E.T. Basket Cake from Summer Tribute Store at Universal Studios Florida

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As of the time of writing, the classic Steven Spielberg movie, E.T., will be basically forty years old. Yes, forty years ago, it first appeared in theatres. Recently, it was announced that E.T. and Jaws would be re-released in theatres to celebrate their different anniversaries. As you may know, Universal Orlando designed a special “Tribute Store” to celebrate classic Universal movies this year. As you might imagine, my favorite part of these seasonal stores involves the snacks. This summer, the snack/treat room offers many themed treats to enjoy.

An impressive looking one goes by the name “E.T. Basket Cake.” This adorable looking treat costs $12 before any discounts. The cake, frosting, and fondant creation resembles E.T. in the bicycle basket. Before I attempt to explain the quality and value of this treat, this cake should come with a warning label. To enjoy this, you will need to eat E.T. in a violent way. I respect the fact that this E.T. tastes delicious and is less real than even the character in the classic movie. Still, you might scare young children taking a bite out of E.T.’s head on top of this cake.

Okay, now that I have been melodramatic about eating a cute piece of cake, how is this cake?

Is it worth your time and risk traumatizing young children and some adults? Maybe?

The presentation looks amazing. The fondant creating E.T. looking out from the bicycle seat deserves high praise. The chocolate cake also warrants high marks. The frosting tastes excellent by any bakery standards. In fairness, Universal chefs do not specifically clarify the type of frosting used. For my purposes, I will define it as cookies and crème buttercream style frosting. I may write about theme park food often, but my baking skills/knowledge lack refinement. Whatever exact type of frosting resides within this cake; it tastes phenomenal.

The rest of the cake forms a solid shape. A chocolate shell base establishes a foundation. The chocolate cake and some cookies and crème mousse round this creation out.

Everything up to this point matches with the nine people I have consulted about this treat. Yet, some guests voiced some negatives. One guest found the chocolate cake to be too dry. Several commented on how the chocolate shell melted too quickly. This issue often happens with chocolate in Florida so be prepared to enjoy this treat soon after purchasing.

For full disclosure until the day of writing this, all reports I received declared the fondant tasted great. Though I love most fondants, I always have suspicion of it tasting good. My experience with fondant leads me to think it looks great but often fails to match the quality of dessert it is featured with. However, on the day of writing this review, I got two different reports that the fondant served as the worst part of this treat. In fact, when Jeremy Stein, of Main Street Magic Podcast, sent me a photo of the cake, I told him the fondant got great reviews. He expressed that their experience did not match that. I later got the same report from another blogger colleague.

Photo courtesy of Main Street Magic Podcast

So, what does all this mean? First, these treats are mass produced creations. As a result, the quality will vary. Second, you will need to decide if the consistent good qualities of this cake warrant the $12 price. Third, how much do you want to eat the head off E.T. in a theme park? Fourth, no one I consulted claimed this was a bad dessert so there is that.

Photo courtesy of Universal Food Blog

Yes, I am scheduling a visit with my therapist to discuss my repulsion to eating the E.T. Basket Cake.

As always, eat like you mean it.


Pirates & Princesses (PNP) is an independent, opinionated fan-powered news blog that covers Disney and Universal Theme Parks, Themed Entertainment and related Pop Culture from a consumer's point of view. Opinions expressed by our contributors do not necessarily reflect the views of PNP, its editors, affiliates, sponsors or advertisers. PNP is an unofficial news source and has no connection to The Walt Disney Company, NBCUniversal or any other company that we may cover.