"Recession fuels cupcake wars"

Yes, it's another story about the impact of the recession and the current economic climate on cupcakes and cupcake bakeries. It's good, news, though, for the Washington, DC area, according to Lindsay Robbins at The Gazette, who writes about Georgetown Cupcake, The Blushing Bakeshop and custom cupcake company Rhonda's Cupcakery, which scored a whole separate writeup yesterday.

Cupcake businesses are doing better than most bakeries during the recession because smaller treats tend to sell better during hard times, said Paul Sapienza, vice president of operations for Retail Bakers of America in McLean, Va.

"People like to award themselves with little treats that don't cost much," Sapienza said.

Having baked custom cakes for friends and family, Waller had long been in search of the perfect cupcake in the Washington region. After years of "disappointment" from chains that favored mass production over "quality," Waller said she finally decided she could do better. Allying with a friend and a fellow Rhonda, Rhonda Pope, Waller began selling her own brand.

The story goes on:

But competition in Bethesda is growing stiff with the arrival of Georgetown Cupcake, which sells thousands of cupcakes each day and employs more than 600 part-time workers at its current location, LaMontagne said.

The renewed interest in cupcakes has brought in many customers who order cupcakes in lieu of traditional wedding cakes, she said.

Not too far from Georgetown Cupcake's proposed site in downtown Bethesda, Leslie Goldman-Poyourow is using the cupcake allure to supplement her creative cake shop, Cakes by Leslie. She said customers are often coming in to sample the miniature treats and then buying party cakes, too.

"I think that people are so used to eating very low-quality food in general, and around here, there's not that many great bakeries. Some of these new places actually have a great taste, but they have to keep the quality up," she said.

Goldman-Poyourow, who has owned her cake shop for 14 years and just moved it from Gaithersburg in October, said the cupcake market is becoming oversaturated, with many people "hyper-focused" on them. She suspects the trend may die down soon, with Maryland on the tail end of the craze.


I see the cupcake market is becoming oversaturated with Rhondas too! Shout out to Momdukes! :)