Monday, July 26, 2010

Things just got a little sweeter here in Chicago today. West coast cupcake mecca Sprinkles is opening its first Chicago store a few blocks from my apartment this afternoon. Being a five-star cupcake connoisseur, you know I will hit up this bakery on my way home this week. Today may be a bit crowded for my liking. It’s like those amateurs that go shopping on black Friday.

The Mr. and I (who are celebrating our 1-month anniversary! Yeah!), knocked one restaurant off our Chicago bucket list this weekend – Orange. Known as a contemporary brunch eatery, orange has a plethora of creative dishes. While the Mr. went for green eggs and ham (eggs with pesto), I immediately said “I do” to the pancake flight of the week – cupcakes! I sampled four different silver-dollar treats that included strawberry orange, vanilla bean, blueberry poppy seed and double chocolate. A stop at Orange wasn’t complete without trying their famous frushi – fruit sushi. It was refreshing, but I’m still not sure what I thought about the rice/banana and rice/strawberry/coconut combos.

Back in June, I was walking home from work while I saw a lot of commotion in a triangle near my apartment. There were camera crews, crowds of people and…the Flirty Cupcakes truck. I immediately darted to experience my first treat from this roving vehicle that has been hitting the streets of Chicago since spring. The driver told us folks in line that the crowds were for the Stanley Cup inside one of the restaurants, but I wasn’t the least bit excited to see the cup in Chicago. After all, my team had to give it up! Regardless, I enjoyed my first Flirty Cupcake and I must say – they have some of the best icing. How do you know where the truck is? You follow it on Twitter! Not to be outdone by its competitors, More Cupcakes in Chicago will also have a truck on the streets soon too.

Hands down, my favorite cupcakes in Chicago are still Swirlz. Their cake to icing ratio is amazing and I’ve never had a flavor that I didn’t enjoy. If you are visiting the Windy City, some other popular joints include Sugar Bliss (good downtown location near the big Macy's), Sweet Mandy B’s and Southport Grocery.