MenuPages Chicago alerted us to the new venture by punked out pastry chef Michelle Garcia: Smash Cake, a "party place" for kids.
It's taken over what used to be Garcia's Chaos Theory Cakes, 2961 N. Lincoln, which opened just last summer as the whole funky-flavored, savory cupcake craze was heating up (or overheating, depending on how you see it).
Garcia tells MenuPages, "the entire purpose is different." The name of the space, of course, is a reference to a 1-year-old's gleeful destruction of his or her very first birthday cake (not that I'd know. My 4-year-old didn't want anything to do with the chocolate-on-chocolate cupcakes I lovingly baked for her Big One. Pushed it aside with her fingertips. There is photographic evidence. Of course, she now has my incurable sweet tooth.)
Time will tell whether the shift to kid-friendly Smash Cake was a smart move. The times I visited Chaos Theory last year, the place was empty; I felt a little sad as I picked at my fancy caprese cupcake. But Garcia -- whose Bleeding Heart Bakery is as popular as can be with schoolkids and kids-at-heart alike -- has the stroller set going for her in Smash Cake's neighborhood. And I can think at least one 4-year-old who'd be in heaven.