Cupcake Wars: Love, Wine, Flowers, Chocolate!

by in Shows, February 9th, 2011
Marilyn's winning cupcakes

Cupcake Wars judge Candace Nelson is the founder and pastry chef of Sprinkles Cupcakes, the world’s first cupcake bakery. She joins us on the FN Dish each week to recap all the sweet details of the competition from her seat at the judges’ table. Here’s what she had to say about last night’s episode, Valentine’s Day.

I love Valentine’s Day. A holiday devoted to love, wine, flowers and CHOCOLATE seems just too good to be true. And what could be sweeter than a Valentine’s Day episode of Cupcake Wars devoted to just those themes, plus a little cheese? Add Fabio as guest judge and you’ve got the perfect, romantic setting for our contestants to bake their hearts out!

Fabio joined Candace and Florian as guest judge for this episode.

And so they did. Both Marilyn and Bill impressed me from the start. Marilyn with her complex yet delicate cupcake of white wine, pineapple, ginger, goat cheese and sugared almonds… and Bill with his simple and yummy chocolate-Pinot Noir with goat cheese buttercream. But Krista ran into trouble in round one. She had trepidation about her cupcake because she doesn’t drink and was unfamiliar with the challenge ingredients, but what sent her home was a technical baking issue: The cake was missing body and literally sunk under the weight of the frosting.

In this Valentine's-themed episode, Marilyn "nailed the theme in addition to baking exceptional cupcakes all day," says Candace.

In round two, Nicole also ran into baking issues with two out of three of her cupcakes. You could see on her face that she was not proud of her plate and it’s a shame. Bill impressed us yet again with simple perfection and Marilyn with her complex flavors — both sailed through to the final round. In round three, Marilyn made a “chocolate box” display complete with stenciled hearts and a display of wine glasses and cheese — a romantic and feminine display perfect for Valentine’s Day. Bill made a very clean and lovely display with a wine cork and shelves made of hearts, however the wine theme took center stage over the romance. It was a tight race but ultimately Marilyn nailed the theme in addition to baking exceptional cupcakes all day.

Bake up a batch of Marilyn’s winning Chocolate Cupcakes with Chocolate Mascarpone Filling and Zinfandel Buttercream and check out for more about Cupcake Wars, plus dozens of our best cupcake recipes.

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Comments (20)

  1. klims says:

    Bobby, needs to be a little more humble, and so do some of the others who think they are better thaan then viewers!!

  2. Erin says:

    I was secretly rooting for Bill, since I'm from Omaha, NE. Next time I'm visiting family I will have to make a stop at Jones Bros.

    Great episode!

  3. rccgeo says:

    I love, love, love this show, but could the producers maybe consult a food science expert and incorporate a little sanitary food handling rules into the show. It makes me cringe to see all the bakers running around with their long hair flowing. Although all of the cupcakes in this episode looked scrumptious, it was quite a bit off putting seeing them shove the fillings into the cupcakes with their fingers. Could they at least wear gloves?

    • RPCindy says:

      I agree! and it's not just limited to Cupcake Wars. I see it on the Challenge program and other shows as well: women with their hair all over the place. How many of these masterpieces have hair in them??

      • tami says:

        I agree as well. In any food prep establishment, arent they supposed to wear hair nets or at least have the hair pulled back in a ponytail?? It kind of disgusts me to see it hanging loose like that.

  4. Marie says:

    I absolutely love watching Cupcake Wars! It has inspired me to be more creative with my cake business and cupcake designs. Never knew cupcakes could be so exciting! A.Knipp

  5. BRW says:

    I hear the cast and crew eat the losing 1000 cupcakes…is that true? If so, why not donate them to a school, church or homeless shelter?

  6. PktChg says:

    Her's looked like shit on the display. There was batter and frosting on the outside of the cupcakes and MANY of them , the topping was oozing off. Bill's display was so much more presentable.

  7. Paula says:

    I'm with BRW…what happens to the losing 1000 cupcakes?

  8. We love watching Cupcake Wars! Our cupcakes aren't as inventive as the ones featured on the show, but they do taste good! Check out our Sour Cream Chocolate Cupcakes on our blog at…!

  9. Ibinabo says:

    What lovely treats you have got there I hope its for free.

  10. gladys says:

    Honesty I have seen, is definately not one of the judges strong points on this show and after tonight, I will never , ever, watch thisshow again because I have truly seen and watched those that should have won, be sent home and fairness is not one of the judges factors at all .

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