When it comes to food, I'm pretty simple. Give me something sugary, salty, crunchy or soft - and I'm satisfied.
It wasn't until my first taste of a particular red velvet cupcake in 2007, I learned the true meaning of love - or rather - "food love."
It is hard to put into words the taste of said cupcake from Sprinkles in Beverly Hills, but rest assured it was the best cupcake - let alone dessert - I had had in my life.
At first, I assumed that this was the typical reaction one has with a good cupcake, and I continued my time in California visiting Sprinkles as often as I could - even if it meant waiting in a line that stretched down Santa Monica Boulevard. When I moved to New York a couple years later, I knew I'd miss Sprinkles but assumed other cupcakes could easily fill the void.
I missed the allure of the modern, sleek yet playful bakery. I wasted precious time figuring out flavors in a box of non-Sprinkles cupcakes because they lacked the signature "modern dot" that indicated what variety they were.
I missed the variety of flavors, like the black and white cupcake or strawberry, that rotated every day.
I missed using a "whisper word," a word found on their Facebook or Twitter page, that treated its most devoted fans receive a free cupcake.
I missed the cupcake.
It was evident to me that a trip to Sprinkles now meant more than just a delicious cupcake. Sprinkles became a part of my life in California, blended with memories of sunshine, celebrities and my closest friends.
Thankfully, Sprinkles began to expand city by city, and eventually reached the East Coast - most recently opening its first New York City outpost last week.
The cupcake continues to bring me joy with a dash of nostalgia, as if each part of sugar, flour, and chocolate is mixed with memories of the West Coast. The cupcake has also become my vice: I can never turn one down.
My friends are amazed at how I've been entranced by Sprinkles. The word "cupcake" has become synonymous with Sprinkles, and I have celebrated many achievements with one of their perfectly frosted treats. I know every step I take in life, whether a job promotion or a far-off wedding, a Sprinkles cupcake won't be far behind.
So welcome to New York, Sprinkles. Here's to celebrating the next chapters in both of our lives - one cupcake at a time.
Be sure to come back later today for an interview with Candace Nelson, the founder of Sprinkles Cupcakes.