Crumbs Bake Shop
2839 N. Clarendon Blvd.
Arlington, VA 22201
Having failed to receive the memo that cupcakes have gone the way of mesh trucker caps and Ithaca Is Gorges t-shirts, Crumbs Bake Shop, a New York based cupcake bakery chain, has recently opened in Clarendon (which clearly needs more chain restaurants and eateries). It is a little storefront shop next to a Red Mango, and its presence has now supplanted the tart Korean yogurt establishment as the most dated dessert fad on the block.
Clearly meant to cater to recent college grads and square state transplants who haven't yet become utterly wearied by the surfeit of cupcake shops in the DMV, it is a small, intimate space with about three tables shunted to the side of the store. After ordering at the counter and sitting down, I was glad to see the store live up to its name as I looked down upon a complimentary dusting of crumbs on the table.
I chose the Cookie Dough cupcake, a vanilla based cupcake with a huge wad of cream cheese frosting on top. It wasn't dry, though it wasn't exactly moist either. but the frosting was so confected and the cake felt so processed, I flashbacked to my days in college when I would eat a box of Entenmann's pastries as a chaser after downing a forty of Colt 45. Though not as pleasantly evocative of thing's past as Proust's Madeline, it was amusing to reminisce about times in my erstwhile youth when I had the metabolism to process the calories and chemical preservatives in this monstrosity of a sugar bomb.
My friends ordered a chocolate cupcake and a blueberry muffin. The chocolate cupcake was apparently, and unsurprisingly, dry. The muffin was reported to be edible, but it looked like something that came fresh out of Dunkin Donuts display case just around closing time.
I wouldn't completely write the place off. If you want to get a coffee and chat with a friend, this will do and is certainly better than Starbucks. There aren't many other options in the area.