Smile Politely

Ask Politely #14

Sugary sweet confections aren’t something folks generally turn down. So, when a little storefront opened up proclaiming “Cakes on Walnut,” it was only natural that Champaign residents threw their scales out the window and gave the new cupcake shop a try.

Smile Politely loves when new businesses pop up in town. Cakes on Walnut, at 114 N. Walnut Street, was certainly bustling during last week’s Ebertfest, as movie-goers bopped around downtown with white boxes — large and small — or sat at the outdoor bar indulging in the sugary grub.

So now that the dust has settled, what did you think?

Owned by the sister duo, Trisha Bates and Amanda Bates, the interior boasts a pleasantly-modern setup, but with magazines galore, a sitting area, and wireless internet access to boot. The former shoe repair shop offers a cozy enough invitation to hunker down with a cupcake for an afternoon sweet treat.

Guided by the staff at Bacaro, the Bates’ sisters concocted an array of fancy sandwiches such as turkey apple quince and white bean and Parmesan, so “Cakes on Walnut” is no one-trick pony. Cupcake flavors include red velvet, vanilla, chocolate, classic yellow, salted caramel, strawberry balsamic — and Smile Politely has heard raves and jeers about the offerings.

Is a cupcake habit (at $2.75 for a small and $3.50 for a large) something you can afford? Will you carve out a new column in your budget to include the saccharine delights?

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