This week I was invited to meet the Queen of Cupcakes herself – Candace Nelson, founder of the now-famous Sprinkles Cupcakes bakery and host of the Food Channel’s Cupcake Wars.
Know how you hear stories about people meeting celebrities they admire and they turn out to be… uhmm…. HUGELY LESS than what they expected? Candace was delightful, warm and genuine – the ultimate cupcake celebrity 🙂
Sprinkles Cupcakes was opened in 2005 in Beverly Hills and was the very first cupcake-only bakery anywhere. I certainly take for granted having a variety of local shops gourmet cupcake shops to choose from, but back then Candace and her husband Charles received more than a few odd looks (‘huh, so you keep the sheet cakes in the back then?’).
But it worked, it really really did. And thank goodness!!
They have since then opened 8 locations total (with DC and NYC coming within the next few weeks), but manage to keep the intimate ‘little mom and pop shop down the street’ feel by hiring super friendly employees and keeping their storefronts small and cozy.
The Sprinkles folks adore what they do and it shows – their ingredients are high end and classic, they skip the ‘fad’ combos and opt for simple flavors that take you back to childhood with a more sophisticated flair.
Best of all, they bake constantly throughout the day, as Candace feels that no matter how late you arrive you should be treated to something fresh and special. And you know, it is special – the cupcakes are showcased beautifully as you walk in, you get an energetic run through of the cupcakes de jour and a beautifully designed cupcake package to take home with you.
And all leftover cupcakes go to a local food bank, because they are AWESOME. Cupcake baking with heart. I <3 Sprinkles Cupcakes.