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Sweet Tooth Cupcakery

Felicity Clarke loves a sugar rush in clever caff based on skill with a whisk

Published on November 24th 2008.


Sweet Tooth Cupcakery

The traditional fairy cake is a simple little sponge beloved of kids' cookbook writers and oft vandalised with coloured icing and edible ball bearings. The introduction of buttercream and 'wings' cunningly fashioned from scooped out sponge creates the slightly more exciting butterfly cake. Both are regulars at children's parties and church fairs but however tasty (and childhood trials prove this isn't a given), they're both thoroughly amateur with a clumsy aesthetic.

But then there are knitted jumpers with uneven arms and and there are Chanel couture sweaters. Sweet Tooth Cupcakery in Chorlton is a cute cafe-shop serving at theChanel end of the individual sponge cake spectrum. It's not in the most obvious location, tucked up Oswald Road opposite a primary school (and no doubt tapping into the yummy mummy market as a result), but this little cafe has been creating a stir sinced it opened in July with its range of teas, coffees, milkshakes and most importantly, cupcakes.

Now these are seriously stylish cakes. On entering the small cafe space you're faced with a counter filled with perfectly ordered ranks of characterful cupcakes priced at £1.50 each. It's a whipped-up feast for the eyes with glitter, meringue, Oreos and icing all present in an all-singing, all-dancing chorus of cake.

And they actually are all-singing and all-dancing. Kind of. Each cupcake has a celebrity identity matched to their individual flavours and look. Starring in the counter on my visit were a curious mix of real and fictional characters, Doris Day, Kylie, Liberace, Johnny Cash, Barbara Cartland and Scarlett O'Hara, all incarnated in cupcake form. Doris has a simple lemon topping with meringue sprinkles, Kylie is a disco dolly mix of raspberry, vanilla and glitter while Johnny Cash is an intense black and white Oreo mash up.

The proprietor Lorna Royle has a passion for vintage Americana and was initially inspired by the cupcakerys she visited in Vancouver and New York. She believes the personalities and good looks of the cakes are a big part of their appeal. “It's fun really and a bit camp. The idea is that they're an individual treat and so the presentation has got to be perfect because that's what captures people's imagination.”

This is all very well, but Marie Antoinette allowed the masses to eat cake, not just look at it so what about the taste? In the interests of research I bought a selection and sampled with friends over a big pot of tea. It was an indulgent banquet of soft fresh sponges lavishly topped with whirls of fancy buttercream that induced more than a few groans of food pleasure. Favourites varied but Kylie (raspberry sponge and vanilla topping), Chaka Khan (coconut sponge and chocolate cream topping) and the Johnny Cash Oreo mash up all performed particularly well.

They're not an every day kind of cake though, for obvious waistband reasons but also because Sweet Tooth Cupcakery is only open Thursday to Saturday. Madness (or laziness), you might think, but the rather charming philosophy is that these little bundles of cake joy are a special treat, something for the weekend as it were.

Let's hope that as a business model this works or that they buckle to a demand for week-long opening, because high cupcake fashion is a fabulously accessible kind of couture.

Sweet Tooth Cupcakery
9a Oswald Road
Chorlton-cum-Hardy
Manchester
M21 9LP

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47 comments so far, continue the conversation, write a comment.

AnonymousNovember 24th 2008.

"£1.50 a pop" The idea of a shop is to sell your product at more than they cost, that way you make a profit and can open the next day! I know a pair of Nike made in Vietnam don't cost £100 to make so therefore I won't buy any more !

pinksaltNovember 24th 2008.

Lovely shop, great presentation, hip crowd but sadly the cupcakes are ok, not great.

FranklinNovember 24th 2008.

I heartily concur, a superb gem of a shop in the otherwise sterile tedium of convention, I got kids all over town !!

AnonymousNovember 24th 2008.

I discovered this place in summer and was really excited about it, the shop is gorgeous, the staff were really friendly and the presentation is lovely, but I was really dissapointed with the cupcakes. They were full of air and the icing was watery, they tasted great but the texture was just like packet mix for cakes you get from the supermarket which for £1.50 each is pretty extortianate. I can knock up much more substantial cakes at home! Sorry :/

shiveringgoatNovember 24th 2008.

If anyone has been to Magnolia in Greenwich Village this is a benchmark for cupcakes. I have been to this place in Chorlton and agree service is aloof and cupcakes average. Decor is so 1999 Hoxton too yawn yawn. Cupcakes are all named after famous Hollywood stars, they were not amused when i asked for a 'Charles Manson'.

FoodDeeNovember 24th 2008.

If you want really great, hand-made cakes in Chorlton and lovely coffee, you should try North Star Delicatessen on the corner of Wilbraham/Buckingham Rd. Delicious!!!!

clichedchorltonmumNovember 24th 2008.

sadly have to agree that the cakes here are not all that. Far too much buttercream icing and average bases. They do look perdy though. For an altogether better cake experience I would have to recommend the new (? don't get out of M21 much so not sure how new) Folk, ex Burton Road Deli over in West Dids. Now those are truly fab fab fab cakes :)

ChorltonbutskintNovember 24th 2008.

Cup cakes at £1.50 a pop? I went in there for a treat, bought two cakes and nearly fell on the floor when they told me how much they were. My Dad was a baker and I know how much it costs to produce cup cakes... Not. A. Lot.

ZabzyNovember 24th 2008.

You gotta love Chorlton, its got it all

AnonymousNovember 24th 2008.

I honestly think the cakes are fab, coffee and teas are also top level, packet cake mix my a**e

AnonymousNovember 24th 2008.

This place is fantastic, and the person who said the cakes are like packet mix is clearly deluded! They are in fact delicious, and I love the cake and icing flavour-combos they come up with. I've taken Sweet Tooth cakes to friends as gifts, and everyone agrees they're unbeatable!

meNovember 24th 2008.

their website is now live at http://www.sweettoothcupcakery.co.uk - i think there's a number and email address on there

maxineNovember 24th 2008.

This shop is gorgeous...really funky and the cakes are moist and delicious. The 'five dollar shakes' are to die for too!

AnonymousNovember 24th 2008.

I have to argue with the packet mix review! The cakes are amazing in that shop- all my friends are completely addicted to them- It's a gorgeous shop, the cakes taste amazing and the texture is fabulous.It's also good for a bit of local celeb spotting- last time I was in Simon Rimmer was bulk buying cakes!!

AnonymousNovember 24th 2008.

this shop is amazing! at the top of my road, however if you want the best if the best you need to check out Cupcake Palace cupcakepalace.blogspot.com

ellie may rayNovember 24th 2008.

yum!!!! wonder if they deliver to Bahrain?

AnonymousNovember 24th 2008.

Best cakes in Manchester bar none!

johnPNovember 24th 2008.

Brilliant

ZabzyNovember 24th 2008.

Tha Barbakan has to be the king of chorlton, its been there for years and its fresh baked bread is soooo nice. I love the unicorn too.... chorlton really does have it all

AvoNovember 24th 2008.

Hmmm...Delightful cupcakes served by a Nigella Lawson lookalike you say?!? Think I might have to get my best threads on and make a trip over to Chorlton.

angilegsNovember 24th 2008.

Anyone have a telephone number for this place...and do they deliver?? (didn't read all the comments).

DiddyNovember 24th 2008.

Anonymous, obviously has no tastebuds, probably something to do with all the lentils and beans they eat.

OBurgerNovember 24th 2008.

We've just boycotted this place after spending a serious amount of cupcake cash, and experiencing snooty service on every occasion. Miss Received Pronunciation served us on saturday, and chose to ignore my friend's two eager-eyed and patient children, more interested in sounding off to her colleague about her evening din-dins plans. Expect a higher class of service at Greggs. The interior of Sweet Tooth may be vintage, but the service is like, totally, whatever.

AnonymousNovember 24th 2008.

Yum Yum, The Johnny Cash has an actual oreo as the base!!! Fabulous cakes and really lovely staff - happy its arrived on my doorstep.

AnonymousNovember 24th 2008.

I have to agree with the packet mix comments. I have been looking forward to getting inside this shop for ages but its rarely open. Today I went and got a chocolate cupcake. It was £1.65. Its not the price that's the problem, it's just that its not that nice. I will eat and love anything sweet but the cakes are full of air and crumbly and the icing is just like angel delight. I've had better school dinner desserts last week. Save your money and go to Tesco for a chocolate croissant!

AnonymousNovember 24th 2008.

Are they the team who opens a stall at the Manchester Farmers(?) Market in city centre? I saw some nice cake there last week.

DaveNovember 24th 2008.

For those complaining about the price, don't be so boring - you pays your money, you takes your choice. It seems all hand made with fresh ingredients. Far better value than a starbucks coffee imo!

mirriNovember 24th 2008.

Sweet Tooth Cupcakery - delicious!The cakes are exquisite, individual works of art and they taste gorgeous.I was on my way home to Surrey after visiting friends in the area who told me about this little piece of paradise. I am a confirmed cakeaholic so I had to find out for myself. The huge assortment of flavours was mind boggling and I couldn't decide so I bought 12 to take home. My favourite was Mint Royale a combination of real dark chocolate sponge and a green minty icing with a mint crisp on top - scrummy! I am going back in December with a large order for all my friends - there is nothing like this in the South East. Chorlton is most definately on the map now!

lizzieNovember 24th 2008.

Was disappointed that they only open 3 days a week.I would like a treat any day of the week.If you run a business to make money then if it was mine I'd be open 7 days a week.I suppose the prices could come down then.They are just big enough but possibly cheaper in price.Considering Irenes sewing box has been open 18 years nextdoor.They are missing out on lots of potential customers.I do run my own business 7 days a week 16 hour days and have done so for 12 years.Maybe it's just a Hobby!If I wasn't running the business I'm in now I'd love to do that for 7 days a week and I can think of alot more potential for it.

AnonymousNovember 24th 2008.

It's open 10.30 - 5.30. Get there early - they sell (quite literally) like hot cakes.

AnonymousNovember 24th 2008.

These cakes are fabulous and you should beat a path to their door!!!

OBurgerNovember 24th 2008.

We've just boycotted this place after spending a serious amount of cupcake cash, and experiencing snooty service on every occasion. Miss Received Pronunciation served us on saturday, and chose to ignore my friend's two eager-eyed and patient children, more interested in sounding off to her colleague about her evening din-dins plans. Expect a higher class of service at Greggs. The interior of Sweet Tooth may be vintage, but the service is like, totally, whatever.

jessyNovember 24th 2008.

ooo i saw that stall at the market too. Haven't been to chorlton yet but heard about it. Cakes at the market are ace but don't think they're there every week. Worth a look at their blog to see when they're in town.

miss februaryNovember 24th 2008.

I went just as they had locked the doors but one of the lovely staff let me in. She was really nice but the other lady working had a very unpleasant nature and was very rude to me. I bought quite a few cakes and wasn't impressed by any of them, the cake itself wasn't moist at all and flavourless. All the flavour was in the icing but there was far too much of it, I felt like it might as well be eating a pack of sugar. Completely unoriginal and nothing compared to Magnolia Bakery cupcakes which I make myself.

AnonymousNovember 24th 2008.

wow - asking for a charles manson - what a ground breaking sense of humour you have shiveringgoat.

ADNovember 24th 2008.

I cant belive there are people posting negative comments about this place - the decor the cakes the staff have all been fantastic. I've bought them into work, I've bought them home for my mum, I've given them as gifts to friends and they have been universaly loved...

fairy cakeNovember 24th 2008.

fairy cakes are not made in vietnam either and neither do they cost £100...if your nike's were made in vietnam and cost £1.50, I bet you'd buy them then Anonymous!

AnonymousNovember 24th 2008.

I think Harvey Nicks has some cup cakes. How would you reckon? They may not so good? and how about Barbakan's cakes?

DiddyNovember 24th 2008.

They shop is lovely, the staff are friendly, great idea and the cakes look fabulous . However, I totally, totally agree with the person who said that the cakes taste like they are made from a packet mix, very disappointing, my friend thought the same. To be honest I don't see this business lasting very long

MinnyNovember 24th 2008.

The cakes in Sweet Tooth are really cute. I had some from the i love cake stall on the Farmers Market too and they were so good! (and a bit cheaper).

AnonymousNovember 24th 2008.

Watery? Not sure which cupcake shop you've been in, but the only icing I've tasted in here has been fluffier than those clouds the orb wrote about. Gorgeous voluptuous mounds of creamy tasty goodness. Save some Scarlett O Hara's for me........

AnonymousNovember 24th 2008.

Gorgeous looking cakes but completely snotty up herself owner, with customer service like hers it doesn't matter how great the cakes are!!

AnonymousNovember 24th 2008.

That all sounds great for Chorlton but we have a brilliant cupcake company in North Manchester called Made in Heaven - http://www.heavenlytreat.co.uk and they really are treats

JaneNovember 24th 2008.

Both are really yummy! I'm addicted to i love cake's carrot cake and sweet tooth's peanut butter one is so good. i love cake have a really cute blog called cakeylove

ChrisNovember 24th 2008.

So it's open Thursdays - Saturdays, but does anyone know the opening hours?

AnonymousNovember 24th 2008.

You should go, if only for the Nigella-a-like in the kitchen!!Cakes are amazing and make ace presents as well.

PuddingManMarch 31st 2011.

Why not bring all your varied - and clearly discerning - tastebuds along to the recently started Chorlton Green Farmers Market! It takes place on the last Saturday of every month on the road in front of Horse & Jockey pub, from 11am to 5pm. There are two bakers present, with cupcakes, so something to suit everyone (hopefully!).

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The staff should wear clothes made out of corn flakes.

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