The cake wore red velvet

#200 Eat red velvet cake at Wolves, the newest coffee spot on Corlett Drive. Red velvet cake comes with a history and a pedigree. It was a signature dessert at New York’s legendary Waldorf Astoria Hotel in the 1920s (or at least someone updating the post on Wikipedia thought so) and “According to a common urban legend a woman once asked for the recipe for the cake, and was billed a large amount. Indignant, she spread the recipe in a chain letter.”

The Red Velvet cake from Wolves

It also had a starring role in the 1989 hit movie when Julia Roberts was but a child – Steel Magnolias. In the movie the cake arrived in the shape of an armadillo – a little short on looking appetising.
The first time I tasted such a thing was in Los Angeles at its famous cupcake bakery Sprinkles sometime last year. The taste and look of it was unmistakeable – a dense, moist cake coloured bright red with a cream cheese icing. Thinking back that was one lucky armadillo.
And so it was to Wolves on Saturday in search of a cappuccino – led by the sign outside the door that said something about beating Edwin at Checkers to get a free one. Turns out Edwin is an old compadre who we last saw in Parktown North where he ably managed the pavement crowd through Saturday morning breakfasts.

Happy small people at Wolves

He has relocated from there bringing William the barrista with him – and together they make a fine pair and serve a great cappuccino. Breakfast was delicious – a muesli, yoghurt and fruit compote and a feta and tomato tart for the more grown up among us. The portions looked slim, but were really sufficient and tasty, and dessert was even better.
Wolves is bohemian in its look. It has an eclectic and retro-mix of soft colours and furniture and an interesting array of amusements. The hit of the morning was the discovery of a Monopoly board amid the games laid out on a shelf and the 9-year-old and his 9-year-old friend took up the seats at a table by the window with hot chocolate and cupcakes and we had to beg them to leave. As the morning progressed they attracted other small people who wanted to join in the game.
I have been back since – and tried hard to resist the red velvet cake, but frankly it is the stuff that legends are made of.

Edwin, (front) the man you need to play checkers against. William is making coffee

* Wolves also has free wi-fi. Wolves is at Shop 4, 3 Corlett Drive, Illovo, Johannesburg.
011 447 2360 (a few doors down from Parea restaurant)

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