You can find Sweet Vinyl Bakeshop owner Melissa Diaz blasting 80s metal rock (often Depeche Mode) as she bakes decadent creations infused with beer and boozy delights. Diaz collaborates with independent breweries and distilleries across Salt Lake City, Utah pairing unique cupcakes with the latest local craft releases.
After a decade of bartending from Las Vegas to Salt Lake, Diaz now concocts her cupcakes like a new cocktail. Her creative juices start to flow as she gets insider tips from area brewmasters and bartenders on the flavor profile of that week’s craft beer release. She usually has 24 hours to smell and taste the newly canned brew, get the ingredients and flip it all into her latest mouth-watering masterpiece.
According to Diaz, the batter, frosting and toppings provide more playing field for creative experimentation, and are the perfect bite-sized indulgence “that pack a flavor punch” — but without the guilt of an entire cake
Her creations come in many flavors, with new recipes each week. Margarita and Old Fashioned cupcakes. Saint Paddy’s mint chocolate chip topped with golden coins. Absinthe Witchy cupcakes for Holystone Distillery’s Halloween tasting room. Diaz channeled her Mexican heritage in a special collaboration with Bewilder Brewery on a Mole Porter, creating a mole-based spicy dark chocolate treat with colorful sugar skulls.
It’s not hard to understand why her bake sales sell out in less than two hours — and the demand is steadily growing.
Sweet Vinyl Bakeshop naturally emerged after years of baking for her family and friends’ special occasions (including making 300 mini cupcakes for her own wedding). The name is a nod to her love of music, which Diaz says, “runs her life.” She has a record player at home and is known to bake cupcakes inspired by her favorite artists and songs.
The new business, which opened in February 2020, also plays to her passion for community and the push to support local, especially breweries and restaurants. She grew the bakeshop from the ground up during the COVID-19 pandemic, spurred by a combination of necessity, creativity and collaboration. It helped, she said, that members of the Salt Lake community have been hugely supportive of each other. “At the end of the day, it’s all about community,” she said. “I wouldn’t be here without them.”
Which is why you can expect more collaborations. In addition to partnering with multiple breweries each week, Diaz is working on a breakfast pop-up with local coffee roaster Mindful Coffee. And, she’s ready to expand her repertoire of boozy and musically inspired creations, and take the “show on the road,” with bake sale pop-ups at breweries across the country.
Interested in more boozy sweets? Read about Charleston’s spirit fueled Hardscoop Ice Cream here.
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