Sprinkles, a confectionary chain specializing in cupcakes, has opened at Disney Springs with a new shop that features one of its Cupcake ATMs. The ATM works similarly to one you’d find on a wall outside a bank, except that instead of cash a user can withdraw a fresh cupcake. As far as I know, deposits are not accepted.
One caveat: You may need to visit a bank ATM in order to satisfy your cupcake withdrawal.
As I’ve stated before, I don’t quite understand the cupcake craze, but I’ve learned to accept that others find them irresistible. I’ve also given up trying to understand the Justin Bieber phenomenon.
And I have great admiration, from a business standpoint, for people like Candace Nelson, the founder of Sprinkles, who have built successful brands by convincing people to pay nearly five bucks for what is essentially a simple cakelet.
The cupcakes are $4.95, to be exact. For one, not a dozen as you might expect.
And no, the sprinkles in the bakery’s name are not little diamond chips or even edible gold dust flakes.
It’s just a freakin’ cupcake.
I had the opportunity to visit the Disney Springs Sprinkles last week before the opening as part of a media preview. Those of us in attendance were invited to choose some cupcakes and other treats of our choice.
I chose the Red Velvet version because the very pleasant young woman behind the counter said that it was their best seller. I didn’t inquire how it could be the best seller when the shop hadn’t opened yet, but it didn’t matter. I also chose the Carrot Cake variety because I like carrot cake. And, just for a taste of something else, I selected one of the Chocolate Chip Cookies because I wanted to see what a mere $3.50 would buy.
The two cupcakes were just fine, but neither was life-changingly good. (I would suggest that the Sprinkles bakers might want to visit Fatto in Casa at East End Market because Elisa Scarpa’s carrot cake is transformative.)
The cookie was a disappointment; it was too sugary and granular for my taste. I should mention that the nice young woman tried to steer me toward the Snickerdoodle, but I have a hard time saying snickerdoodle out loud, so I went with the chocolate chip.
I do think the ATM is fun (although it was not operational when I visited the other day). I first encountered one on Lexington Avenue in New York a couple of years ago and thought it was a clever idea. Although there are more than 20 Sprinkles nationwide, only a dozen — and not a baker’s dozen — have the ATM, so we’re special.
The decor of Sprinkles might be described as Early Hospital Sterile, which is not a bad look for a bakery. Hundreds of dollars worth of cupcakes are on display at any given time behind glass that should help prevent little licked fingers from touching them.
Sprinkles is just over the footbridge from Raglan Road and Morimoto Asia. The shop is open from 10 a.m. until midnight daily and the ATM is available two hours on either side. The phone number is 407-560-9192.