Side dish: A cupcake shop with "personality" 

Get your lashes

Whipped Cupcakery (igotwhipped.com) joined the local cupcake scene last week. And with the catchphrase "Get whipped" and a focus on "personalities" instead of "standard flavors," it's clear owner Erin Smith has an idea of how to set herself apart.

Some personality options: Baby Bump (vanilla with a whole strawberry baked inside, and pink or blue vanilla butter cream), Hot Flash (espresso with cinnamon butter cream) and Not So Dumb Blond (banana with vanilla butter cream). And if you want a mixed dozen, well, Smith calls that "split or multiple personalities."

Naughtiness and obvious female-targeted branding aside, Smith, a media/marketing rep outside her baker's apron, says she's studied the cupcake trend and believes in its potential to take on the wedding-cake industry, for one. She grew up around a mother, aunt and grandmother who all made wedding cakes, but with cupcakes, she aims to twist the traditional. For example, rather than placing orange rind in a chocolate cupcake, her chocolate "vamp" features a blood orange butter cream frosting.

Whipped's cupcakes are only available by pre-order for delivery, though a retail front is envisioned for next year.

Reviving the Villa

Try to keep up with this one.

Chris and Kerri Bohler ran Palmer Lake's B&E Filling Station for 14 years, then sold it in early 2010. (Later, it became Folie à Deux, which has since closed.) Chris returned to cooking five months ago as chef at Monument's Fusion World Cuisine, but on Oct. 1, that closed, too. (The owner returned to China.)

Now, the Bohlers are reopening The Villa (75 S. Hwy. 105, Palmer Lake, 481-2222). The site had most recently been La Zingara (formerly a Paravicini's extension), but in September, that business moved and became La Zingara Italian Restaurant at Gleneagle (lazingaraatgleneagle.com).

The Villa pays homage to a restaurant of the same name, open from 1980 to 2000, where Chris and Kerri worked and met and Chris played chef from '86 to '93. That name was pared down from Roman Villa, which was the name of the original eatery that opened in 1956; yes, that family was friends with today's Roman Villa family on North Nevada Avenue.

So: The Bohlers are renewing "simple, homemade Italian" cuisine at 75 S. Hwy. 105, but with a little flair: think duck ravioli, pork osso buco and nightly seafood specials. Chris says with a capacity of 120, a spacious deck and a liquor license that includes the whole property, he wants to also make The Villa into a wedding and live music venue. It should be open sometime between Oct. 22 and 24.


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