By Summer Seasons for PQ Monthly
I met Lisa Watson at Red Cap Garage quite a few years ago when I was up there watching Poison Waters host Drag Race. The place was packed, the lines for drinks very long and Poison was giving these girls some pretty incredible challenges. Out of the crowd, I spot this shorter beautiful woman with cupcakes in her hands, and I’m thinking, wow I wanna be friends with her because she’s got cupcakes! Poison walks over while the girls are performing and I see her talking to this woman, so I figure here’s my chance to introduce myself and get my hands on one of these cupcakes. I walk up to her, we exchange pleasantries and then she introduces me to Lisa Watson. I remember immediately being taken aback by that warm smile, but I couldn’t help the task at hand of getting my hands on one of those cupcakes. Poison announces that Lisa will be providing cupcakes, and I immediately ask if I can have one. She tells me of all the different varieties that they have, but I’m drawn to the one she said was Peanut Butter and Jelly.
When I say, it’s the best dessert I’ve ever put in my mouth that is not an understatement. It was a peanut flavored cupcake filled with Jelly inside and a peanut butter crème. As a person who loves peanut butter more than anything, I think I remember telling her it was sooooooo good I could slap my own mother, and immediately asked if I could have another. I remember taking the cupcake around to some friends I had around the bar and telling them about how good it was. It’s pretty rare that I get so passionate about food like that, but how could they take my favorite thing and turn it into and even more favorite thing. I was officially hooked on Cupcake Jones.
Throughout that year of Drag Race, I made it a point to come often in the hopes I’d run into Lisa and be able to devour one of her delicious cupcakes. I remember telling everyone I knew including my own mother about my new favorite treat, and I was on a mission to make everyone enjoy the cupcakes like I did. Eventually, after a few times, Lisa began to recognize me, and we became friends.
As the years passed and Lisa and I became greater friends, I was introduced to her husband Peter whom I immediately fell in love with as well. The more I learned about Cupcake Jones, the more I was intrigued by supporting them and their venture to have a successful business. I discovered that they had a charity donation program where they gave away a portion of their proceeds to a different charity every month. As a person who longed to be in a non-profit, I was quick to support them in their endeavors to raise awareness for all the new ones they chose to support. One of the things I admired the most was that they chose smaller ones frequently who not only could benefit from the money, but their exposure was critical too.
It became pretty clear to me that Lisa and Peter were not only willing to put their money where their mouth was, but they were willing to invest their time as well. I discovered that Lisa had signed on to Our House’s dinner series not only as a host but also chairing the efforts too. Every day I saw her working tirelessly to go to dinners, create cupcakes for them and get people involved in them too. It is because of Lisa that I went to my first Dinner Series dinner, and I had an absolute blast!
This past year I got the privilege to go with my mom to the Cupcake Jones Dinner, where we got to make our own cupcakes, be served delicious Cocktails by Dave Behrend and an excellent meal by Emily Quick. We had such a great time at the event that my mom buckled in her cupcakes after the event, because as she called them, they were “precious cargo”!
When I tell you how much love I have for Lisa and Peter, I don’t think it’s easy for anyone to understand. While I recognize that we are not Best Friends, I know that they’d do whatever was needed for me if I asked and I’d do the same for them too. Lisa and Peter are the kind of individuals everyone should strive to be, and their product is above par too! If you ever have the privilege to see Lisa’s office, you’d see the abundance of awards that she and her bakery has earned, and rightfully so. When you give back so much to the community that you love, the community definitely gives back to you.