The combination of sweet icing and fluffy sponge in an irresistibly cute package is our tea-time treat of choice. Delve into our delectable guide to London's best cupcake shops and cafés.
Bea’s of Bloomsbury is a mini-chain of cafés, with branches in Watling Street near St Paul's and Cowcross Street in Farringdon. But this original in Bloomsbury is the best, not least because it’s the source of all those spectacular gateaux and special occasion cakes – the busy, and sometimes noisy, kitchen and bakery occupies the rear half of the long and narrow space. Choose your seat in the long corridor facing the counter carefully, as the tables nearest the front bear the brunt of the constant bustle of takeaway customers; further back the room’s only slightly cosier.Read more
The Soho branch of this successful mini-chain is a busy spot; there are also branches in Notting Hill, South Ken, Spitalfields and Islington. Most customers come here for the colourful frosted cupcakes, which are displayed in long glass cabinets, alongside whoopee pies, tiered American cakes and varieties of brownies. Raspberry cheesecake brownie has to be the most indulgent version – a dense chocolate brownie base topped with a baked cream cheese layer and finished off with whipped raspberry cream – delicious.Read more
Cupcakes have been popping up all over since Carrie and the girls Manolo-ed their way into Magnolia Bakery, NYC. For a few years, and in ever-growing numbers, Londoners don’t seem to be able to get enough of these little bites of nostalgia. The proprietor of Violet Cakes, Claire Ptak, worked for three years as a pastry cook for Alice Waters at Chez Panisse, the restaurant largely credited as the most influential in the Californian gastronomy movement.Read more