Laguna Beach has something seductively sweet to offer this Valentine's Day.
Casey's Cupcakes, 303 Broadway, brought to you by former MTV "Laguna Beach" sweetheart and TV personality Casey Reinhardt, will host a grand opening celebration on Monday with "Cupid's White Chocolate Cherry" cupcakes, free balloon giveaways and a live performance by the Rudie Dane Band from 3 to 7 p.m.
The fruity cake confections, made with fresh cherries, cherry-vanilla buttercream frosting, white chocolate shavings, and adorned with red candy hearts and crunchy "pearls," are a perfect way to celebrate your love of sweets, Reinhardt said.
Open 7 a.m. to 9 p.m. daily, the shop offers 12 regular cupcake flavors, a special "Flavor of the Month," and an array of other pink goodies — from cotton candy and pink lemonade to teddy bears and cupcake lip gloss.
In addition to Reinhardt's favorite — decadent dark chocolate — Luscious Lemon, Caribbean Coconut and Sassy Strawberry are a few of the cupcakes on the menu.
As the founder of C.A.S.E.Y Foundation (Children's Alliance for the Success and Education of Youth in Need), a nonprofit dedicated to helping obese children, and as someone who is on a gluten-free diet herself, Reinhardt said "healthier choices" were a top priority in opening her shop.
"We use fresh fruit and organic ingredients whenever possible," she said. "We also have the gluten-free red velvet and sugar-free coconut vanilla options that are more diet-friendly, and are working on some more healthier varieties."
Reinhardt said she developed a passion for baking when she was a little girl and would spend afternoons making cupcakes with her great-grandmother in the family's kitchen.
"I've taken her recipe for delicious cupcakes and turned it into something glamorous yet edible," she said. "My favorite part of baking is experimenting with new flavors and decorating. I want the decorations to be as delicious as the cupcakes."
The first Casey's Cupcakes opened in Riverside in 2009. Now taking a break from acting to pursue the cupcake business, Reinhardt said she hopes to expand to other locations in Orange and Los Angeles counties.
Reinhardt will challenge herself in a bakeoff in the Food Network's "Cupcake Wars," which will air Feb. 22.
For a full menu or more information about Casey's Cupcake's services, including "Create Your Own Cupcake" parties and other special events, call (949) 715-8245 or visit http://www.caseycupcake.com.