Baking Cupcakes: Little Gourmet Desserts that Dominate
Despite rumors about the decline of the nationwide cupcake craze, these tiny treats still reign supreme in the Valley
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CuteCakes owner Alyssa DeMarco agrees: “They’re truly the perfect little dessert. Also, it’s a personalized way to give a unique gift.” DeMarco, 21, is a full-time student at Marist College studying marketing and fashion, but has always had a passion for baking. When she noticed the increase in cupcake sales starting in New York City bakeries a few years ago, she wanted to jump on the bandwagon. “It seems like the trend is on the decline for major cities, but it’s on the rise for smaller cities, towns, and communities, such as those in the Hudson Valley,” she says. She discussed a business plan with family and friends last January, got started right away, and the business took off. “I now bake cupcakes for four locations, as well as cater to weddings, events, birthdays, and bachelorette parties,” she explains. “I recently launched my Web site, which generated more than 2,000 hits in less than 48 hours.”
DeMarco’s baking motto, “Simplicity is the most beautiful decoration,” allows the unique — and often decadent — flavors to speak for themselves. The Il Cappuccino is made of espresso cake topped with cappuccino frosting and garnished with an edible coffee bean; another item, made with banana pecan cake, is capped with banana caramel frosting, chopped pecans, and caramel drizzle. She also offers a line of cocktail cupcakes, including cosmopolitan, piña colada, and margarita flavors.