Friends inject personality, care in flavorful cupcakes - WTRF 7 News Sports Weather - Wheeling Steubenville

Friends inject personality, care in flavorful cupcakes

Posted: Updated:
Janet Williams, left, and Anna Carrier dish out 80 variations of cupcakes for their customers. Janet Williams, left, and Anna Carrier dish out 80 variations of cupcakes for their customers.
  • BusinessBusinessMore>>

  • West Virginia University Children's Hospital Breaks Ground on New Expansion

    West Virginia University Children's Hospital Breaks Ground on New Expansion

    Tuesday, September 16 2014 10:48 AM EDT2014-09-16 14:48:24 GMT
    Monday marked the new beginning for the West Virginia University Children's Hospital. The hospital is expanding its walls to meet the growing needs of the community.
    Monday marked the new beginning for the West Virginia University Children's Hospital. The hospital is expanding its walls to meet the growing needs of the community.
  • Wayne Lumber sawmill faces $85K penalty for OSHA safety and health violations

    Wayne Lumber sawmill faces $85K penalty for OSHA safety and health violations

    Monday, September 15 2014 11:07 AM EDT2014-09-15 15:07:16 GMT
    Wayne Lumber and Mulch Inc. faces $85,080 in proposed penalties for safety and health hazards at its sawmill in Wayne, West Virginia following two investigations by the U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration.
    Wayne Lumber and Mulch Inc. faces $85,080 in proposed penalties for safety and health hazards at its sawmill in Wayne, West Virginia following two investigations by the U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration.
  • ASBDC to honor small business coach

    ASBDC to honor small business coach

    Sunday, September 14 2014 4:00 PM EDT2014-09-14 20:00:15 GMT
    America's Small Business Development Centers recently announced James Epling has been selected as the West Virginia 2014 State Star. The ASBDC State Star honors outstanding employees from Small Business Development Centers.
    America's Small Business Development Centers recently announced James Epling has been selected as the West Virginia 2014 State Star. The ASBDC State Star honors outstanding employees from Small Business Development Centers.

Reading the menu at The Cupcakerie in Morgantown from top to bottom isn’t something you can do in a rush.

Owners Anna Carrier and Janet Williams have come up with 80 variations on the all-American treat, all of them described in mouth-watering detail, right down to their delicately flavored icings and the sprinkles, chocolate shavings or edible pearls applied as accents.

None of them start with a box mix.

“We make everything from scratch,” Carrier said. “We make all our batter by the vat, in such large amounts it probably takes us close to an hour and 45 minutes.

“You can never make batter without having to stop and answer the phone or talk to a customer.”

Carrier, a lawyer, and Williams, a paralegal, had met at Hamstead, Williams & Shook, an old, well-respected law firm in Morgantown. Williams’ husband, Jacques, is one of its principals, and she herself has worked there for years. Carrier had joined them in 2007.

“I think Anna and I became friends because she liked to cook, she liked to bake and pair wines, just as I did,” Williams said. “When she decided to leave her job, that’s when we decided to go into business.”

At first, they worked out of a kitchen in the Hamstead, Williams & Shook building and used the staff there as taste-testers. The pair planned to load their cupcakes onto a cart and sell them to college students, but the sweets were such a hit, they couldn’t keep the cart stocked. Then, in March 2011, the duo landed their first corporate client.

Six months later they opened for business in their own storefront — a century-old building on Willey Street.

“I think we’re both very creative, that’s why we need this,” Williams said. “I think we needed to exercise the other side of our brains. Any time we’re out running errands we’ll call each other with ideas.”

Some of their best flavor pairings have come from strolls through the aisles of their favorite grocery store.

“We bake all day, every day,” Williams said. “But it’s what we enjoy doing. It doesn’t feel like work.”

They bake in a range of sizes — from bite-sized minis to traditional and jumbos, with a super-sized version for special events that’s meant to be shared. They try to keep 12-14 varieties in stock on any given day, including perennial favorites, such as their “Red Carpet Red Velvet,” “P’Nutty for Chocolate,” “Very Vanilla” and “Loco Cocoa,” though some days there’s a bit of “baker’s choice” involved in their daily flavor selections. If customers want a particular variety or size, the partners are more than happy to oblige.

The two of them also handle everything from scrubbing floors to waiting on customers.

“It’s the life of a small business owner,” Williams said. “And on Saturday mornings you’ll find the two of us in the kitchen, doing what we like to do — baking and decorating cupcakes” for weddings, reunions and other special occasions. Williams said they’ve arranged deliveries to customers with special events as far away as Chicago, Buffalo and New York.

Their menu is divided into collections — the “original” flavors they’ve served up since they opened, their “pink” collection, Mountaineer-themed flavors, candy influenced selections, a “21” collection flavored with adult beverages, fruit-inspired choices and what they call their “decadent dessert collection,” seven ultra-rich creations heavy on chocolate, creams, nuts and frostings.

All have names, many of them speaking to their taste in music: Strawberry Fields Forever (French vanilla cake swirled with a sweet strawberry puree, topped with creamy strawberry butter cream and sprinkled with pretty pink edible pearls), A Hard Day’s Night (French vanilla cake, topped with luscious chocolate butter cream and sprinkled with rich dark chocolate shavings) and its alter-ego, A Hard Night’s Day (rich chocolate cake, topped with creamy vanilla butter cream and sprinkled with French dark chocolate shavings).

Then there’s the John Lemmon (French vanilla cake accented with a splash of fresh lemon juice, topped with lemon-infused vanilla butter cream and sprinkled with yellow sugar pearls) and The Yoko Ono (a moist vanilla cake with lemon filling, finished with their signature lemon-infused butter cream icing.)

And that’s just the tip of the flavor iceberg.

“We started trying to inject a little bit of ourselves into everything we do,” Williams said. “You can walk in our store and look around and you’ll pretty much know me and know Anna — we’re both very girly, we share the same taste in music and coffee, we have the same sense of humor.

“You can come in here and buy napkins, plates, cards and candles and walk out of here with everything you’ll need for a birthday party. And we love our Mountaineers; there will always be Mountaineer stuff in here.”