SEATTLE, Washington - In what is sure to be one step in an inevitable march through America's highly regarded cupcakes, I visited baked in Red Hook, Brooklyn this week to try the Sweet and Salty cupcake. It was only available in cake-slice form at the time so I got that.
The cake is good, but be advised, this is a way-out-of-the-way neighborhood that involves a subway ride to the Smith & 9th stop on the F train (the station is so high in the air it might qualify as geosynchronous orbit) and then hopping a bus into Red Hook. So I'll detour into a quick provincialism editorial:
I got off the bus right outside the bakery, and there was no corresponding stop for the same bus across the street, so I asked the server where to grab the bus to get back to the Smith & 9th stop. She didn't know. I simply assume, when someone lives or works in a way-out 'hood in New York, their first order of business is figuring out the transportation options to get to the more relevant places. It was almost inconceivable to me that anyone in Red Hook would not know the answer to this question immediately. The other customers informed me of where to get the bus (one block away). Does this server (who seemed nice, I'm not bashing her) never stray out of this tiny, dumpy neighborhood? Maybe she just walks to the subway, but it looks to be about a mile. It's also possible that if she needs to hop a subway, she first takes the B61 bus that goes to downtown Brooklyn (where there are many more subway options that just the F train). I dunno.
update: Maybe she drives? You get it in your head that people in NYC don't get around by car, but Red Hook is so out-there that there was plenty of parking. Perhaps I'm the provincialist, not her or the other inhabitants of Red Hook.