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And that's the way the cupcake crumbles

Personally, I think their 15 minutes was up YEARS ago.

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001...

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  1. Doesn't surprise me one single bit. As far as food fads go, it did last longer than I think most people expected it to.

    What's next? I've heard gourmet donut shops have been popping up in places, but I can't see them making as big an impact as cupcakes with the equipment they demand.

    1. Good. Maybe finally I can stop hearing people say they don't like cake but they like cupcakes.

      ???

      1. Totally agree. The craze was way overblown and went on far longer than deserved. Yeah, cupcakes are great but hundreds of shops charging high prices dedicated just to cupcakes? And insipid shows like "Cupcake Wars?!"

        Wonder what the new fad will be...

        2 Replies
        1. re: jlhinwa

          They say the new fad will be donuts, but if I'm not mistaken, weren't cupcakes the new donuts? Wonder how much Krispy Kreme stock is going for these days.

          Last year I heard pie was the new cupcakes. But that hasn't, pardon the pun, exactly panned out.

          1. re: TrishUntrapped

            That sounds like a good possibility. I live in the Pacific NW, where Portland has long been famous for Voodoo Dnuts (though locals say they are not the best in town) and Top Pot Donuts are a big deal in Seattle, with other specialty donut stores popping up regularly.

            Good one about the pies! :-)

        2. I knew it was going to be over quickly but wondered about the large number of cupcake stores that have opened and what they'll do.

          1. I'm not so sure that Crumbs is the so-called canary in the mine for the cupcake industry or market.

            There are issues endemic to Crumbs that are not necessarily a systemic issue with the cupcake industry.

            But time will tell.

            1. The cupcake craze may have reached its zenith but I don't think it will go away completely. At least I hope not. I mean, people were making cupcakes at home before the craze, right? And it's nice to think that if you're out and want a little bit of cake (not a whole one), a cupcake is perfect.

              1. People standing in line for cupcakes. Unbelievable. That show about those sisters in Georgetown and the utterly stupid cupcake creations. That there could even be a TV show about cupcakes...this country is really slipping.

                1 Reply
                1. re: Just Visiting

                  Yes, middle of summer 100 degree weather, 2 hour waits. Mediocre cupcakes. Crazy.

                2. I never even understood the difference between a muffin and a cupcake.

                  It had something to do with frosting, I´m sure, but I never understood how somebody wanted the frosting be as big as the cake itself.

                  And if this really was about people loving cake, why not just have a regular slice of cake instead?

                  4 Replies
                  1. re: Ramius

                    My mother always said that muffins were just a tricky way to eat cake at breakfast.

                      1. re: HillJ

                        are you saying my mom was not orignal? ;)

                        I always figured she got that from somewhere/someone but never knew who! thank you.

                        Its the little things you remember and wish you asked that hurt the most once they are gone.

                        1. re: foodieX2

                          http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zuamlB...
                          Here's Bill's bit on chocolate cake for breakfast.
                          Always fun to remember the little things!

                  2. If I had to call out a craze its frozen yogurt....quickly including or debuting now with frozen GREEK yogurt. About the same dire need as a cupcake, available everywhere and in every price range. Chobani opened a boutique shop in NYC recently.

                    And can the larger emergence of gelato be far behind?

                    1. Except on the day they opened, and they were giving their wares away, my favorite cupcake bakery never had lines out the door. And they've managed to prosper.

                      I love cupcakes, and I hope they never go away. Prior to their arrival here, it was not possible to buy cake pre-made (I don't eat supermarket chemicake) at all in my neighborhood, and it was one of the "nice" neighborhoods here.

                      I will never join you in your joy that a cakery has folded. And if what you're hating is trendy food in general, there are a couple of other trends I would much rather see die.

                      8 Replies
                      1. re: Jay F

                        I like one of the local cupcake bakeries too. We stop in once in a while or I'll get half a dozen -- or a dozen minis -- as a special treat for the family.

                        I guess I don't understand the hateful vitriol on this site toward certain things, such as cupcakes. Or in this thread, frozen yogurt. (Here's a hint -- it's been around long enough it's probably no longer a craze.)

                        Except for the big national chains, these foods are usually created in earnest with good intentions by folks who want to delight people with their foods.

                        But you have to be open to delight. I suspect from some of the gleeful snarling that takes place on Chow, that many are not so open -- that there are other agendas at play that say more about the person's outlook on life than about the thing being snarled about.

                        1. re: jmckee

                          nowhere did I profess any hate for cupcakes, yogurt or any other food item. my point was that yogurts been around a good while and so have cupcakes. i did mention Greek frozen yogurt and gelato, I didn't say I hated either. Greek frozen yogurt has been around a long time? I wasn't aware of that. And cupcakes have been around forever.

                          But, this personal reference to "snarl" and pysch 101 is really off.

                          1. re: jmckee

                            Hahaha. Yeah. Frozen yogurt was last a trend in, what, 1976?

                            1. re: Jay F

                              You misunderstood my comment ok. I was referring to Greek frozen yogurt.

                              Natural health food stores were dispensing frozen yogurt on my way home from school, it's been around a longggggggg time. That was my point. Cupcakes are new? Ha!

                              1. re: HillJ

                                I didn't know whose comment it was. I was responding to jmckee, who didn't name names.

                                However, upon reading what I *think* is the post you say I misunderstood, you did lead with "If I had to call out a craze, it's frozen yogurt." {Punctuation added.)

                                A little bit later you said, with about a quarter-teaspoon of sarcasm, "About the same dire need as a cupcake."

                                Anyway, nothing to get upset about. I still think you're swell, both of you.

                                P.S. I was eating gelato in America in 1980.

                                1. re: Jay F

                                  I see. I was referring to the popularity. We know cupcakes aren't new (anymore than yogurt) but having an all cupcake or all yogurt store is fairly new (hence the OP)for my generation.

                                  Same thing is happening to gelato. Special shops that cater to one popular item when you can buy that item everywhere. I thought that was the point of the thread..that the cupcakes "time" is up...it's not like we won't be able to buy cupcakes anymore.

                                  If I dislike anything, it's having a small food opinion turned into some pysch 101 lesson. :0)

                                  1. re: HillJ

                                    Cupcake stores were new, at least in my lifetime, when they started appearing in the '00s.

                                    But frozen yogurt stores have been around forever, comparatively speaking. I remember going to one on 7th Avenue in the Village with my LA-born roommate, who told me they were everywhere in LA. This was in the 1970s, and I saw plenty of them in DC in the 80s and 90s, so frozen yogurt stores aren't new to me at all.

                                    And when I lived in Seattle, I had a gelato store in my apartment building (across Western Avenue from the Pike Place Market) in 1980. And there've been two where I live now for at least a decade.

                                    This isn't Psych 101. It's Food I Buy 201.

                                    1. re: Jay F

                                      That's interesting Jay and diff from my own exp., natch.

                                      My first frozen yogurt was dispensed by the neighborhood health food store. Vanilla only and it was fantastic; I'd stop after school. Then you could buy frozen pints and take them home or in the market in maybe 4 flavors by the time I was in college. I didn't come across a retail yogurt only shop/chain until maybe five years ago. Plenty of small business owners making small batch yogurts today tho.

                                      Bakeries provided all the cupcakes we bought. Cupcake only shops maybe 10 years ago and more options in major cities than suburban areas. And GF cupcakes maybe five years ago. I agree cupcakes are sold everywhere but I didn't find that to be the case for frozen yogurt for quite some time.

                                      As for gelato, Italian restaurants until the recent arrival of gelato only shops and even now I can't get great gelato in my area of NJ. NYC sure.

                                      jmckee made the snarl remarks, not you.

                        2. Too messy to eat. And sadly, forks are usually scarce around cupcakes.

                          1. I'd rather have a slice of cake. Or a whole cake.

                            1 Reply
                            1. re: youareabunny

                              So would I.

                              But where I live, you couldn't get a slice of cake. Or a whole cake. Not until the cupcake bakeries opened, and shamed other places into making real cake (i.e., not supermarket chemicake).

                              There was literally *one* bakery that made cake in my little three-neighborhood neighborhood here before the cupcakeries opened. If I wanted cake, I *had* to make my own. And AFAICR, it was the same where I lived in DC until the late '90s.