The company was voted the number one cupcake in New York City by Daily News readers and has been given a 27 out of 30 Zagat rating. The company is even part of the chef-selected menu for VIPs at the Barclay Center, serving everyone from magazine editors to former mayor Michael Bloomberg.
And now their goal is to win over the hearts and stomachs of Glendale.
After scouting the site for a few years, the company stumbled upon the opportunity to move into a space within the heart of Atlas Park that had already been built, but had not been previously utilized.
Brooklyn Cupcake officially opened at Atlas Park two weeks ago, and they’ve already developed a loyal local following.
Carmen Rodriguez, who started the company with her sister, Gina Madera, and their cousin, Michele Caballero, compared the new space to being in heaven.
They have a storefront at 335 Union Avenue in Williamsburg, but it had been a longtime goal to open shop in Queens, especially since Atlas Park was one of their favorite locations.
It was also an important milestone for Rodriguez. Finding herself unemployed at a time when the economy was suffering, Carmen Rodriguez founded Brooklyn Cupcake out of necessity.
She realized that although many industries were taking a hit, the food industry was still doing well enough for itself. And even though she had no funds saved up, she made it work.
Friends and family began supporting her, ordering small orders for occasions like birthdays and baby showers. About three months into the new business, a company called up with an order for 1,000 cupcakes for their Christmas party.
Two weeks later, the same company asked Brooklyn Cupcake for 1,500 cupcakes for their New Year’s Eve party.
“For my family, that was a sign for them,” she said. “I’ve always thought about business and I always come to my family with all of these crazy ideas, but this was no resistance because it was all right there.”
Cupcakes, Rodriguez argued, are here to stay. Whether it’s a treat for the kids or being consumed at dessert tables for weddings, the diversity of cupcakes no longer makes it a passing fad.
The new store doesn’t bake onsite, there’s a factory between the Glendale and Williamsburg locations that produces the cupcakes, but Rodriguez hinted at a uniqueness to the Brooklyn Cupcake treats.
“We give a cultural cupcake experience,” she said, adding that some of her counterparts miss that aspect in their baking. “There are some people who make the same flavors, but it’s not the same cupcake.”
Besides classic flavors such as strawberry cheesecake and cookies and cream, most of the cupcakes pay homage to Rodriguez's Puerto Rican and Italian lineage. Her mother is Italian while her father is Puerto Rican.
Some of their cupcakes are staples, such as Guava con Queso, Tortoni, Coquito, Tiramisu, Flan de Queso and Dulce de Leche. Instead of doing typical frostings such as buttercream, the team makes their own unique cream cheese and whipped cream frostings.
Rodriguez said that they’ve noticed an increase in sales for some flavors due to a recent segment on Fox 5 featuring herself, Madera and Caballero.
“Greg Kelly gravitated towards the Rainbow Cookie cupcake, so since opening day the rainbow cookie cupcake has been flying off the shelves,” she said.
Having also been featured on the Food Network, Rodriguez said the network singlehandedly made Tres Leche the number one bestselling cupcake.
No matter what cupcake reigns supreme in the end, Rodriguez is proud of all the accomplishments she’s achieved, adding, “it’s good to see that a person can have a vision and make it happen."