Yes, it’s true: there is a problem with Hubig’s mini king cake. It pains me to say it because (a) I love Hubig’s pies, and (b) I love the smell of the Hubig’s factory, which sits just around the corner from my house. But love and geographic proximity cannot mask the fact that something is deeply wrong with this thing.
As I see it, the problems, they are three:
1. The Hubig’s mini king cake has the texture of a bialy, or possibly a yeast roll: powdery and wheat-like. This is confusing to king cake consumers expecting hunks of dough glued to a carry-out box with pounds of sugary-sweet frosting.
2. The Hubig’s mini king cake looks kind of a like a bagel — granted, a bagel covered in goop and decorated with purple, green, and gold hamster pellets, but still: bagelish. It is a visual conundrum of sweet and savory. (Those of you who eat blueberry and fruity bagels may think this sounds delicious, but remember: blueberry and fruity bagels are a travesty not technically part of the bagel family. Well, not my bagel family.) It is the sort of thing that M. C. Escher might’ve created if he’d become a pastry chef and not an overachieving mathlete-cum-sketch artist.
3. The Hubig’s mini king cake is not as delicious as I want it to be. It doesn’t taste like a bialy or a bagel (thankfully), it is sweet, and yet…. Well, do you remember McKenzie’s king cakes? The “traditional” ones? To me, they tasted like three-day-old cinnamon buns thrown in a blender with some cardboard, then baked into a hard, rubbery loaf. The Hubig’s king cake is not that bad, but it is definitely not good.
Now, I admit, I may have been expecting too much. When I first heard about Hubig’s king cakes, I envisioned a pint-sized version of a Hubig’s pie, which, for the uninitiated, is kind of like a fruit pie, but magnified. It is like the Bugatti Veyron of fruit pies. It is the Balenciaga of convenience store pastry. It is like a tardis filled with passion fruit and served piping hot. It is THAT GOOD. The mini king cake, she is not. Not yet, anyway.
Back to the drawing board.