Today, we sat down with Leslie Feinberg (right), whom, along with Brook Siem, co-owns Prohibition Bakery. Let's learn more about her story!
Please tell us a little bit about how you got started on your cupcake journey!
Well, the short answer is s bartender/baker and chef walk into a bakery…. The long answer requires a few beers to aid in the telling.
Prohibition Bakery is such a fun concept! How did you come up with the idea of making boozy cupcakes?
We wanted to take an idea that had been done six ways from sideways, and find a whole new way to approach it. Plus, it’s New York’s two favorite things!
How did you come up with the flavor combinations, and what’s your personal favorite?
The flavor combinations are largely based on classic cocktails, so we treat the cake as the mixer, and then fill and frost with the appropriate booze, add a cute little garnish, and voila!
Tell us a little about your cookbook.
The cookbook is so beautiful, which I can say because I had nothing to do with the actual design besides saying “YES!” It’s 50 boozy cupcake recipes, along with boozy filling recipes (ganache, caramel, jam, etc) and 9 cocktail recipes.
When you are not creating inventive cupcakes, what's the favorite thing you like to bake?
I’m kind of known for my chocolate chip cookies. I bake them a lot, and am always working on new variations. I also bake a lot of breads, and like to experiment with home-baking things you would buy in a store, like cheezits or oreos.
What’s your favorite New York guilty pleasure?
Mr. Softy. Really, any ice cream, but my boyfriend and I always get a Mr. Softy swirl with rainbow and chocolate sprinkles (called A TwoFace) when we’re out walking in spring and summer. If one of us gets on without the other present, we joke that we “cheated.”
What's your favorite restaurant in NYC?
There are so many incredible restaurants in New York, it would be impossible to pick a favorite. That being said, nothing makes me quite as happy as a cold McSorley’s Dark, and order of fries and a burger from Corner Bistro.
Any fun customer stories to share?
Oooooh, so many. There’ve been super awkward Twinder dates, there’s the occasional celebrity spotting, our favorite punk regulars who made us “cupcakes against fascism” patches, and of course there was the adorable old woman who came in with her granddaughter, and upon seeing that we were serving a cupcake called The Basic Bitch (this is last summer) proudly exclaimed, “That’s me! I’m a basic bitch!” Her granddaughter and I just about died laughing.