Name: Allison Robicelli
Job: Wife/Chef/Mother/Blogger/Tweeter/PR Director/Professional Neurotic
Previous Experience: Pastry chef, Line cook, Executive Chef-consultant, caterer of fancy dinners for people who make more money in a single day than I will ever make in my entire life.
Strengths: Boundless creativity; R&D queen; seeing endless possibility in everything; horrific ADD
Weaknesses: ADD; legally forbidden to come within 50 feet of any member of Menudo, thus hindering our efforts to dominate the Menudo-cupcake demographic
Name: Matt Robicelli
Job: Husband/Father/Chef/Receptionist/Client Liason/Quickbooks Slave
Previous Experience: Former FDNY Paramedic, Graduated with honors from FCI, Boulanger at Lutece, City Bakery, Pastry Chef at Water Club, Balducci’s
Strengths: Mastery of French techniques; getting things off high shelves; knowing that when his wife disappears from the kitchen for too long, she probably went into the walk-in and forgot why she was there, so she’s just standing there because she doesn’t want to come back empty handed, and he should go in and remind her what she went in for so she doesn’t freeze to death
Weaknesses: None, because his wife is the one writing this, and she thinks he’s perfect. Except for leaving his dirty clothes all over the floor. Hamper is five feet from the bed, Matt.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Where is your store located?
Our center of operations is at 9009 5th Avenue in Bay Ridge, Brooklyn. This is where we do all our baking, and have a nice little retail counter that serves Stumptown Coffee to boot. If you’ve ever hoping to meet one of us, to have your book signed, or to taste one of the many, MANY recipes we’re constantly prototyping, this is the place to go. It’s also where you need to go if you want to pick up a full-sized cake or pie or something.
Primarily, we’re a wholesale operation, meaning you can find our goods in various places around NYC and Long Island. Check locations for a list of places we distribute to. If you’re looking for a particular item, call them directly, as each store orders differently — the only place you’ll find a full selection of our products is at our Bay Ridge commissary.
What are your hours?
Monday-Wednesday: Appointment only (meaning you can pick up a cake or pie if you’ve ordered one, you can schedule a meeting or consult with us, you can place an order for delivery, but the retail counter at our shop is closed)
What is “the rotation”?
Since we have over 350 flavors and counting, it would be completely impossible for us to offer all of them every day. Also, we work with a lot of seasonal ingredients that are only at their peak a few weeks a year, and want to make sure we get a shot to showcase the best stuff on Earth when it rolls around. That’s why we rotate our flavors in and out during the year, offering 8 flavors each week (10 if you count vanilla and chocolate sea salt). We’ll occasionally have off-rotation on the weekends at our commissary shop. If you’d like to see a particular flavor come up, pay attention to our Facebook page, where we will ask for requests whenever we’re making the schedule.
Can I order cupcakes that are outside of that week’s rotation?
Yes. There is a one dozen minimum for most flavors, and note that based on seasonal availability all flavors may not be available when you’d like them to be. Certain labor intensive cupcakes require a two dozen minimum order. If we cannot accommodate your flavor choice, we’ll be happy to work with you to figure out something appropriate.
Where can I buy the Chicken n’Waffles cupcake?
The C&W cupcake, like most of our “very special cupcakes”, is only released a few times every year for special events- you need to pounce when it happens or you’re out of luck. You’ll know when it’s being released as we’ll post about it a few days ahead of time on Facebook and Twitter, and this here Tumblog the day before. In fact, this is how we post the menus for many of the special events we do, almost all with unique limited edition flavors. These flavors will also occasionally be released to Queen City Cupcakes in Patchogue, since we know it’s a far drive for our Long Island fans and it’s really not fair to let NYC have all the fun.
If you can’t wait for one of the time we’re releasing it, you can place a private order, but note there’s a 2 dozen minimum to order. Our “very special cupcakes” are labeled that for a reason- they’re very labor intensive to make, which is why we need to stick to that minimum and unfortunately cannot make exceptions. Note that we drop the minimum in January for Football Playoff Weekends- then after the Super Bowl it goes back up. Plan accordingly.
Do you do weddings/bar mitzvahs/baby showers/etc?
As a matter of fact we do, and we’re already booking up quickly for 2014! Click here for more info, and and we’ll be happy to work with you on planning your special day.
Note: as we are a wholesale company whose wares are readily available in stores, we DO NOT provide tastings for planning weddings and events.
What is your pricing?
Our cupcakes range from $3.25 to $5 a piece, with the majority costing $3.25. We are unable to list exact prices on our site due to price fluctuations of seasonal items and certain inventory. For questions regarding specific flavors, please email us at email@example.com
Do you do mini cupcakes?
We can do minis for events with a 72 piece (6 dozen) minimum. Also, our flavor selection is limited for minis, as we designed most of them to translate to regular size - meaning cupcakes that are soaked or filled can not be made miniature sized
Can you dye my cupcakes _______ color?
As a rule, we do not use any artificial dyes, colorings or chemicals in any of our baked goods. We would never dye a piece of chicken green to match a dress, or serve hot pink cheese because it’s someones favorite color. In fact, even those examples are kinda gross. So we don’t see how dying a cake an unnatural color makes any sense. Maybe it’s food snobbishness, but we just see it as silly.
We CAN, however, work with you on cupcake toppers, towers, and other cake decorating accessories. Just not colors.
Do you make red velvet cupcakes?
No. And it’s not going to happen.
Will you donate cupcakes to my charity event/fundraiser/etc?
Due to the overwhelming number of requests we get every year seeking donations, we have set a strict budget for charity donations each year (in 2011, we donated over $12k in free cupcakes, brownies, and time to various charities. In 2012 it was over $20k, and in 2013 it was over $35k). We wish we could say yes to everything- but we receive well over 100 donation requests ever year, and cannot possibly afford to fulfill them all.
Our donation budget for 2014 has been over 80% claimed by April. Please submit any charity requests as soon as you possibly can, and feel free to submit for 2015. We will begin making decisions on 2015 donations on January 1st.
We utilize our donation budget only to accommodate worthy charities. We cannot offer complimentary goods for press events, private parties, for-profit events or any other event in exchange for “exposure”. We will, however, consider bartering baked goods for services when applicable.
What is the optimal temperature for serving your cupcakes?
Though we suggest storing them in the refrigerator prior to service to protect the delicate buttercream, our cupcakes should be eaten at room temperature for maximum enjoyment. Allow them to sit until the buttercream just gets slightly soft, about 5 minutes. Alternately, you can microwave for 10-15 seconds.
How long does your stuff last for?
Our cupcakes and whoopie pies last for four days refrigerated, provided they are stored properly in an airtight container in the refrigerator. Optimally, if you’re going to eat/serve them more than two days after we bake them, we suggest storing them in the freezer. They hold perfectly in the freezer for 4-6 weeks (in that airtight container, of course).
Brownies last a tad longer as they’re nearly flourless. Room temp, give them 2-3 days (depending on the temp of your room), refrigerated a week, frozen 6 months (and tip- when you eat a frozen brownie, it actually feels like you’re eating MORE brownie than you actually are. This has never stopped me from eating extra brownies though as I have limited self control).
I went to one of your locations and they were serving cupcakes that weren’t in the current rotation. Were they trying to sell me old cupcakes?
Yes and no. Many of our locations have professional grade sub-zero freezers, and if our cupcakes are frozen and stored properly, there’s almost no way to tell it apart from a cupcake that was baked yesterday. Some locations will stock up on particular flavors when they are released in order to offer them for longer stretches of time than the few days they are in rotation.
I had a cupcake from one of your retail locations that seemed “less-than-perfect”. What do I do?
Unfortunately, this happens occasionally, and we hate it when it does. The downside to being a wholesaler is that once those cupcakes leave our kitchen, we have absolutely no control over them, how they’re stored, served, etc. We’ve chosen our retail partners very carefully based on their commitment to quality and have instructed them in the proper ways of cupcake storage, but remember we are all human and even the best of us sometimes make mistakes.
If you at any point receive a subpar cupcake from one of our retail partners, bring it up to the management of that location immediately. There is very little that we can do from our end about the problem, and it needs to be handled by the store you visited. If the problem at that location persists, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org, and we will be happy to look into it further.
My favorite flavor has been out of the rotation for a while. How do I make it come back?
When are you guys going to be on “Cupcake Wars”?
We’re not doing Cupcake Wars- they wouldn’t allow us to compete as a team, and we’re equal partners in marriage, parenting, AND business.
We’ve been on Chopped, Sweet Genius, Cooking Channel’s UNIQUE SWEETS, The Gayle King Show, Good Afternoon America, Food Curated, The Today Show, and have more super-secret things we can’t talk about coming to the television, but Cupcake Wars absolutely will not be one of them.
And if you REALLY need a reality fix of us, you can always tune into our wildly popular “Let’s Bake The Whole Thing Off”, the Internet’s Number Six Food-Based MS Paint Illustrated New York Situated Comic Strip Reality Show!