If you haven’t heard of Sprinkles Cupcakes you are either not into cupcakes, or never heard of Paris Hilton (and numerous other celebrities) proclaim their love for these little baked delights, or not following food trends… or dead*. Sprinkles Cupcakes is the Prada of cupcakes for the West Coast as Magnolia Bakery is for New York City. It is huge. The Los Angeles Times proclaimed that Sprinkles started the “haute cupcake craze.” And that is an understatement.
For the uninitiated, Sprinkles Cupcakes was founded by Candace Nelson after tasting the cupcakes at Magnolia Bakery. She thought she could create a better cupcake and after much taste testing, opened her Beverly Hills shop in 2005. Fast forward to 2011, Sprinkles Cupcakes has an almost cult-like following (and lots of imitators). Now with seven shops, La Jolla has joined the list and New York City and Washington DC are soon to follow.
Facebook fans of Sprinkles, like myself, received an invitation to check out their new store in La Jolla between 1-4 p.m. Funny thing is, people started lining up way before 1 p.m. If you arrived after 12:30, the line was already winding behind the building. Over 1,200 people rsvp’d for the preview, according to a public relations representative. Sprinkles Cupcakes is housed in the location that previously held Tutti-Frutti Frozen Yogurt.
It was like waiting in line for a concert — of cupcakes! Once inside, each invitee was treated to two cupcakes of their choice: black and white, carrot, chocolate coconut, chocolate marshmallow, cinnamon sugar, dark chocolate, lemon, milk chocolate, peanut butter chip, red velvet (their most popular flavor), vanilla or vanilla milk chocolate. The shop was a blur of moving hands and people deciding which flavors to take home.
Candace Nelson was there to meet fans and pose for photos. Candace was very engaging, answering questions and asking people their favorite flavors. I overheard one woman describe Candace to her boyfriend as “the Einstein of cupcakes.”
But the frenzy did not stop once outside. Several people posed outside with the Sprinkles truck holding their box of cupcakes. Now that’s dedication.
Sprinkles Cupcakes in La Jolla officially opens to the rest of the public on Thursday, January 13 and is located at 8855 Villa La Jolla Drive. Cupcakes are $3.25 each — a bit steep for cupcakes. I’ve never got over the initial shock of the price the first time I tried them in Los Angeles but it’s a small price to pay to taste a bit of a fad.