Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Cupcake Craze

When I first moved to Israel in November 2010, cupcake shops (aka my weakness and an American staple) were nowhere in sight. Especially not in Jerusalem. If I showed a bakery a picture for fun, the staff would say to me, "Oh yes, a muffin!! We have those." No, no, no. It's not a muffin. Not at all. For someone who had never encountered a cupcake before, there was little use in trying to explain to them what it is. They just didn't get it. Really, do these look like muffins to you?

Via Sprinkles.com website

Via Sprinkles.com website

Magnolia's Cupcakes via google.com

Magnolia's Cupcakes via google.com

However, over the last year, I have seen cupcakes popping up in strange places. First, it was at farmer's markets where the treats didn't sell well. No one knew what they were. Then, in Tel Aviv (of course in Tel Aviv, that's where you'll find anything remotely close to what you'll find in another country) I began seeing cupcake shops opening up in various places in the busy cafe-stricken center of town.

Dizengoff Street, Tel Aviv via google.com

So, now, I know exactly where to get my sugar fix if I'm in the mood. If you're heading to Tel Aviv, I'd suggest a trio of options for you to sample out:

I Love Cupcakes

Located at 114 Ben Yehuda Street, this American style cupcake place seems to be closely modeled after the wildly successful Sprinkles chain. Tasty, but you simply cannot compare it to Sprinkles. The ambiance and decor, however, will pull you inside as will the colorful array of cupcake options on the menu and in the window.

I Love Cupcakes via their website

I Love Cupcakes via their website

I Love Cupcakes via their website

Red Velvet

My personal favorite in the Tel Aviv scene, Red Velvet is at 9 Ibn Gvriol Street and seems to me be modeled after New York's Magnolia Bakery, replete with the black and white checkered floor and the neighborhood feel of the place. As you might guess by its namesake, the Red Velvet is the most delicious cupcake choice if you ask me. It's my bakery of choice if I find myself in the streets of Tel Aviv. Other concoctions will whet your palette including an enormous oreo style cookie sandwich with white frosting filling as well as other baked treats. It's the kind of place that just makes you smile when you walk in its doors.

Red Velvet, Tel Aviv via google.com

Red Velvet, Tel Aviv storefront via google.com

Red Velvet, Tel Aviv via google. com

Red Velvet, Tel Aviv via google.com

Red Velvet, Tel Aviv via google.com

Viola's Cupcakes

Last but not least is Viola's Cupcakes, which I have yet to sample out. Located at 154 Dizengoff (I don't know how I could have missed this on Tel Aviv's busiest shopping and cafe street), Viola's Cupcakes is smack dab in the center of town. I cannot comment on the taste of their little treats, but I will let the pictures do the talking. A mini cupcake will cost you 8 shekels and a regular sized cupcake will be 15 shekels. Of course, you can always box them up in multiples for a special price.

Viola's Cupcakes, Tel Aviv via their facebook page

Viola's Cupcakes, Tel Aviv via their facebook page

Viola's Cupcakes, Tel Aviv via google.com

Viola's Cupcakes, Tel Aviv via their facebook page

If you have any suggestions yourself of delicious places for sweets in Tel Aviv, feel free to comment. I'm always eager to try new places, especially ones that have been recommended. Be kind to yourself and go grab a sweet treat sometime this week!

3 comments:

  1. Yum!!! My weakness, too. Craving cupcakes does NOT necessarily mean you're pregnant, does it?

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  2. Oh wow! I'm giddy over this and need a cupcake STAT...San Diego has so many good places. Have you been to Cups in La Jolla?

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  3. Mom - I think you know me well enough to know I crave a good cupcake anytime, pregnant or not!!
    Devon - I really don't think I've tried Cups!!! We might just need to have our next get together there :) I'm missing out on all these yummy additions to the San Diego scene!

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