Have you seen that new program on the Food Network called “Cupcake Wars?” I know. The show’s name does sound kinda scary. Not to worry, there is absolutely no blowing up of cupcakes involved. Actually, that would probably be a sin worthy of having to go to confession, not to mention extremely messy. Basically, “Cupcake Wars” is another one of those food reality shows. Each episode, so far anyway, involves four gourmet cupcake bakers from various parts of the country and some expert cupcake judges. Cupcake judge … mmm … where do I sign up for that sweet job? Anyway, bakers create their tastiest cupcakes under extreme pressure. Oh, and the competition often involves some unusual ingredients the average Betty or Bob would probably not elect to stir into cupcake batter. By the end of the show someone wins a large bucket full of cash and instant fame. Anyway, it’s my favorite new show about my new favorite dessert. I remember there was this one episode of “Cupcake Wars” that was won by a vegan baker. Now I don’t have a clue how ya make cupcakes the vegan way but they musta’ tasted really good. The judges absolutely adored them. The obvious trickle of drool running down one of the judge’s chins was a dead giveaway. The cupcake boutique owner that competed during that episode was just the most adorable young lady. Her name was Chloe and, I swear, she looks just like Ricky’s lovely girlfriend, Kate. She was tall, slim, with long, dark brown hair and light brown eyes. She also had the brightest smile that obviously required the maximum number of years in braces. Did I mention that the Frantz family just recently got really super-charged over cupcakes? It happened on Father’s Day. Our oldest kiddo lives in Houston and volunteered to bring dessert that Sunday in June. “How about I bring cupcakes from Crave?” said Katie, while chatting with her dad over the phone shortly before her dad’s big day. I could see by that faraway look in his right eyeball that his daughter had struck a pleasant nerve. Rick smiled rather largely exposing that sensitive sweet tooth of his and it was a done deal. As it turned out hubby was already acquainted with Crave cupcakes which is located in Uptown Park. His boss, Tom, had brought a box of the delectable treats in all different flavors to the office. I recall Rick musta’ mentioned the coconut cupcake he ate at least 30 times that night. I almost smacked him with a rolled up magazine when the “coconut” rant lasted well into the next morning. “Cupcakes sound awesome. How about bringing a dozen?” Rick said all excited to our daughter. “Whoa howdy. That is way too many cupcakes. There are only five of us. Tell Katie to bring eight. And be sure at least one of them is coconut,” I quickly retorted. In other important cupcake news, did you notice that Sprinkles Cupcakes recently opened in Houston’s very own Highland Village Shopping Center? Yep, the opening even made the daily rag. The only reason that this could be remotely noteworthy is Katie and I had a date last week to check Sprinkles out. The cupcake boutique is credited with beginning the sweet craze in Beverly Hills years ago, so naturally we wanted to critique their wares. Our date was also the day before Katie had her wisdom teeth removed. Katie was a tad nervous but I couldn’t think of a better bribe than dinner, dessert and volunteering to be there to pass her the ice pack and fetch buckets of pudding and mashed potatoes. “We’ll make this fun. First we have a nice dinner to take your mind off your date with dental destiny tomorrow. For dessert, we pay a visit to Sprinkles Cupcakes and see how they rate against Crave,” I said. At least that was our plan. After a leisurely dinner at Tiny Boxwoods, we headed down the road just a tad for dessert. As it turned out, Sprinkles locks their doors up tight every night at 7 p.m. We were too late. So we raced over to Crave, they close at 8 p.m., and purchased their last two delectable cupcakes. I had their awesome strawberry cupcake. Katie had the delicious chocolate. The moral of the story is if you are “Crave”ing cupcakes and want them with “Sprinkles,” eat the dessert course first … and let me know if you crave the newest craze! Dixie Frantz is a long-time Kingwood resident and newspaper columnist since 1996. E-mail Dixie with your comments at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

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