cupcakes elsewhere) at Caffe Doria which usually come in on a different day during the week.

                                1. re: Ediblethoughts
                                  j
                                  jillybean38 Jan 23, 2009 04:57 AM

                                  Thanks - they sound so good. I can't wait to try them.

                                  1. re: jillybean38
                                    Ediblethoughts Jan 23, 2009 05:45 AM

                                    Let me know what you think of them if you do try them.

                        3. BokChoi Nov 16, 2008 05:55 AM

                          Great summary Suresh. Thanks. Swirls sounds great. Thanks for the review.

                          1. l
                            lbh Nov 14, 2008 07:10 PM

                            Swirls cupcakes are very good. I tried the mango and a lemon one. The cake and icing were light which I liked. My favourite cupcakes in the city are from It's the Icing on the Cake in Leslieville. They only sell chocolate and vanilla, but they are amazing!

                            1. Ediblethoughts Apr 19, 2008 03:38 PM

                              I went to Caffe Doria today on Yonge (N. of Rosedale) and I'm pretty sure their cupcakes are from Swirl since they call the white icing over red/chocolate cupcake Red Velvet. I really liked the red velvet (LOVED the white icing) and I loved, loved the chocolate icing on chocolate cake (and I usually more a fan of vanilla icing on chocolate cake). After trying the cupcakes around the city (at Cupcakes, Dufflets, etc.) I'd given up on good cupcakes. But these were the best I've ever tried. And I'm now officially addicted.

                              1 Reply
                              1. re: Ediblethoughts
                                Ediblethoughts Apr 20, 2008 07:53 AM

                                Scratch what I said above. The cupcakes at Caffe Doria are from Circles and Squares.

                              2. a
                                afternoonveggiedelight Mar 22, 2008 02:51 PM

                                While I'm an admitted cupcake-aholic, I haven't sampled that many around town. My favourites are from All the Best Fine Foods on Yonge. I prefer the ones with the fudge icing, but the cake itself tends to be a little on the dry side if they aren't fresh that day. For larger cupcakes I go to Bread & Roses on Bloor. They are cheaper than the All the Best cupcakes, but twice the size. Always moist and fresh with a ribbon of chocolate ganache in the centre, chocolate icing and colourful sprinkles. Not to mention they taste amazing and the staff are super friendly, they won't lock you out at 5:59 like some places.

                                I went to the Cupcake Shoppe on Yonge, north of Eglinton a few years ago expecting to be wowed and was thoroughly let down. They are colourful and cute, but totally bland.

                                1. mikeb Mar 5, 2008 06:04 AM

                                  FYI the Cupcakery on St Clair, west of Oakwood, is having their grand opening on March 15.

                                  http://www.thecupcakeryto.com

                                  2 Replies
                                  1. re: mikeb
                                    s
                                    Suresh Mar 5, 2008 10:28 AM

                                    I just got an email about that place yesterday. Looking forward to it.

                                    1. re: Suresh
                                      c
                                      canddlovegreatfood Mar 20, 2008 07:17 PM

                                      Sorry to say we were quite disappointed - the service was really nice and friendly and the packaging was beautiful (pink boxes, ribbons, etc) but the product - not so good. Cakes were somewhat dry and flavourless and the icing was heavy and very sugary. Although the peanut butter ones were ok (but still not great).
                                      Next day, tried Swirls for the first time and wow - great! Especially the lemon and mango ones.

                                  2. deelicious Mar 4, 2008 06:48 PM

                                    Walking past Beaver Cafe on Queen West I noticed fancy looking cupcakes. Does anybody have info on these?

                                    1. NovoCuisine Mar 4, 2008 05:43 AM

                                      I wonder if we've been to the same Swirls!

                                      I've gone twice, and both times found the cupcakes to be very heavy. The selection was quite thin on both occasions. Guy behind the counter was quite gracious, I'll give you that.

                                      Maybe the third time will be a charm.

                                      2 Replies
                                      1. re: NovoCuisine
                                        g
                                        gnr Mar 4, 2008 06:01 AM

                                        There is an amazing cupcake place in Kitchener right on King Street across from Kitchener City Hall. It is called the Cake Box/Sweet Indulgences, and the cupcakes are delicious. Lots of flavours to choose from.

                                        1. re: NovoCuisine
                                          s
                                          Suresh Mar 4, 2008 03:01 PM

                                          hm
                                          We got 6 cupcakes and they were all very light. They were fresh and we picked them up right after he had dressed the cakes with icing.
                                          I wonder if he changed his formula? When did you go Novo?

                                        2. SherylKirby Mar 3, 2008 12:17 PM

                                          Duuuude... you went for cupcakes and didn't invite me along?? I'm crushed.

                                          You managed to track down some from Circles and Squares, right? Because nothing else in the city compares to theirs.

                                          3 Replies
                                          1. re: SherylKirby
                                            s
                                            Suresh Mar 3, 2008 12:20 PM

                                            Nope.
                                            Circles and squares was the only one left retail wise. I had totally forgotton about that one during the weekend.
                                            When are you free? I need a guide.

                                            :)

                                            1. re: Suresh
                                              c
                                              City_West Mar 3, 2008 01:18 PM

                                              Circles & Square isn't really open like a retail store, from what I know they mostly make desserts for some restaurants around town. I think you can just call them and ask for them to make some for you, which I think is really cool. I ordered some and they were just finishing icing them as I came to pick them up.

                                              1. re: Suresh
                                                SherylKirby Mar 5, 2008 06:09 AM

                                                They sell their stuff through Pusateri's.

                                            2. Manybears Mar 3, 2008 10:53 AM

                                              Hot cupcake curses! After all the previous cupcake threads I convinced Mr. Manybears to go to Streetsville (by transit from downtown TO! what a lovely man) and get me some birthday cupcakes from Swirls. They were lovely, home-made looking affairs, complete with my initials in pink and green icing on top of the regular buttercream. The only disappointment: he asked for "a variety of flavours" and got 3 chococlate and 3 vanilla-- I really wanted to try the mango and red velvet. Anyway, they were pretty good, but not life-alteringly delicious. The cake was excellent texture, not dry but not sticky either. I found the icing a little bit too much like whipped butter for my tastes, but it was ok. The chocolate (yum) was much better than the vanilla, which I thought was a little plain.

                                              I vote Swirls better than the Cupcake Shoppe (by a long shot) but not as good as Magnolia or Cocoa Locale in Montreal-- please note my limited experience. I intend to give Life Is Sweet a go this week if I can get out there.

                                              1. Full tummy Mar 3, 2008 10:27 AM

                                                Hey, Suresh, thanks for the feedback. I haven't tried Swirls. Now that you've had the smooth buttercream from Flourgirls, how would you say that compares with the icing from Life is Sweet, or some of the other places you've been to? (I loved the Flourgirls icing and am a fan of cooked buttercream icings, as I find the uncooked icings too grainy.)

                                                1 Reply
                                                1. re: Full tummy
                                                  s
                                                  Suresh Mar 4, 2008 05:35 AM

                                                  The Flourgirls icing is similiar in look to that of the cupcake shoppe or swirls...It's buttercream but the flourgirls version tastes much better when compared to the cupcake shopp as it is lighter, less dense, smoother like you mentioned. Personally I think the cupcake shoppe has the worst buttercream in the city.

                                                  I mentioned that, to me the flourgirls buttercream was heavy, because i don't prefer buttercream as much as i do the sugar icing (as long as its not too grainy either). So this is a personal choice

                                                  Life is sweet has great icing, its not as heavy as the buttercream versions but it is definitely sweeter. (it's one of my favourites so far)

                                                  One good thing about the flourgirls cupcakes is that there is no buttery aftertaste on the top of your tongue afterwards. So in terms of buttercream, flourgirls is great.

                                                  You should also try swirls because it is even lighter and smoother than flourgirls. Some don't like the 'whipped cream' taste, personally i found it great.

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