Every one of my visits to Richmond brings me to Pearl’s; it’s a ‘must do’ kind of place. On this trip I happened to be heading to a lengthy doctor’s appointment and was worried if I waited until later the selection of cupcakes would be less; so I made Pearl’s my first stop just ten minutes after the start of cupcake serving time. I’ve sampled many flavors of theirs, but there are plenty more on my ‘haven’t tried yet’ list. For some reason, I always seemed to miss one cupcake in particular on each visit, but thanks to the cupcake fairies...the Mexi Cali chocolate was in the display case that morning. My husband tends to favor the ordinary flavors and I am addicted to sampling the unique selections. This time around , the ‘never before tasted’ I chose were the Mexi Cali, the Cherry Pie, the vegan Chocolate Coffee Coconut and Minty Chocolate. I am no fan of mint and chocolate, but I thought I’d give it a shot-recommended by the young girl who boxed up my treats with a smile. Just prior to my doctor’s appointment, I hid the cupcakes in the trunk of my vehicle, and hoped the valet drivers had a poor sense of smell otherwise, my cupcakes may have been eaten; the aroma of chocolate permeated from my trunk into the passenger compartment. It was a tough drive home on an empty stomach; really wanting to sneak a bite, but I waited.
After a light dinner, it was time to cleanse the palate and sample my chosen batch of cupcakes. I do this after cupcake visits. I take a few bites of each, sampling the icing and cake separate, then all together. First up, the one I’d been dying to try for a very long time-the Mexi Cali Chocolate. This super chocolaty combo has heat that kicks in after a few bites and is spot on when it comes to the level of it. There’s just enough of the cayenne pepper to know it’s the magic ingredient, but not overpowering to ruin it. A clear winner! The Cherry Pie had an insane amount of cream cheese frosting on a vanilla cupcake with cherry pie filling. It was delicious, but I ended up scraping a lot of the icing off. For those who think vegan options taste blah, you are missing out on a really scrumptious cupcake. I am not a vegan, but couldn’t resist the Chocolate Coffee Coconut –three of my favorite cupcake ingredients in one. This was a perfect combo of flavors-moist, tasty and the best out of my selections this day. Onto the Minty Chocolate, which I saved for last and for good reason; I wasn’t sure I’d like it and didn’t want to ruin my taste buds before sampling the others. One bite of this mint flavored green icing with the bite of the devil’s food chocolate cupcake and I headed for the trashcan. Yep, it was disgusting; like Colgate dyed green and squirted on a chocolate cake. On the other hand, my husband loved it; but he’s a fan of mint and chocolate. I can at least say I tried it. There have been some that I didn’t think I’d enjoy, but I did...so you have to give each cupcake at least one taste test. Our everyday favorites-the Red Velvet and Carrot Cake never disappoint, both loaded with cream cheese frosting and moist cake. My husband’s remaining choices-the Top Hat, Plain Jane and Black & White are his favorites; to me they’re boring flavors, but overall still rockin’ cupcakes. Pearl’s is back on top this time around for us! We look forward to our