Sugar rush.

Posted on October 14, 2011


My sister and I share a love of good food, wine and dessert. Despite our different temperaments, there is no meal which goes without food critique and praise. Growing up, most of our family discussions involved around food. Too hot, too salty, just enough sweetness, more sauce, these are terms which are as familiar to me as breathing. It was always in my nature to talk about food, I guess it evolved from a family of “picky” eaters. Without discussing our unhealthy obsession of Cupcake Central with one another, we both secretly began secretly scoffing these micro desserts between classes. Cupcake Central lives up to it’s name, a place that serves a plethora of cupcakes. Naturally, a day spent together studying came with a box of these sweet treats. Twenty four eye-dropping mini cupcakes iced to perfection. Flavours vary daily, from traditional to the obscure: Chocolate, peanut butter and jam, salted caramel or green tea and red bean.

Cupcake Central is a prized gem in Hawthorn, it preys on hungry commuters struggling to catch their trains at Glenferrie Station. Allured by their bright pastel colours, armomatics and great coffee, Cupcake Central is a success. The cafe opened in 2010 by Sheryl Thai, an ex IT consultant and avid home cupcake baker. It began as an on-line business until supply couldn’t meet demand. Sheryl’s humble beginnings, her desire to fufill a dream, is the basis of their logo: Hatch that dream. They have recently opened their second cafe in Melbourne Central.

Top Row L-R: salted caramel, black velvet, vanilla, green tea and red bean. Second Row L-R: Cookies and cream, red velvet, raspberry and white chocolate, citrus. Third Row L-R: devil's chocolate, jam and cream, mandarin and camomile, chocolate milkshake.

Top Row L-R: salted caramel, black velvet, vanilla, green tea and red bean. Second Row L-R: Cookies and cream, red velvet, raspberry and white chocolate, citrus. Third Row L-R: devil

Armed with plenty of sugar amo, we failed miserably at our study, but succeeded at polishing a box off in an hour. I would love to discuss each individually, but will refrain from boring you and will only go into details about the best and the worst. I have tried the salted caramel flavour many times before, it has been a reoccurring guilty pleasure, this time however my sister and I were divided. Lashes of salted cream are dolloped on a moist cupcake, garnished with pink Murray river sea salt. Was there too little salt or was it that the caramel was not strong enough. Either way, we were left on polar sides, I enjoyed it, whilst she was left slightly dissapointed.

I could just about live off the peanut butter and jam cupcake, this completly brought back memories from childhood, slathering pieces of white bread with inch high dollops of berry jam and smooth peanut butter. I have tried far too many failed peanut butter and jam cupcakes, this was by far the most outstanding. Other notable flavours are the Citrus and the Raspberry & white chocolate. The citrus has the perfect amount of zest, whilst the raspberry cupcake had an incredibly fresh flavour and worked well paired with the subtle nature of white chocolate. Although I personally am not a fan of green tea cake, the flavours of redbean and green tea was spot on. I loved the secret dollop of cream cheese and redbean in the centre of the cupcake.

All of the cupcakes are very good, however many are just OK, not outstanding, not bad either. The devils chocolate reminded me of a Betty Crocker at home mix, bland and too light handed with chocolate. They should definately reconsider the icing on the mandarin and camomile, which needed a creamed topping but instead had a boring glaze. The mandarin flavour was delicate and fruity, but the icing and appearance was a let-down.At $2.50 a pop, they are well worth the money and the micro options allow you the freedom to try before you buy. They advertise a calender of daily flavours, so there is no excuse to get caught out when a craving hits. A great haven to escape and a great gift to make someone’s day. Be warned, due to their size and taste, they can be very addictive…..

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