The Disney Food Blog is one of my prime sources for food goings-on at Disney. So when A.J. posted a Disney Cupcake Crawl Challenge, I was totally up for it. (below photo: courtesy of The Disney Food Blog.)
Disney generally tends to be a heightened version of reality, and their cupcakes are no exception – they are bigger, more elaborate, and crazier looking than the average cupcake. I knew I would need some help if I wanted to get through a cupcake crawl, so I enlisted the aid of Julie of The Little Kitchen, Jaclyn of Food Plus Words, and Jessica of The Novice Chef. Hubs and the tyke also came along.
The crawl involved 5 locations and 10 cupcakes, spanning across three theme parks and two resorts. We began our journey at the Boardwalk Bakery. They had three cupcakes available: oreo bon bon, orange cream, and s’mores.
We were informally judging the cupcakes on texture, taste, and presentation. All the cupcakes got high marks for presentation. The oreo cupcake had the a fantastic texture, and the orange cream had an incredible flavor. The s’mores cupcake was a little dry.
Next stop was Starring Rolls Cafe at the Hollywood Studios. They had four (!) cupcakes to try: chocolate peanut butter, butterfinger, marble, and red velvet cheesecake. Again, all the cupcakes looked fabulous. However, they were stored in a well-chilled cooler, and I think that affected their texture. If they had come to room temperature before eating, I’m sure they would’ve been moister.
The cream cheese frosting on the red velvet cupcake was amazing. The butterfinger topping on that cupcake tasted great, especially when combined with the cake. The dense filling of the chocolate peanut butter cupcake was a great combination of both flavors. The only disappointment was the marble cupcake. It was a layer of chocolate cake and a layer of vanilla cake, with hardly a swirl to combine them.
At this point, we were feeling the sugar, so we took a break from cupcakes and rode on Star Tours, and searched for a Star Wars collector’s set for Julie’s husband. We then headed to the next cupcake stop, the Kusafiri Coffee Shop and Bakery located in the Africa area of the Animal Kingdom.
Here were the most impressive looking cupcakes we had seen so far – a zebra cupcake, a white chocolate elephant cupcake, and a cotton top tamarin cupcake. We oohed and aahed over these cupcakes. However, underneath the fancy tops, the cakes were okay. The toasted coconut on the white elephant cupcake was the best part.
There were still two more stops, but by this point we had reached our heat threshold and sweetness breaking point. We tried a total of 10 cupcakes, which means we added two to the original challenge. We headed for our respective homes to cool off and drink lots of water.
Never one to leave a project unfinished, I followed up a few days later to check out the cupcakes we missed. The vanilla caramel cupcake at the Germany pavilion of Epcot was sorely disappointing. The cake was dry, and the buttercream was hard. I think I got one that was past its prime.
While on our cupcake crawl, we were tweeted by a fan about a must-try cupcake at the Contemporary resort. I headed there and found two fantastic looking cupcakes: the dos leches cupcake, and the Florida strawberry cupcake.
My favorite by far of all the cupcakes I’ve had (and by this point, that was 12) was the dos leches cake. It was a moist yellow cake, with a caramel filling, topped with a creamy frosting and chocolate shavings. The strawberry cupcake was similar, but with a strawberry filling and a strawberry frosting. The tyke especially liked this one.
This was a different s’mores cupcake than the one we tried at the Boardwalk Bakery. It consisted of a graham cracker flavored cake studded with chocolate bits, topped with a marshmallow frosting and capped off by a Hershey’s chocolate square. It was the perfect balance of the three flavors. Additionally, this cupcake was a little smaller than all the others, making it more manageable (i.e. realistic) to finish.
What a challenge! I can’t imagine anyone having the stamina to make it through all those cupcakes in one day. I’ve been inspired by all the flavors and toppings, but right now I need a break from cupcakes.