Ditch that foot-long hoagie, go cakegasm for lunch
Eating cake is probably my favorite form of exercise. You lift your fork to your mouth then chew — it’s a verb, so therefore it’s exercise.
New Brunswick really lacks in the bakery department. I don’t know of any specialty bakeshops around town, which is just downright ludicrous. Scarlet Sweets is opening soon at The Yard, but they are not open yet unfortunately — disregard the tear rolling down my cheek.
It’s okay though, because I discovered a five-star “bakery” at a deli. Yes, I repeat, a deli. The Rafferty Gourmet, which is connected to Old Man Rafferty’s, has a colossal display window full of intricate cakes, cookies, brownies and other ritzy looking desserts. My jaw dropped once I walked in. I went there just to get a basic sandwich then bam, I come across Betty Crocker land.
Once I saw the display, I’m pretty sure cake emojis flashed in my eyes. These were probably the most fancy cakes I’ve ever seen in my 20 years of cake consumption.
They had a cake called “Vesuvius,” which is chocolate brownie cake layered with caramel, then topped with cheesecake. This sounds decadent enough, but of course they didn’t stop there because this place is hella ritzy. It’s also dipped in chocolate ganache, topped with chocolate mousse and nuts— can’t forget those nuts. This cake had a pretty obscure name so I thought, “Eh, this is too over-the-top fancy for me.” Plus, with all that chocolate at once, my insides would probably turn into Willy Wonka’s Chocolate Factory.
My eyes wandered around the 20-plus cakes for probably 20 minutes while the lady was staring me down at the counter. She probably thought I was an indecisive weirdo, but what does she want from life — leave me alone lady, I’m cake shopping.
I ultimately decided on the “Banana Chocolate Chip,” which consists of creamy custard and sweet bananas with a dense banana cake filled with dark chocolate chips.
I’m surprised I wasn’t delirious from all the cake-staring and managed to pay normally. I paid a whopping $6.25 for a slice of cake — wow, I must have really wanted to shove cake in my mouth.
Since my cake was “fine-dining” material, I of course wanted my environment to match the occasion. I chose to sit on a lovely bench with cigarette buds surrounding me. I truly felt like I was dining at the Ritz-Carlton.
Okay, so sitting outside in New Brunswick isn’t exactly the epitome of fancy living, but I was not going to allow that to sabotage my intimate cake moment.
I swear I shoved this cake in my mouth so fast I basically got whiplash. It was the equivalent of a vacuum cleaner sucking stuff up — cake edition. The banana cake was thick and moist as it disintegrated in my mouth. The icing exploded banana flavor all over my taste buds and was actually legit icing, not that ratchet buttercream mush grocery store “bakeries” use on cakes.
The custard in between one layer of the cake was actually banana flavored as well. This place doesn’t mess around. Once I hit the chocolate fudge layer with dark chocolate chips scattered throughout I think I blacked out from the intense cake-gasm I had. It’s unfortunately all a blur from there.
I went back two days later to attempt this life changing cake experience all over again. I bought the “Salted Caramel Vanilla Crunch Cake” because the menu description online (yes, I looked up cake online because I’m a wack job when it comes to cake) sounded magnificent stating, “Crave upon crave. Our supernaturally light, but buttery, vanilla-flecked pudding cake holds waves of rich caramel cake. Drama builds in this masterpiece with a salted caramel crunch layer, a creamy custard layer and a sexy caramel finish.”
I obviously bought it and then on my way out, I dropped it on the street. I guess that’s my cue to take a break from all these cake-gasms.
You know, I wonder if Old Man Rafferty is some old guy in the back that makes these cakes. If that’s the case, he should go on Cupcake Wars.