High-Flying Gourmet Cupcakes: Bust Period Boom?

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In another installment of my “Someone Needs to Get the Depression Memo” news, it’s cupcakes this time. Apparently, cupcakeries have been a boom period trend. The New York Times chimes in on the mania.

There is no Cupcake Manufacturers Association keeping count, but anecdotal evidence indicates that stand-alone cupcake shops have been spreading not just in the acknowledged cupcake meccas of New York and Los Angeles but also in Boston, Denver, Austin, Tex., and lots of smaller places. Nationwide, cupcake sales, according to the market research firm, Mintel, are projected to rise another 20 percent over the next five years at a time when other baked goods are expected to grow in the single digits.

After reading the following excerpt, I smell the stench of someone who hasn’t read the news in two years and who still thinks that Lehman Brothers and General Motors are on top of the world.

“Cupcake stores are taking the place of ice cream stores,” said Adam Borden, whose Baltimore-based venture capital firm, Bradmer Foods, specializes in food-focused enterprises. “Cupcakes aren’t seasonal like ice cream, and they appeal to people who want the authentic experience. They have an allure based on nostalgia.”

I admit to living in a part of America where after-work $1 draft beers are still the cat’s ass, not $20 cupcakes with chocolate sprinkles from France dipped in diamond dust. The Washington Post calls Sprinkles Cupcakes of Beverly Hills “the progenitor of the haute cupcake craze.” One lady who opened a snooty cupcake shop in Denver says “I still live in my brother’s basement.” Thanks to Skip Oliva for the story tip.

4:04 pm on December 5, 2009