Friday, August 26, 2011
Nostalgic Treats at Auntie Em's Kitchen
Mile-high cream cheese frosted cupcakes and crispy wafer thin cookies, Auntie Em's Kitchen bakes the treats we remember from childhood, all dressed up. Being an active Food Network viewer, I first heard of Auntie Em's and their red velvet cupcakes a couple years back when they competed on an episode of Throwdown with Bobby Flay. I planned to check the restaurant out, but for some reason never made it. A few weeks ago I saw them featured on an episode of Sugar High with Duff Goldman, this time starring their chocolate chip cookie, and knew now I really had to stop by.
Immediately after stepping inside, you feel like you've entered your grandmother's kitchen. Big dishes of peach crisp, pineapple upside-down cake, stacks of oversized cookies, and jumbo cupcakes are just some of their classic American desserts with a modern twist. Along with their famous red velvet cupcakes and chocolate chip cookies, I bought a peanut butter cookie, carrot cake cupcake, and mini lemon-blueberry cupcake.
Let's start with their cupcakes. All three came LOADED with super sweet cream cheese frosting. Other than making the cupcakes look cute, I don't think all of that frosting was necessary. The creamy sweetness really overpowered the cakes, especially the mini lemon blueberry, which was about equal parts frosting and cake.
The red velvet was my favorite, and I totally understand why people rave about it. They definitely hit the mark with the moist, sweet, subtle cocoa flavored cake and bright red hue. The frosting would have been a better compliment to the red velvet if it weren't so sweet, and had more of a cream cheese tang.
The carrot cake was moist, chewy and filled with raisins and walnuts. I'm not a huge carrot cake person, and when I do eat it like it to be less chunky, so I'm not the best judge for this cupcake. However, my family did enjoy it.
The lemon blueberry was also moist, but I would have liked it better if it were slightly more tart and less sweet.
The chocolate chip cookie was paper thin, buttery, and a little chewy with big chunks of chocolate inside. I've never had a chocolate chip cookie like this before, and it was a nice change of pace. Having said that, after trying Auntie Em's version I found I prefer my cookies fatter with moist insides, chewy outsides, and more chocolate chips throughout. Their peanut butter cookie wasn't too sweet which was nice, but it was kind of dry.
Overall, the cafe's decor and vibe were very hip and cute and their red velvet is worth coming for, I'd just take off a little frosting before digging in. I've also heard great things about their non-baked-good food and will definitely have to come for breakfast or lunch sometime soon.
Auntie Em's Kitchen: 4616 Eagle Rock Blvd. Los Angeles, CA 90041