Rebuilding Place in the Urban Space

"A community’s physical form, rather than its land uses, is its most intrinsic and enduring characteristic." [Katz, EPA] This blog focuses on place and placemaking and all that makes it work--historic preservation, urban design, transportation, asset-based community development, arts & cultural development, commercial district revitalization, tourism & destination development, and quality of life advocacy--along with doses of civic engagement and good governance watchdogging.

Friday, December 25, 2015

Happy Holidays

Happy Holidays decorated cake from SusieCakes.
A cake on display at SusieCakes.

(I saw that the once touted cakelove is closing their last store ("Cupcake trendsetter closing its original D.C. location," WBJ).

I never thought their items were that good--the buttercream icing was too buttery and the cake, or "sponge" as it's called in the "Great British Baking Show" wasn't all that, and I could never understand all the hype.

SusieCakes items are amazing.  If cakelove products were that good, they wouldn't be closing. SusieCakes is growing, soon to open their 18th store.

And the end of the day, quality is what matters. For them or for Crumbs.)


At 11:06 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

13 years was a good run I suppose. In the interest of revitalization, I'll reluctantly support mediocre businesses for awhile until there is critical mass. This business was lucky to have TV and Oprah on their side, therefore extending the shelf life of their dry cupcakes about 10 years beyond the time they should have shuttered.

At 10:58 AM, Blogger Richard Layman said...

what was very frustrating working in commercial district revitalization was being asked to herald mediocre businesses, or being pushed to promote businesses before they were ready, or when they had evident faults.

I did it at the behest of a city official for the Phish Tea restaurant on H Street NE in 2002/2003 (can't remember exactly) and the restaurant was a disaster.

I vowed then never ever to succumb to pressure on promoting a business or issue in the face of my own doubts or knowledge.

You're right that the biz. lasted far longer than it deserved.

The only reason I mentioned it is that I read the piece in WBJ after sharing a fabulous piece of cake from a shop in Orange County, CA. (1) the WBJ linked its failure to a change in trends, when in reality he theoretically led the trend, and others have continued to succeed. (2) the article mentioned Crumbs as another example of a failing company, chalked up to trends.

Crumbs too sucked. I bought cupcakes there once for the child next door's birthday, and they were average at best. Pretty much afterwards, I've vowed to make my own cakes.

I don't bake enough to be great at it, but almost anything I produce is better by comparison. It's not that hard to follow a recipe.

(Similarly, I started baking pies after not being happy with Hellers and not being willing to pay the high prices at specialty pie places like Dangerously Delicious Pies, which I admit, are great. Now, if I can only perfect baking my own crust...)


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