Saturday, October 13, 2007

Pumpkin Arrives at Teacake

It's October, so of course we're going to see a lot of pumpkin in the stores for Halloween and pumpkin pies next month. I actually love pumpkin and I was excited when I saw special pumpkin-flavored goodies at the Teacake Bake Shop at the Bay Street Shopping Mall in Emeryville.
Teacake does a lot of specialty flavors for their cupcakes (each sold on specific days of the weeks; vanilla and chocolate sold every day) but right now they're doing a special pumpkin cupcake everyday ($3). I bought one to take home recently and thought it was moist and tasty, and not super sweet. It didn't necessarily look as cute as the other cupcakes (kind of plain looking) but it satisfied my hunger for pumpkin.
They also sell a variety of cookies and they have a special pumpkin-flavor cookie ($2), which I also tried. This wasn't as satisfying as the cupcake. When I bought my cookie in the afternoon, it was soft and almost stale. Not sure if it was meant to be soft, because a lot of their cookies are on the soft side. I felt it would have been better a bit more crisp. I did like the cinnamon icing on top, though.
Since I've never done a full profile of this quaint bake shop, here's a mini tour of Teacake Bake Shop:
Some of you may look at Teacake and think, "Oh, this is too precious." And you're right. But I'm a sucker for well-packaged stores. And Teacake is designed well, from all its pink goodness outside to the cookies and cupcakes sold inside.

When you walk inside, you see it's a celebration of the cakes with all the ornamental cake stands in the window. Of course, the cakes they celebrate are all mini, which is good for me because I won't feel guilty buying one.

Here's the front counter that you see as you walk in and that's where you have a selection of Teacake's cookies and things like mini brownies.

The Teacake cookies are hit and miss (like the pumpkin cookie I talked about earlier). But one cookie I do like is the Snickerdoodle (on the right), which is this big, soft, chewy cookie. It's very comforting to me.
To the right as you walk in is this shelf of precious packaged products. Like I said, the owners really know how to brand their products, which means they make very classy-looking gifts.

They display the cupcakes at the window and the day I went (Thursday night) the cupcake of the day was Pomegranate. I would have tried one because I love pomegranates, but I was already filling myself with pumpkin. I wish they mix their flavors every week, because it's not like I can always go to Teacake on Thursday just to try the pomegranate. When this store first open, they had a variety of flavors every day but I guess that was too much. But now with the Flavor of the Day plan, you don't get to try the variety of flavors unless you go to Teacake every day of the week. I like cupcakes, but that's a bit too much for me.

As you're walking outside, you can see the workers inside making cupcakes. They're mostly decorating it, but I guess if you go early enough you'll see them baking. Teacake uses high-end, natural ingredients and bake their cupcakes in small batches. While I don't think all their flavors are that successful, it is still a fun place to explore after a movie or a day of shopping at Bay Street.


Anonymous said...

Cool review (it's making me drool) Chef Ben! Will forward to my cupcake-loving son who works in Emeryville, and I'll tell him to tell them you sent him :-)

nilla cookie said...

Just stumbled across your site and these cupcakes look AMAZING! Next time I make a stop at IKEA, I'll be sure to look this shop up in Emeryville - YUM!