According to Vidya Sarjoo, co-owner of Cuckoo’s Bakery, the secret to making the perfect cupcake is “making it with love and passion, using the best ingredients possible and taking time not to rush it…making sure every stage is the best it can be”.
That is certainly what comes across when taking a bite of one of the creations offered by the new Cuckoo’s ‘cake wonderland’ in Bruntsfield.
As a sister shop to the Dundas Street Cuckoo’s Bakery, the new shop will specialise in layer cakes, celebration cakes and host the increasingly famous selection of light and airy cupcake creations.
Although Vidya and her business partner Graham Savage always knew that baking made them happy, it was after opening their first shop and seeing how much joy their cakes brought others that gave them the inspiration to push the boundaries and grow Cuckoo.
With all the bakeries in Edinburgh (and in fact, the world!) jumping on the cupcake bandwagon, Cuckoo’s intent was to not only bake the lightest sponge and whip the airiest icing, but to constantly improve on traditional flavours and develop innovative specials. Fridays provide a special treat when the bakers release a weekly ‘Friday Cuptail’…a cocktail themed cupcake. Mojito cake, anyone?
The variation of flavours ensures that anyone with a proclivity for a sweet treat could find something to satisfy even the most bizarre craving.
“Everyone who works at Cuckoo’s is part of the tasting process and the bakers are always sending samples to the shop for us to try feedback on.”
Opening their first shop in 2011, (Vidya recollects it as the “most stressful day of our lives”), Vidya and Graham’s passion for cakes soon became a big hit with Edinburgh locals and visitors alike. After frequent cake requests from customers based in Bruntsfield and Morningside, they decided to take the plunge and now sell over 3000 cupcakes and over 30 layer cakes a week. Cuckoo’s Bakery now hosts not only a ‘haberdashery’ of cakes and a selection of loose leaf tea (the grapefruit infused Blue Lady is our favourite), but is home to a giant hanging chandelier. “Why shouldn’t cakes be glamorous?” asks Vidya, while she admires it suspended above the trays of award winning white chocolate and raspberry cupcakes.
Stocked in both Harvey Nichols and Waterstones, the brand is going from strength to strength and I have no doubt that they will continue to grow. With a new found focus on celebration cakes, Cuckoo’s Bakery now offer a delivery service within Edinburgh.
Who’s it for?: Anyone with a sweet tooth.
The specifics: Glamorous and yet not ostentatious in anyway, the Bruntsfield shop oozes sophistication and beckons customers in with the smell of freshly loose leaf grapefruit infused tea and freshly baked cakes.
At first Glance: Friendly staff, high ceilings and the added glamour of a hanging chandelier.
Bill of Fare: Cake, cake and more cake.
The Frontrunners: Salted caramel and banana, Italian meringue and chocolate, apple and raspberry…or the classic carrot perhaps? The list goes on…and on.
The Feeling: You might just never want to leave. Enter at your own risk.
The Team: Knowledgeable and welcoming staff. The bakers are based in Leith and cakes are brought up to both shops daily and request is too much.
Doubtful: If you don’t have a sweet tooth, it might not be for you – but if you have a love of cake, this is certainly the place in Edinburgh to visit.
The Bottom Line: As with most places, you get what you pay for. Cakes cost from £22.00 while cupcakes start from £2.00. Made with fresh, and where possible, local, ingredients, it’s well placed to set the bar high.
Find them: 116 Bruntsfield Place, Edinburgh, EH10 4ES / 150 Dundas Street, Edinburgh, EH3 5DQ