February 12, 2011 | Short Order

Hot and Sugared at the Museum of Sex
by Alissa Merksamer       

Firefighter pinup Michael Jiminez sizes up a tiny wasabi cupcake. Photo: On Point Publishing

        Things got steamier than usual Thursday night at the Museum of Sex on 5th Avenue. Celebrating the City of the Brave Firefighters of NYC 2011 calendar as part of its “Awaken the Senses” Valentine’s Day program, the museum threw a dessert bash with signings, sinews, and plenty of sultry treats.

        By 6:00 p.m. the gift shop ignited like a playboy party with a gender reversal – giddy women, aged twenty to sixty, sidled up to the brawny pinups with the awkwardness of tweens. “It’s nice to finally get recognized for twenty-seven years of handsomeness,” joked Mr. February aka Firefighter Phil Sylvester. 


        Needless to say, "regular" men were noticeably absent from the event. After all, who wants to be the lone crayfish on a plateful of lobster?


        The firemen didn't seem at all embarrassed to be treated like sex objects. They basked in the attention, autographing calendars and grinning for pictures, their powder-blue tees threatening to rip with each embrace of some lucky lady's  waist. At one point, Deb Weiner, co-owner of Sugar Sweet Sunshine Bakery, leapt into the arms of Mr. September, aka Michael Tuma, for her own photo op.


        Bite-size desserts reflected the night’s sensuous theme. Spicy chai cake truffles from Mimi Truffles were blended with honey vanilla frosting and laced with reputed aphrodisiacs like cardamom and ginger. Wasabi-spiked chocolate cupcakes from Sugar Sweet Sunshine left palates tingling.


        No surprise, red was everywhere. Mimi’s brought flashy red velvet cake truffles blended with cream cheese frosting and enrobed in dark chocolate. Desserts by Michael Allen celebrated summer with elegant raspberry truffles and strawberry-flavored French macaroons.


        Some desserts were just naturally glamorous. Sugar Sweet Sunshine’s chocolate bomb oozed decadence with its layers of chocolate cake, chocolate pudding, and chocolate whipped cream.  Also inherently sexy were Michael Allen’s deep amber canelés, their crispy, caramelized exteriors hiding creamy cores. Only his financiers seemed out of place – a little too "high-tea-at-the-Plaza" for the Museum of Sex.


        The night wasn’t purely about pinups and pleasure.  It also served as a fundraiser with a portion of all calendar sales going toward the Thomas R. Elsasser Fund, an aid for families who lose a firefighter outside the line of duty. Calendars can be purchased through On Point Publishing's website.

        Sugar Sweet Sunshine 126 Rivington Street between Essex and Norfolk  212 995 1960; Mimi Truffles mimitrufflesnyc@gmail.com 847 400 6682; Desserts by Michael Allen 1015 Fulton Street, Brooklyn  718 230 3360.

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