Hello Milk Bar Vegas!

Every time I go on travel, I truly try to make the most of it and have a sweet time! When I went to Washington DC, a couple of weeks ago, I had the pleasure of getting some treats at Milk Bar DC. Who would’ve thought that I’d be able to try Milk Bar again a few weeks later but now on the West Coast.

As those who read my last blog post, I recently had got to eat at the very delicious Momofuku Vegas at The Cosmopolitan. When there is a Momofuku, then of course there is a Milk Bar. In bright neon pink lights, shines the cute Milk Bar at the second floor of The Cosmopolitan. 

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Like my trip to Milk Bar DC I was once again in true bliss with the all the delicious sweets they had to offer. Needless to say,  I once again got a variety of goodies. (Hmm as I stated earlier, i try to make the most of it when I travel! ๐Ÿ˜‰

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I was such a fan of Milk Bar’s cookies from my DC trip, that I got a couple more here at Milk Bar Vegas.

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One of the nice things about visiting Milk Bar Vegas was I got to try some cookies that I didn’t get DC location and thus I got some new favorites and old favorites. This go around my cookie selection included the compost cookie, cornflake chocolate chip marshmallow cookie, chocolate chocolate cookie, corn cookie and their blueberry cream cookie. What can I say? I’m a true cookie monster err kitty. ๐Ÿ˜‰

The compost cookie is what I was told is Milk Bar’s most popular. It’s a chew cookie that is packed with pretzels, potato chips, coffee, oats, graham cracker, butterscotch and chocolate chips. I love how they combine salty and sweet.

The cornflake chocolate chip marshmallow is a chocolate chip cookie with a twist. Along with chocolate chips, there are crunchy cornflakes, gooey marshmallows and mini chocolate chips.

The chocolate chocolate cookie is for all the chocolate lovers! It’s double chocolate heaven with chocolate cookie dough and chocolate crumbs. It’s a rich brownie but in cookie form.

The corn cookie was the other cookie I didn’t get to try. I’ve always been a fan of corn bread and this cookie reminded me of that. It has the just the right sweetness and butter flavor that I love from corn bread.

Aside from the cookies, I absolutely was a fan of the Milk Bar soft serve. When in DC, I tried their cereal milk soft serve and thus in Vegas I was curious to try the other flavors.

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I’ve always wanted to try the birthday soft serve. I loved this birthday layer cake flavored  ice cream that was surrounded with rainbow sprinkles. It’s not my birthday but it sure was party time for my palate with this!

I was pleasantly surprised to see that Milk Bar Vegas has crack pie soft serve! It’s no secret that crack pie is one of their top sellers. The crack pie’ signature gooey butter flavor can be found in this delightful, creamy soft serve. This is definitely one of my favorite flavors.

Speaking of crack pie, I couldn’t let a trip to Milk Bar pass without getting some crack pie.

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The crack pie is as addicting as I remember it! Buttery and simply melts in your mouth. Hmm it can be dangerous that there is Milk Bar in the West Coast now ;). Oh Vegas, you and your vices hehe.

Lastly I got a trio of Milk Bar’s truffles. The truffles were an item that I never got to try in DC and thus I was excited to try them out.

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Milk Bar has three cake truffles. They are birthday truffles, chocolate malt cake truffles and strawberry lemon cake truffles.

The birthday cake truffles were the first ones I tried. They say this is a “birthday party in a bite” and it is indeed true. These truffles are made out of vanilla rainbow cake mixed with vanilla infused milk. It is then coated with white chocolate and rolled in rainbow cake crumbs. Sweet and moist, party flavor indeed!

The chocolate malt cake truffles were divine! This is another treat for those who love chocolate. These truffles are made out of rich chocolate cake mixed with malted milk. It is also coated with white chocolate and rolled in malted milk crumbs!

Last but not least were the strawberry lemon cake truffles! These were my favorite. I love both strawberries and lemons and so this combo truffle was perfect for me. These truffles consist of vanilla cake mixed with lemon juice and then it is coated with white chocolate and rolled in strawberry milk crumbs. It’s a strawberry shortcake with lemon flavoring!

Vegas has always been a sweet place to visit for many but for me I now I can truly say my heart has a sweet spot for Sin City, thanks to Milk Bar Vegas. Milk Bar’s slogan is “we’re here to make your day a little sweeter.” They truly have done that for me and making my trips a little sweeter. ๐Ÿ˜‰

For more smiles, please see my Yelp review on Milk Bar Vegas! 

Hello Momofuku Vegas!

You know you like a place when you visit a place almost back to back! Case in point, I was at Momofuku CCDC  in Washington DC just last month and shortly after I found myself at Momofuku Vegas. Yes, from East Coast to West Coast, I went from one Momofuku to another Momofuku. That’s because Momofuku is truly momo-f’ good ;).

Momofuku Vegas is the newest of the Momofuku restaurants and is the only one on the West Coast! (Woohoo! One close to home!) It’s located at one of my favorite places on the Las Vegas Strip, The Cosmopolitan. The restaurant itself actually has a gorgeous view overlooking The Strip. (Hint for the best seat in the house ask for Table Y)

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The menu at Momofuku Las Vegas does differ a little bit from the Momofuku CCDC. David Chang always does a nice job of bringing in some new flavors to his menus while combining with some classic favorites!

My meal at Momofuku Vegas started off with trying several of their small plates

First up was their Crudite Plate

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The Cruidite Plate is a beautiful rainbow of veggies that are accompanied with chickpea dip and bacon ranch. If you want to get your healthy on, this plate is a sure fire and fun way to do that! I loved the crispy radishes and crunchy cauliflowers mixing it in the two sauces. It’s unique, different and tasty!

Next from the small plates, we tried the Spicy Cucumbers.

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If you’re a fan of spicy, this small plate is for you. The cucumbers are sprinkled with togarashi or Japanese dried chil peppers. Toasted almond and scallions are also mixed into this starter.

Speaking of spicy, the hottest and most memorable dish came in the form of the Shishito Peppers!

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We all know Vegas is a gigantic playground for adults and there’s lot of games all around. Well who would’ve thought there is a game to be played at Momofuku Vegas via the Shishito Peppers. When ordering this dish, you a presented with a bowl of peppers sprinkled with smoked salt and lime. Most of the peppers are not too hot except for one or maybe two. There’s the two peppers that put the F in fire and will sure to light up your tastebuds. The catch with this game err dish is that you don’t know which Shishito Pepper it is. You could be the lucky winner and end up getting the fiery one!

Soon after the starters, it was time for some main courses! First up with Momofuku Vegas’s two ramen bowls; the Chickpea Ramen and the Pork Ramen.

The Chickpea Ramen is perfect for vegetarians.

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This ramen is has no meat and instead consists of scallion, chickpea miso and bok choy! They give me an abundant serving of crispy chickpeas that brought a unique texture to this soup dish!

The pork ramen is one that I’ve tried before at Momofuku CCDC.

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I’m happy to see this old favorite also on the Vegas menu. The tender pork belly and shoulder and the soft slow poached egg once again was melting in my mouth an bringing this foodie pure happiness!

After the ramen, I got to try their Katsu Chicken dish.

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Katsu Chicken is one of my favorite dishes ever and so I was quite happy to see this on the Momofuku menu! They give a pretty big portion of crispy Katsu Chicken that is accompanied with bulldog sauce, cabbage and pickled shitake. I loved the topping the chicken with the shitake mushroom and dipping it in the bulldog sauce.

Another favorite dish of mine soon came after via the form of Spring Vegetable Rice Cakes.

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Similar to Katsu Chicken, rice cakes have always been something I’ve been a fan of! This Momofuku Vegas dish exceeded my expectations and more. Their version of rice cakes was perfectly chewy and the various spring vegetables and crunchy garlic on top, further enhanced the texture of the dish and the overall flavor! I definitely recommend getting this dish.

Last but definitely not least was their buns! For those who read my Momofuku CCDC blog post, you know that I was absolutely amazed by Momofuku’s buns. The soft buns and their fillings were so mouth watering that I had to just try each of the ones that the Vegas branch offered.

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Firs tup were their pork belly and shitake buns.

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The pork belly bun is filled with a thick pork belly that is smothered with hoisin and accompanied with scallion and cucumber. The pork belly here is similar to the one found in the pork ramen. It’s such a juicy and hearty meat and goes well with the soft bun!

Equal in deliciousness is the shitake bun. This one is filled with lots of shitake mushrooms flavored with hoisin sauce. It also has scallion and cucumber. I’ve always been a big fan of shitake mushroom and I’m happy to see this as the choice of veggie for their vegetarian bun.

For those looking for a seafood bun, the shrimp bun is for you!

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The shrimp bun has a gigantic shrimp filet that is topped with spicy mayo, pickled red onion and iceberg lettuce.

My favorite of all of the buns however came via the chicken karaage bun!

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My oh my, if heaven could be in a bun; this bun would be it! Fresh, hot, crispy chicken karaage was inside along with spicy mayo, pickled red onion and iceberg lettuce. The golden crisp chicken simply blew me away. No bun will ever be the same.

Just like at Momofuku CCDC, every thing I tried at Momofuku Vegas was wonderful! I have to give a special thanks to general manager Robby of Momofuku CCDC for helping me make reservations at Momofuku Vegas and to general manager Ryan and his team at Momofuku Vegas for the outstanding service and good eats! It’s so nice to have one of my favorite restaurants on the East Coast now on the West Coast!

For more smiles, please see my Yelp review on Momofuku Vegas.
 

Hello Truxton’s Torrance!

Truxton’s American Bistro has finally hit Torrance, California! The popular restaurant specializing in New American cuisine has opened up its third location at Hillside Village in the South Bay! The other two locations are in Westchester, California and Santa Monica, California.

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It took six years before Truxton’s found a home in Hillside Village and now it’s finnaly ready for all of us in the South Bay and beyond. Truxton’s had their grand opening in Torrance this June 9, 2017! Being a South Bay local, I was so excited to try out the newest spot on the hill.

Truxton’s is well-known for their monkey bread and I couldn’t let a visit pass by Truxton’s without it.

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Monkey bread is traditionally known as a soft, sweet, sticky bread that is easily torn away with the fingers and eaten by hand. Truxton’s however does monkey bread a little bit different. It’s not sweet and sticky but instead cheesy and garlicky.  Their pull-apart housemade bread is packed with cheddar cheese and garlic. It’s fresh from the oven and so soft. It’s amazing when dipped in the trio of sauces that comes with. The sauces are marinara, garlic butter sauce or ranch dipping sauce. The marinara gives the monkey bread a sweet tomato touch. The garlic butter sauce enhances the garlic side of the bread and gives it’s a nice, buttery taste. The creaminess of the ranch is a perfect pair to the cheese. This monkey bread is a great starter!

One of the things that I love about Truxton’s is the variety of their menu. They’ve got sandwiches, burgers, pastas, salads, vegetarian dishes and handful of healthful plates I also like that they continuously offer new items and seasonal ones. One my visit here I got to try two of their newest seasonal offerings from their healthful plates.

First off was their Turkish Spiced Chicken.

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The Turkish Spiced chicken dish consists of chicken rubbed in a blend of traditional spices.  This savory dish comes with seasoned Israeli couscous with crispy spiced garbanzo beans, fried shallots, barberries and parsley! I liked the aromatic, spiced chicken. The Israeli couscous was tender and toasted just right. This entree was light and healthy.

The second entree of the night consisted of my personal favorite, their new Spiced Brisket Bowl. This bowl was featured during the LA Times Food Bowl.

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Truxton’s has a very popular 11 spiced brisket dish that consists of slow roasted beef brisket. Imagine that brisket put into a healthy bowl with yummy, flavorful veggies. Hello Kitty Foodies, you don’t have to imagine too much because it is a reality via Truxton’s Spiced Brisket Bowl. The Spiced Brisket Bowl has beef brisket along with couscous and cauliflower rice that is mixed with golden raisins, butternut squash, red onion, parsley and toasted almond, kale, shaved brussels sprouts and pickled onions. White sauce is drizzled all over and it is topped with crispy heirloom carrots.  I truly have a crush on all the ingredients in this dish! The cauliflower rice was light and fluffy and I loved the addition of butternut squash, kale and brussel sprouts. I was a fan of the crunchiness brought in by the tasted almond and crispy heirloom carrots. The brisket brought it a nice, spicy kick to dish. This definitely dish was definitely a highlight.

It’s definitely nice to see Truxton’s American Bistro open up a third location and to see it in the South Bay! I had a wonderful time visiting their newest restaurant. I was full of smiles from dining here and am definitely looking forward to trying more of their dishes in the future.

For more smiles, please see my recent Yelp review on Truxton’s American Bistro in Torrance.

 

 

Hello Whole Foods LA West Yelp Elite Event!

Whole Foods in El Segundo is celebrating 10 years! The amazing 65,000 foot store opened their doors to LA West’s Yelp Elite Squad recently to celebrate a decade of fun eats and enjoyable shopping!

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It was just last Fall 2016, when The 2nd Bar opened up in Whole Foods in El Segundo. This delicious place has vegan, vegetarian and classic eats along with 36ย beers on tap,ย wines by the glass and aย Health-Ade Kombucha on tap. Our Yelp Elite event at Whole Foods started off with a lovely dinner here at The 2nd Bar where we got to try some of their dishes.

First dish was the Roasted Brussels Sprouts.

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I’ve always been a big fan of brussel sprouts and here at The 2nd Bar they gave a dish full of crispy, healthy brussel sprouts!

Second dish was the Kale Caesar.

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Similar to brussel sprouts, I also love kale! I liked this twist on the traditional Caesar salad. This salad consisted of baby kale sprinkled with shaved parmesan and rye bread crumbs! Can we say, yum?!

Third course was the Cauliflower Nachos.

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This vegan dish was my favorite offering of the night. It had fried cauliflower with chilies, pico de gallo, cilantro, lime and avocado lime crema. I loved how this crispy cauliflower dish was packed with flavor.

Our last main entree was their NY Steak and Frites.

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A juicy strip loin was served with her butter and french fries! This was a very fulfilling dish.

Along with the savory eats, we sipped to Kombucha cocktail and Domaine de Cala.

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The meal at The 2nd Bar was just the start of the night because soon after we were off to scavenger like hunt throughout Whole Foods! Our mission: to find ten tasting stations and try out the different Whole Foods offerings.

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The ten stations were:

  • ย The bakery section: This station was highlighted by French baker Xavier who offered us three types of bread.
  • The specialty cheese section: This station featured cheese blends from Spicy Mo’s.img_0887
  • The specialty drink section featured Buzz Box. These are juice boxes for adults! Who ever thought one could have Long Island iced teas, Whiskey Lemonade or margaritas from a juice box?!
  • ย The sushi station had Kikka sushi. They had a vegan firecracker roll, crunchy shrimp tempura, tuna nigiri, salmon nigiri, crunchy shrimp kafir lime and spicy salmon avocado.
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  • The mochi station featured Bubbles Mochi from Hawaii. We got to taste mango, vanilla and passion fruit mochi!
  • The Kogi station had some of Roy Choi’s fabulous kimchi quesadillas.ย img_0885
  • The Health Aid Kombucha station had more Kombucha flavors for us to try! Pomegrante, ginger, apple…it was kombucha like no other!
  • The juice bar had even more drinks via four refreshing juices.
  • The Beyond Meat station was a true treat for vegans! They had some meaty yet not meat sandwiches for all of us to try.
  • Last but not least was the smokehouse station. They gave us one hearty tasting plate filled with brisket, collard greens, mashed potatoes and Mac and cheese.

Mission accomplished! The Yelp Elites and the ladies of Table 1 made it through the ten course tasting stations! With plenty of giggles, girl talk and happy eats, it was quite a night! Happy 10 years Whole Foods El Segundo!

Just like Whole Foods El Segundo, this Hello Kitty Foodie is also celebrating something very special. This event marks my 1000th yelp review! I could not think of a more perfect way to celebrate than via a lovely and fun night out Yelp Elite style! It was a night full of Yelp fun and smiles!

For more smiles, please sees my 1000th Yelp reviewย ย on The Whole Foods LA West Yelp Elite Event!

Hello Mindi’s Kitchen!

Jia Ba Bue?

Have you eaten?

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If not, then why not have a meal at Mindi’s Kitchen. Mindi’s Kitchen is a newly opened Taiwanese restaurant in Torrance, California. ย It is located in the same plaza that houses 85 Degrees C and Max Karaoke. (Not a bad location at all because you can get yummy Taiwanese food, then go happily belt out a few tunes next door). ๐Ÿ˜‰

Taiwan was once voted by CNN readers as the best food destination in the world and the city of Taipei is said to have 20 streets dedicated to food. For us folks who aren’t traveling to Taiwan soon however, Mindi’s Kitchen has a nice selection of dishes that will show you what Taiwanese food is all about.

They serve their food here Bento style. The Bentos are served with sides, soup and rice. For the main entrees, they have pork belly (deep-fried or regular) Taiwanese sausage, pork chop, fried chicken filet, 5 spice minced pork, cha-cha BBQ beef, Chia-Yi shredded chicken and popcorn chicken.

When I saw popcorn chicken as one of their offerings, I knew I had to try this bento! Popcorn chicken is one of my favorite Taiwanese dishes.

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Mindi’s Kitchen’s popcorn chicken bento came with lots of tender and crispy popcorn chicken pieces! It was accompanied with scrambled egg, tofu and veggies. Popcorn chicken is normally a snack but I love how Mindi’s Kitchen made this into a full meal!

Though newly opened and with a full menu, Mindi’s Kitchen is already looking at adding more items to their menu. Coming soon will be Mindi’s Lion-Head Meatball Bento. I’ve heard this is a favorite of owner Mindi’s father in law and now she is going to share this with all of us. Although it’s not quite yet on their menu, I was able to get a chance to try it when I visited.

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Mindi’s Lion-Head Meatball consisted of two very large pork meatballs. They were over 6cm in diameter. They were not only huge in size but huge in taste as well. I loved the overall tenderness and the oozing flavor. These meatballs were great with the accompanying veggies! I can’t wait to see this rawring its way permanently onto the menu.

Jia Ba Bue? If not, then what are you waiting for! Mindi’s Kitchen is open and ready to serve you Taiwanese food that is sure to make you smile.

For more smiles, please see myย Yelp reviewย on Mindi’s Kitchen!

Hello Swirl Softserve!

“Ice cream makes everything better”

Sometimes all we need is some brightness and smile to help us through the day and what better way than ice cream. There’s a cute little shop that recently opened up in Hawthorne, California that is doing just that; bringing smiles. Swirl Softserve is all about making life a little more sweet (and better ๐Ÿ˜‰ through ice cream.

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Swirl Softserve specializes in soft serve, sundaes and Stumptown cold brew coffee. They even offer non-dairy to vegan ice cream. There truly is a treat for every tastebud here! Happiness for all! ๐Ÿ™‚

They offer a variety of yummy flavors. Among the flavors I’ve seen are vanilla (an old favorite), pineapple (hmm rumor has it, that it tastes like Disneyland dole whip), java chip (who doesn’t love coffee) and blue monkey (a blue colored birthday cake). From classic favorites to unique flavors, one cannot help but smile with the variety.

When I visited Swirl Softserve, I was definitely in need of some cheer and their blue monkey ice cream did just that. It’s not only bright and cute on the outside, it’s creamy and delicious too! It truly did seem ice cream can make everything better.  ๐Ÿ˜‰

Swirl Softserve gave me the smile I needed that day, and I’m sure it will bring many others smiles as well! Do checkout the newest soft serve shop in the South Bay and you’ll be reminded that life is sweet. ๐Ÿ™‚

For more smiles, please see my Yelp review  on Swirl Softserve.

Hello Georgetown Cupcake!

Good Ol’ Georgetown! There are so many visits to visit in this historic town. Among the many sights to see are the Old Stone House, Kennedy Homes, Tudor Place, Historic Churches and Georgetown University. No trip to Georgetown however would be complete without a visit to Georgetown Cupcakes.

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The famous cupcake shop opened in Georgetown in 2008. Since then founders and sisters Katherine Kallinis Berman and Sophie Kallinis LaMontagne  have expanded their cupcake empire to include locations in Bethesda, New York City, Boston, Los Angeles, and Atlanta. Georgetown Cupcakes was also the star of the reality show enter of a reality  โ€œDC Cupcakesโ€ that ran on TLC from 2010 to 2013.

Soon after touring the historic sights of Georgetown, I went to M street where Georgetown Cupcake is located. Spotting the bright pink signs, I happily made my way into the cute cupcake shop.  There was an abundant of delicious cupcake offerings that day. Their most popular, the red velvet cupcake, was of course offered. They also had some delicious offerings such as double milk chocolate birthday cupcakes, raspberry lemonade cupcake, lemon blossom cupcakes and coffee cookies and creme cupcakes.

After having quite a time deciding what to get, I chose to get their green tea butterfly cupcake and their raspberry swirl cheesecake cupcake.

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The green tea butterfly cupcake is absolutely beautiful. It’s the perfect cupcake for springtime. It’s a green tea and citrus-infused cupcake with green tea-infused buttercream frosting. It is topped off with candy and yogurt-covered pretzel butterfly. I really liked the touch of the yogurt covered pretzels. The sweet crunchy pretzel went well with the green tea infused buttercream frosting.

My favorite however had to be the raspberry swirl cheesecake cupcake however. It is a raspberry swirl cheesecake baked with fresh raspberries and a graham cracker crust, topped with a Madagascar vanilla buttercream frosting and a pink fondant flower. This cupcake looks simple yet it is packed with delicious flavor. It was truly love at first bite when I bit into the crispy graham cracker crust at the bottom. The cheesecake itself was delightfully creamy and light. This truly was one of the best cupcakes ever.

In a town where there’s so many wonderful sights to visit, Georgetown Cupcake is a breath of fresh air. It’s a sweet place with sweet treats for locals and tourists. Their cupcakes are sure to bring a smile to anyone visiting Georgetown.

For more smiles, please read my Yelp review on Georgetown Cucpakes