by Linda Clark - 63 Reviews - 9 List
What would a birthday be without diving face-first into frosting? A real party starts with a great cake--one that balances a spongy crumb with a drape of sweet icing and has tiers layered with silky smooth buttercream. Whether it's a ready-to-eat delight or a specially ordered bespoke dessert, a stellar birthday cake becomes the centerpiece of a celebration. Blow out the candles! Cut the cake, already!
(Photo: Courtesy of Finale)
Updated: October 30, 2009
Special occasion cakes are the name of the Yum Bunnies game. The process starts with a half-hour appointment to taste different flavor combos and select signature designs. One to consider: the Love Me Tender (inspired by Elvis Presley), which pairs banana cake with creamy peanut butter mousse. The final creation, however, is always up to you: mix and match your own preferences for cake and fillings and nail the design down to the last detail.
Finale has memorable birthday cakes covered. The desserterie doesn't do individual designs or special flavors, but you can order ahead from the bakery's wide selection of beautifully designed eight-inch cakes, including the Ultimate Chocolate--made with oodles of rich, buttery chocolate ganache. If a last-minute arrangement has you rushing to find a fabulous cake, stop in and take your chances with what's available in the pastry cases.
Sweet is known for its irresistible cupcakes, but the cute, retro-styled store also offers full-size custom-designed cakes for special order. Whatever format you choose, desserts can be made with customized frosting on your preferred cake base (like the spiced Organic Karat, made with organic carrots). Sweet makes a delicious vegan cupcake, too, and Pup Cakes--special doggie cupcakes--wow bow-wow parties.
The same baker has turned out cakes at Formaggio for more than 20 years. Whether it's coconut layer cake (coconut sponge with vanilla buttercream and chewy coconut flakes), mocha mousse cake (sophisticated, single-layer flourless mocha cake), or melt-in-the-mouth malt chocolate layer cake (malt-flavored cake with milk chocolate buttercream), these comforting cakes will give that special je ne sais quoi to your birthday.
As a green-certified bakery, Flour lets you have your eco-friendly cake and eat it too. The bakery does custom-baked birthday cakes to order, in all sorts of flavors. Our recommendation: Flour's signature Hazelnut-almond Dacquoise--hazelnut and almond meringues with coffee buttercream and dark ganache decorated with hazelnuts--is an outrageous way to usher in a new year.