Molly’s Cupcakes and Their Magic Middles

Molly’s Cupcakes and Their Magic Middles

Imagine biting into a cupcake and brownie batter oozing from the center. That’s what Molly’s Cupcakes in the West Village is all about: magic middles.  And who is Molly? The owner, Johnny Nicolaides, also known as Chief Egg Cracker, named his bakery after his favorite elementary teacher, Molly, who baked cupcakes for her students’ birthdays. He still remembers how amazing her homemade treats tasted, baked right from her kitchen in Chicago.

What makes this bakery unique is their one-of-a-kind flavors like The Ron Bennington, a chocolate cake with a peanut butter center, topped with chocolate ganache and butterscotch. More popular classics include Cake Batter, a vanilla confetti cake with raw cake batter in the middle, iced with vanilla butter cream and sprinkles, and the Cookie Monster, a vanilla chocolate chip cake filled with raw cookie dough, topped with buttercream and a mini chocolate chip cookie. These center-filled cupcakes are $3.75.  Drooling just thinking about it.

Since 2008, Molly’s, locared on Bleecker Street betweem 6th Avenue and Carmine, has become a neighborhood staple. Julie Krakov, an NYU senior, visits Molly’s every Tuesday after class. “The fact that they puts the batter inside the cupcake makes you never have to decide whether or not to eat the batter or the baked the product, because at Molly’s you can have both,” she said.

In addition to cupcakes, Molly’s also sells other fresh-baked goods. “They have these double-wide cookies,”said  Weston Barker, another regular customer. “They must be 5 or 6 inches across, and they still manage to be crispy around the edge and gooey in the middle. It’s the perfect balance that’s so hard to find in a cookie these days.”

The bakery has a very loyal base of customers. “There is a sense of community at Molly’s fostered from the regulars,” said Sierra Intoccio, an employee behind the counter. “There’s an NYU Law student who comes in for her Cookie Monster and Diet Coke every single day. An old man with a Walkman who also comes in daily. He always wants to try something new but usually ends up with his favorite, the Coconut Macadamia Nut.”

There is one woman that specifically stands out to Intoccio: her favorite customer. An elderly lady who came in every day for vegan chocolate chip cookies. At the time, they were being sold as an experiment from the bakers to see how well they did on the shelves, so they weren’t selling them daily. “She came in every night like clock work,” Intoccio said. “It always broke our hearts when we didn’t have the cookies. You would see the light her eyes fade. She did not give up even though we told her we couldn’t guarantee when they would be baked again.” After weeks of this routine, one day, the staff planned a surprise for the older woman, and the bakers baked a dozen vegan chocolate chip cookies just for her. “That night when she came in looking like she knew the disappointment was coming, we surprised her with the dozen and she was so happy. It was the sweetest thing to see. Seeing her so happy made us so happy.”

The space is cozy and smells like the perfect combination of sweet sugar, butter, and coffee. The furniture isn’t fancy or trendy, and nothing is intimidating about the medium-sized space. Next to the counter is a coffee bar, but instead of stools, there are chairs that resemble outdoor swings. In the back corner is a cabinet full of board games like Apples to Apples and Taboo for customers to enjoy. Molly’s fits well in its current location because it mimics the vibe of the neighborhood.  “The Village, in comparison to the rest of the city, is much slower and easier to pace through,” Krakov said. “At Molly’s, you can eat a cupcake and drink a cup of coffee at a leisurely pace without feeling rushed or unwelcome because of a crowd.”

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