Strong commitment to quality and passion for the art form of baking has kept Trophy Cupcakes at the forefront of Seattle’s cupcake industry.
“I grew up baking and by the time I was eight I was super passionate about sugar, flour and butter…I became my family’s go-to dessert girl for every occasion. For some reason though, I never imagined baking could be my career so I started working at restaurants right out of high-school, and went to Bastyr University to become a Dietician.” Said owner and founder Jennifer Shea.
After graduation, she traveled to NYC and visited her first cupcake bakery.
“It took another 10 years to actually realize my dream, but during that time I worked on my recipes and took mental notes concerning bakery design and style everywhere I traveled.”
At the time Jennifer was touring as merchandise manager of a band.
“As fate would have it, I met Trophy’s angel investor (on the road). When I met my husband a few years later he immediately said, ‘We have to make this happen!’ and less than two years later we opened the first Trophy Cupcakes in Wallingford Center.” She continued, “Trophy took over ten years to plan and execute, but the time spent planning and making every detail perfect–and meeting the love of my life–has made all the difference.”
Trophy Cupcakes was voted Seattle’s Best Cupcake Shop in both 2010 and 2011.
Their largest praise came less than one year after opening when they were invited to appear on The Martha Stewart Show. Jennifer baked her Chocolate Graham Cracker with toasted marshmallow cupcake. Trophy had been busy since day one, but after the Martha show aired they found a new definition for the word.
“We literally could not bake fast enough to keep our shelves stocked. Our original plan did not include strategies for handling that type of extreme growth so we really had to scramble to keep up.”
Trophy Cupcakes is a well received part of Seattle’s versatile food and restaurant scene, which is Jennifer’s favorite aspects of the city. She lists Sitka and Spruce, The Walrus and the Carpenter, Bottlehouse, and Marjorie as some of the best spots. She also loves the sheer beauty of Seattle, and states it is “truly breathtaking; we are lucky to live in such a gorgeous city.”
European chocolate, Madagascar Bourbon vanilla, local sweet cream butter and hand-piped butter cream are among the fine ingredients that contribute to Trophy’s status as one of Seattle’s favorites. Some of their unique flavors include Snickerdoodle, Peanut Butter and Jelly, Salted Caramel, and Samoa (a small gourmet cake version of the revered Girl Scout cookie). Around St. Patrick’s Day they offer a Guiness Stout cupcake with Irish Cream Buttercream. Trophy also makes standards like Chocolate Vanilla, Red Velvet, and Triple Chocolate, all of which are baked and delivered to their Wallingford, University District, and Bellevue locations daily.