I think that most would agree that being featured on a national cable network, on the premiere episode of a new series, and even the premiere clip of that episode is a pretty big deal, and you might say- a dream come true. Well, for Pastry Chef Sara Ross, owner of Kickass Cupcakes in Somerville and Wellesley, her dream came true. Last night the very first show of The Food Networks newest show "Kid in a Candy Store" aired, and they were doing a feature piece on Kickass Cupcakes to kick it off. Chef Ross hosted a party at the Alibi bar in the Liberty Hotel to celebrate it.
We gathered around 7:30 pm, and were immediately greeted with display after display of gorgeous looking mini-cupcakes. If you have never been to Alibi, or the Liberty hotel before, the lobby and most of the public spaces are contained in what used to be the Boston Jail facility. They maintained much of the original structure in the renovations, and Alibi is set up in sections, all divided with jail cell bars etc. It's schmaltzy, but a great piece for combination, as well as the "artwork" displayed on the walls of celebrity mug shots. What I really loved though was the beautiful contrast of the delicate, beautifully decorated cup cakes against the industrial bars.
As I actually have never indulged in a cupcake from Kickass, I was excited to try them, and since they were such a lovely mini size, I was able to try several of them! They are known for really experimenting with flavors and textures (read Cinnamon Chai Pecan Sticky-um yum!) but I tried to stick with the basics for the most part to really get into the flavors, and they were all just delicious. The vanilla with basic the basic butter cream was perfect, moist cake, delicious frosting, and in a great ratio. I've found that far too often cupcake stores (which shall remain nameless) over do the frosting and you end up with a mountain of frosting and not much cake, sometimes that's ok if the cake is bad, but then its just one big pile of bad cake. No good. But, I digress. The cake here was delicious and well flavored, accented perfectly by the sweet but not overpowering butter cream. I also tried the chocolate with chocolate icing, you know for comparison sake ;-). This was again delicious with great ratio of icing to cake, the same great moist cake and a wonderful chocolate flavor that didn't leave me needing a milk refresher, but pleasantly satisfied of any chocolate craving.
As delicious as the cupcakes were, and how wonderful the event began...trouble was brewing. As we neared the 8:00 pm hour we began to turn our attention to the TVs, none of which appeared to be tuned to The Food Network. And then, after moments of confusion of whether the satellites were down, or they just didn't subscribe to the correct channel, it was determined that we must leave Alibi and head across the street to Harvard Gardens who assured us that they did have the channel. Unfortunately, by the time that we got across the street, and settled into Harvard Gardens, the show was 10 minutes in, and we finally had to face the fact that we missed Kickass Cupcakes spot on the show. It was and increasingly sad moment, especially as I watched Chef Ross' face filled with disappointment as the closing credits ran. But to her credit, she made a quick phone call, learned that they would be playing her episode again at 3:00 am today, and so now it sits on my DVR waiting for me to watch it.
I have to give strong kudos to Chef Ross for maintaining an aura of complete professionalism in what I can only imagine to be a crushing moment. I also have to give her cupcakes a serious nod- I'm wishing I had grabbed a couple to save for today...delicious!!!
Did anyone catch the live show? How fantastic was it? I heard that she featured a deep fried cupcake filled with ice cream!