Trinis win Food Network’s ‘Cupcake Wars’

Sporting red, black and white garments and beaming smiles, the brother and sister team of Tim and Winnette McIntosh celebrated their victory on popular Food Network programme, Cupcake Wars last Sunday, as Nigel Telesford reports for Trinidad’s Express.

The final episode showcasing their victory aired on Sunday. Winning the judges’ approval and racing past the first round, the siblings were the only contestants to use all five required ingredients in their cake as they made a fresh ginger five-spice cupcake with red-bean filling, topped with lychee butter-cream frosting and a ginger caramel drizzle. Speaking to the Express from their home in Washington DC, the siblings expressed great pride and joy in their win.

“It’s an amazing feeling to have won,” said Tim, “because since we opened our store, we’ve had so many people tell us that we make the best cupcakes in DC and now it’s validated and almost like we have the best cakes in the entire USA.”

During the second round of the competition, the pair was unable to complete the topping for their three cupcakes and the judges expressed great disappointment since they felt that the flavours were incredible. Judge, Candace Nelsen remarked: “I was in heaven eating this plate.”

Although their cupcakes were incomplete, the judges were won over by the taste and sent them on to the third round. Amazingly, Tim explained that their stint on the show almost did not happen because they had applied too late. He said: “One day a blogger came in to do a profile on us, we chatted and then the next day she shot me an email saying that I wasn’t the typical baker and I had a personality that would be good for the show. She sent me a casting-call link for Cupcake Wars and my sister and I entered. We got an immediate call back from the casting director saying that the deadline had actually passed, but they liked our profile so much that they would allow us to go on to the next stage of casting.”

Determined to represent Trinidad and Tobago to the fullest, the duo said they believed their cosmopolitan upbringing enabled them to create amazing flavour combinations and excel in the competition.

“We definitely went on the show and represented Trinidad well,” said Tim, “I think because Trinidad is such a melting pot of cultures and particularly with regard to food as well, we have a unique perspective on flavour combinations. Just as a plethora of different ethnic groups co-exist in Trinidad, we approach our desserts from the stance that multiple flavours can abound and thrive in one plate. Having that perspective definitely helped on the show.”

The final episode showed the siblings’ Sweet Lobby storefront in Washington DC. During the third and final round of the competition, the McIntoshs decided to showcase 1,000 cupcakes on a Chinese pagoda display with a dragon design to celebrate the Year of the Dragon. The cupcakes were topped with mini paper lanterns, a red fire-breathing dragon and a frosting made to resemble noodles and topped with sesame sticks mimicking chopsticks.

Needless to say, their creative display and superbly flavoured cupcakes stole the show and put yet another Trinidadian flag on winner’s row.

For the original report go to

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