Wednesday, 23 May 2012

Cupcakes by Charley - Leeds

Please note this establishment in Leeds has now closed, you can however still find them in Harrogate in The Montepellier Quarter. 

Cupcakes by Charley, the first time I saw this place I thought "Oh no not another person jumping on the cupcake bandwagon"... I don't mind a cupcake but I would prefer a hunk of cake instead, the copious amounts of buttercream you get on cupcakes oo is a little too much for me.

I'm not going to deny that just passing by and looking through their window I was impressed with the look and variety of the variety of cupcakes on offer. The Saturday previously I decided to wander down Queens arcade, as I was peering in to Aladdin's Cave's window the smell of freshly baked cupcakes was creeping towards me. I decided to once again look in the window, and also have a look at what drinks they had to offer. We were due to go to Little Tokyo for lunch this day so I didn't go in.

However... the next day when I found myself once again in Leeds City Centre on the Sunday. My friend and I were absolutely freezing from the wind and rain that day and so decided to seek shelter and warmth somewhere that could provide us with Hot Chocolate and cake.

At first we tried the new chocolate cafe just across the way from Waitrose, but finding it absolutely heaving we ventured down Queens Arcade.

There was only one other couple sat in having a drink and cupcake but there were a few people queueing to take away.

My friend decided against getting a cupcake and just got a luxury hot chocolate ( they had just been to the gym, he didn't want to reset their whole morning!)

I decided to go for a strawberries and cream cupcake (Strawberry Dream) with a luxury hot chocolate.

The cupcakes were really nice! You could tell they were freshly baked, they didn't have that waxy preservative taste that comes with cupcakes which have had their shelf life extended, they weren't dry as if they had been frozen and then defrosted the night before, they were very near to perfect. I couldn't however, finish off that mini mountain of buttercream.

The hot chocolate was luxurious - no have false advertising here! It was a splendid little pit stop during our frantic shopping and nicely warmed us up; energised us with sugar to keep us going for the rest of the afternoon.

The decoration inside is modern and simple. The chairs are bright pink, with pink flowers on the tables. It's very female orientated and may put men off entering in on their own. I know cake and cupcakes is predominately a female world but there are men bakers and men who enjoy cake just as much as women do. So my worry is that they may be missing out on trying these cupcakes as they are blinded by pink as they peer in.

The ladies that were working that day were very friendly, and when we enquired if they baked the cupcakes themselves they said yes and that they had a batch baking downstairs right at that very moment!

I would definitely return for either a take away or a quick sit down as there are plenty of other flavours I would love to try. See below for a snapshot of some of the other flavours which were available that day.

The cupcakes are reasonably priced at £1.95 each, and the hot chocolates were £2.20 about the same price as Starbucks.

Charley's Cupcakes
10 Queens Arcade