The cupcake has peaked
With the cupcake trend in full swing, one writer believes that all of the different iterations and new storefronts are leading to the bursting of the cupcake bubble. On Slate, Daniel Gross argues that cupcakes are a luxury item and all of the new options are reactionary, retro-fitted onto a pastry that is meant to be simple.
“Indeed, they are being pitched as affordable luxuries. In an age when discretionary, feel-good spending is at a nadir, cupcake bakeries are trying to persuade people to trade up from cheaper sugar-delivery vehicles (such as, say, a doughnut).”
He feels that most Americans are not in a mood to upgrade. Yet, America is all about affordable luxury. That’s why Starbucks exists today and Walmart advertises its genuine Steak House Steaks as something you can afford without a special occasion. In a culture of individuals, we want our food purchases to make us feel unique — and a fancy cupcake sits perfectly in that niche.