A warm thank you to this year's participants at the New Times' cupcake battle at Friday night's Las Olas Wine & Food Festival, during which seven bakers whipped up hundreds of cupcakes for an enthusiastic crowd.
Three judges sampled the bakers' choice cupcakes to determine Best Decorated and Best Tasting. The Fan Favorite tallies were just under way when the skies opened to the downpour that pummeled the night's event. Despite the weather, a crowd remained, encouraged by restaurants that fed a damp crowd.
Each bakery offered a cupcake to characterize its style and flavor.
Five Sisters Bakery created a Russian raisin bread cake with cream-cheese frosting, a healthier-than-average ditty, with no sugar or preservatives, flavored with prosecco.
Just Cupcakes from Yesenia Fernandez featured a rich, moist rum chocolate cake with coconut cream frosting, while Raine Gottess' cakes were showier, an elaborate chocolate concoction with butter pecan and cream-cheese frosting and crushed Samoa Girl Scout cookies to boot.
I was partial to a mini-creamsicle cake from Elite Cake Creations, displayed in a charming little cart with dozens of flavors and toppings. Sweeter Days offered a salty caramel vanilla cake infused with homemade caramel and decorated with a hive of salty, delicious butter cream.
Agape Cakes' Sherry Bell and company baked a delicious red-velvet and cream-cheese cake, while Cupcakes by Erica offered a memorable, rich Guinness cupcake for the boozehounds among us.
Judges went for Sweeter Days as the winner of Best Decorated, while Just Cupcakes earned Best Tasting for its rum chocolate and coconut-cream frosting.
New Times nixed The Fan Favorite on account of the rain. Perhaps you'd like to weigh in in the comments?
Thank you again to all participants who worked so hard for this event.