Chow Bella

Cakes and Ribbon Bakery Serves Up Sweet Tres Leches Cake and Cupcakes

When a new spot opens in town, we can't wait to check it out -- and let you know our initial impressions, share a few photos, and dish about some menu items. First Taste, as the name implies, is not a full-blown review, but instead a peek inside restaurants that have just opened, sampling a few items, and satisfying curiosities (yours and ours).

Bakery: Cakes and Ribbon Location: 3036 N. 24th Street Open: Two months Eats: Desserts, bakery Price: $1 to $5

It's hard to miss the bright pink sign. Cakes and Ribbon bakery opened their shop two months ago, with cupcakes, tres leches cake, candy apples and other sweets filling their small counter refrigerator.

Owned by brother and sister duo Maria del Carmen Vasquez and Cesar Gonzalez, their business began five years before the brick and mortar with wedding, quinceñera and custom cakes.

Cakes and Ribbon's tres leches cake ($3.25 per slice) only sits in the milk, so the expected wet texture was not evident. Tres leches is a traditional Latin American cake made with three kinds of milk: evaporated milk, sweetened condensed milk, and half-and-half. Normally after the cake cools the glaze is poured on top and it soaks. The batter was plain yellow, with semi-sweet icing that was not too sweet. The strawberries on top were too tart.

The cupcakes ($1.75 each) smell so rich when pulled from its case, but don't knock you off your feet with an overdose of chocolate. The frosting is smooth and the inside is so moist, so you can bet we inhaled the cupcake. The flavor is reminiscent of a Ding-Dong, bringing on feelings of nostalgia.

If attempting to eat healthy, go for a candy apple ($3.50). White or dark chocolate coat them, with roasted coconut shreds. With a gala apple as the base, the white chocolate was semi-sweet and had a toasty flavor from the coconut.

Along with their sweets, Cakes and Ribbon sells cupcake-making supplies, often in correlation with the current holiday season.

The black and pink walls, complete with a chandelier, and black and white striped curtains offers a modest selection. Feel free to talk about the origins of their business with Gonzalez, or take a seat on the pink couch and look one of their three binders full of their past custom cakes.

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Natalie Miranda