I’m in love. With a cake. Red velvet to be exact.
What is red velvet, you may ask. Is it chocolate? Why is it red? What’s that white stuff on top? Does it taste like strawberries?
Well, long story cut short – no, it’s not chocolate. Nor is it strawberry (the audacity to even think that!). And it’s red because you put red food colouring (EDIT: yes, or boiled beets too but it doesn’t really change the taste IMO. It’s just like adding food colouring, but way more troublesome if you ask me.) into the mix. Simple as that. The red tint of the cake really has nothing to do with strawberries, cranberries and any other damn berry.
Contrary to common notion however, red velvet is not chocolate with red food colouring. It is a delicate mix of chocolate and vanilla flavouring, and the cakes are often paired with cream cheese frosting.
We checked out a couple of – okay okay, 40 to be exact (I’m really obsessed with red velvet yes I am) – places in search of THE perfect red velvet treat and this is the list we’ve come up with.
BEST RED VELVET CAKE: Room For Dessert
Blk 261 Waterloo Street, #01-42 Waterloo Centre, Singapore 180261 Moved to 62 Somme Road#01-02, Singapore 207877 (behind City Square Mall)
Tel: +65 63377 637
Tucked away in a quiet corner of Waterloo Center, Room For Dessert is a cute bakery that has a decent selection of tasty treats. More importantly though, they have an excellent red velvet cake. Although the cake itself is not as moist as I’d like, the red velvet flavour is close to perfect. The cream cheese frosting is like a little piece of heaven, and complements the cake well. The bakery also does customized cakes for a relatively reasonable price, so you might want to consider it the next time you want to earn brownie points for your boss’s birthday (no pun intended).
BEST RED VELVET ICE CREAM: Marble Slab Creamery
Outlets island-wide, including Bugis + #05-02, Central #01-27, JCUBE #04-18 and Junction 8 #02-52. Visit their website for more information on all their outlets.
If you don’t know what red velvet tastes like, you need to try the ice cream version at Marble Slab Creamery. Although the parlour boasts a wide selection of ice cream flavours, I always end up with the red velvet because it’s just too good to resist. The ice cream is creamy and smooth (calories? what calories?) and the chocolate-vanilla combination is a perfect ten – exactly what red velvet should taste like. My favourite mix-in is the Lotus caramel biscuits or the graham crackers. A word of advice – the ice cream melts pretty fast, so you might want to eat it as quick as you can. Not that you’d have any trouble though.
BEST RED VELVET CUPCAKE: ?
Unfortunately, this category remains empty. Because sadly, we haven’t found a worthy contender yet. And we’d rather not list a red velvet cupcake that’s only sub-par, just for the sake of having one in this category. I have morals, ya’ll.
Other Places We Checked Out
FOR RED VELVET CAKE
Cedele: Strangely inconsistent across a few outlets that we checked out. E.g. The one at Millenia Walk seemed to have a completely different red velvet cake from the outlet at Changi Airport. The cake was a tad bit dry, but the flavour was quite alright.
The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf: The red velvet cake didn’t taste anything like red velvet (or even chocolate). We’ll stick to the coffee instead.
O’Cofee Club: Just…no.
Cold Stone Creamery: This was an ice cream cake – strawberry ice cream with red velvet cake. A strange combination in our opinion (the strawberry ice cream flavor overpowers the red velvet cake flavor), but nevertheless, still a pretty good treat. We wish they would make a red velvet cake with red velvet ice cream though.
Dean & Deluca: Our second favourite cake of the ones we’ve tried. The cake was moist, cream cheese was perfect and the red velvet flavour hit the mark (albeit a bit too sweet). Unfortunately, it only seems to be available on certain days. Either that or it sells out really fast.
Epicurious: The red velvet cake here didn’t leave much of an impression.
Food For Thought: The cake was prettily decorated with white chocolate shavings on top of the cream cheese, but we felt it was a tad bit too sweet for our liking. Also, the red velvet flavour just wasn’t quite there.
High Society: Didn’t taste like red velvet.
Jones The Grocer: Good cake but didn’t have a red velvet flavour.
Maison Ikkoku: This was an interesting cafe near Haji Lane, with a decent selection of pastries, sandwiches and coffee. The cream cheese frosting was excellent, but the red velvet flavour was lacking.
NYDC: The cream cheese was fine, but the cake was pretty meh.
Once Upon a Milkshake: We tried this one on a whim, after walking past its outlet at ION Orchard. While the red velvet cake didn’t really impress us, the Nutty Peanut Butter milkshake really hit the spot.
Oriole Coffee: Good cream cheese but the red velvet flavour wasn’t very strong.
Pique Nique: The brainchild of Chef Pang Kok Keong (the same guy behind popular French cafe Antoinette), this American-style cafe had a pretty impressive range of desserts. However, the red velvet cake seemed to be a strangely neon shade of red. Taste-wise, it was like a regular vanilla cake.
Jams Cafe: This used to be the cafe at Prologue at ION Orchard, but the last time we checked, it was closed for good. The red velvet cake here didn’t leave much of an impression though.
The American Club: Not bad, but the red velvet flavour wasn’t very strong.
The Red Velvet: We were pretty excited about this one, after seeing its fancy website with amazing photos of red velvet cakes. Unfortunately, we found the Classic Red Velvet cake a bit too dry and it didn’t taste like red velvet. It scores really high for presentation though!
FOR RED VELVET CUPCAKES
black@Triple One Somerset: The cupcake was moist and the cream cheese was perfect, but we wish the red velvet flavour was stronger.
Baked By Lace: The cupcake was a bit dry, and the red velvet flavour tasted more like chocolate.
Chalk Farm: Definitely the place for classy, elegant cakes with a hint of British influence, Chalk Farm has an impressive (and tasty) selection of cupcakes. While the cupcakes had the right consistency (and looked too pretty too eat!), the red velvet flavour wasn’t as strong as we’d hoped. The chocolate cupcakes are to die for though.
Da Paolo: The red velvet cupcake was a bit too dry and crumbly for our liking.
dessert.cup: Pretty cupcakes, but the red velvet flavour just didn’t hit the spot for us.
The Marmalade Pantry: While The Marmalade Pantry has a pretty decent selection of delectable desserts and cupcakes, we wish they wouldn’t put coconut shavings on top of their red velvet cupcakes.
Plain Vanilla: We took some time to find this place, which is tucked away on the second floor of one of the old buildings at Holland Village. The cupcakes were moist and fluffy, but we felt that the red velvet flavour wasn’t there.
Room For Dessert: While we love the red velvet cake here, the red velvet cupcakes here were strangely not as good as we’d hoped. They were a bit too hard and dry.
Shiberty’s Sweets: The consistency of the cupcake was alright, but the red velvet flavour just wasn’t there.
Smitten Coffee and Tea Bar: Didn’t really hit home with us.
Starbucks: The cupcake was a bit too dry, and it tasted more like a chocolate cake than anything else. We’ll stick to the Frappuccinos here instead.
Strangers’ Reunion: Tucked away in a corner of Kampong Bahru road, this seemed to be one of those cool, underground cafes that only hip people in-the-know visit. In fact, we nearly missed the entrance. While the red velvet cupcake didn’t leave much of an impression, the waffle with fruit slices was pretty good.
The Red Velvet: We also ordered the Signature Red Velvet cupcakes from here (we really love our red velvet okay?), but unfortunately, they were a bit too dry and didn’t have the right red velvet flavor.
Twelve Cupcakes: We can see why this cute cupcake cafe has become so popular. The cupcakes are not only pretty, but are moist and flavourful as well. However, the red velvet cupcake tasted more like a light chocolate one.
Whips Cupcakes: Located in Tanjong Pagar, this cupcake cafe had a pretty wide selection of regular-sized and mini cupcakes. The cupcake was moist and the cream cheese was good, but we felt that the red velvet flavour just wasn’t strong enough.
FOR RED VELVET ICE CREAM AND FROZEN YOGURT
Berrylite: Unfortunately, this tasted more like chocolate.
Maggie Moo’s: Excellent red velvet flavour, but we wish they didn’t have brownie bits mixed in because it takes away from the flavour.
Sogurt: A tad bit watery and the red velvet frozen yogurt tasted more chocolatey than anything else.
Swirl Art: We were excited when we found out that they launched a red velvet froyo flavour, because their caramel and peanut butter flavours are to die for. The red velvet flavour tasted like chocolate though.
Tuttie Frutti Froyo: After trawling in the heat on a sunny Saturday afternoon, we finally got to this place (we went to the one at Arab street, which by the way, has really limited parking). Although the frozen treat cooled us down, we found the red velvet flavour a bit too similar to chocolate.
Know any Red Velvet goodies that should be on this list? Send us your suggestions. We’ll be eternally grateful.