Cupcakes: The Day After

Last night's rainy weather didn't dampen the fun at the First Annual DC Cupcake Contest one bit! Those of you who missed it, I'm sorry to say, missed out on a sweet evening. In my excitement over the cupcake onslaught that was to come, I completely forgot to pack my camera (bad blogger!), but a few of the other judges were better prepared in that area and I'll link to their pictures as they're posted.

A note about judging a cupcake contest: Nothing could have prepared me for the sugar coma brought on by sampling nearly 30 different cupcakes in less than two hours! I love cupcakes, and even I was relieved when my fork sank into the last one. I was pretty sure I'd never want to see another cupcake, but you know what? I was wrong. I just don't want to see 30 cupcakes all lined up with my name on them again for a while.

On to the important stuff: Who won?

In the professional category, which was a very close competition, top honors went to Nostalgia, a soon-to-open Annapolis cupcakery. Owners Robert and Sharon White brought fine examples of their basic chocolate with white icing and yellow with chocolate icing cupcakes -- both were delicious. Their signature cupcake, though, rocked my cupcake-loving world: It was a chocolate cupcake with a mound of bittersweet frosting on top and just the right amount of bittersweet chocolate goo melting out of the center of the cake. It would totally be worth the drive from Alexandria to Annapolis just to get another one.

I happened to be standing right behind the Whites when we were getting our cars from the valet, and they were thoughtful enough to leave a big plate of cupcakes in the valet's office. That makes points with me, too: Nice goes a long way.

Nostalgia hasn't launched its website yet, but you can read all about the bakery and catch an interview with Sharon White at Danielle Buckley's Delleicious blog, which should be required reading for all cupcake lovers.

In the amateur category, the winner by a wide margin was Mollie Ohlhaut. Her signature cupcake was a very yummy chocolate cupcake with raspberry filling, topped with chocolate frosting laced with raspberry liqueur, and decorated with a fresh raspberry and a chocolate wafer. (That single fresh raspberry was the healthiest thing any of the judges ate all night!) Her other submissions were just as delicious. You can read more about Mollie and her cupcakes at www.molliecakes.com. It looks like she's opening a business, and we wish her every success!

A big thanks to the fabulous Washington Club for opening its doors to this event, to all the wonderful waitstaff who kept the event running smoothly, to the competitors for their delicious submissions, and of course to organizer Jenni Collins! Thanks, Jenni, for starting such a tasty new DC tradition.