Back in 2013, the Wall Street Journal declared that the cupcake trend had peaked; cupcakes were no longer the fashionable pastry they were when New York’s Magnolia Bakery became a media darling at the turn of the century because its cupcakes were featured on the TV show “Sex and the City.” One food writer even observed a “cupcake backlash” among consumers who realized it was all too easy to make their own.
Those of us who loved cupcakes before they were chic continue to love them even if their status among food oracles has sunk. As for making our own, we know for sure we never will make ones as good as those turned out by The Cake Box of Ridgefield, Connecticut.
These are handsome cupcakes, expertly baked and artistically frosted, modest in size but large in flavor, ranging from simple “Very Vanilla” and “Life by Chocolate” to such daily specials as Wednesday’s “Almond Joy” (almond buttercream in a chocolate cupcake topped with toasted almonds and coconut), Friday’s “Elvis” (banana cake filled with milk chocolate ganache with peanut butter frosting), and Saturday’s “Peppermint Patty” (chocolate cake filled with mint buttercream). They are baked fresh every day, and they taste it: moist, buttery, made from ingredients of the highest quality.
In addition to cupcakes, the Cake Box makes wickedly good chocolate chip cookies, brownie bites, Italian macaroons, scones, muffins and cinnamon rolls. They also are known for elaborately decorated special-occasion cakes. While much business is take-out, you can sit down here in a comfy chair and enjoy pastries along with coffee or espresso.
Note that while there are a few gluten-free items available at the 1 Big Shop Lane location, proprietors Robert and Jordan also have a sister store, Swoon, completely devoted to gluten-free and nut-free pastries. It is located nearby in Ridgefield at 109 Danbury Road. www.swoonglutenfree.com. Also, there is now a second Cake Box in Westport, CT, at 10 Bay St. (203-557-0264)