I had never had a king cake until a few years ago, when my friend Ann (who went to college in New Orleans) decided that we should try making one. It was a huge success (thanks mostly to Joanne Chang's brioche recipe from her Flour cookbook), but I didn't have much to compare it to.
But when Sucre Bakery asked me to try their king cake, I jumped at the chance. A real king cake, straight from New Orleans? Yes please! (Here's some history on the king cake if you don't know it.)
And the taste? Oh so good! I was a little worried about it having a cream cheese filling, but in truth, the cream cheese is very light and not at all cloying. In spots, it was almost absent, while in others, it was a bit thicker. The dough itself is light and chewy, like a perfect breakfast pastry. We enjoyed some of the cake at room temperature, but we also heated some for a few seconds in the microwave (as suggested by Sucre) and that was even better! In fact, I'm drooling just thinking about it.
I was worried that a king cake shipped from the land of Mardi Gras would be crazy expensive, but Sucre's cakes are only $20, so even with shipping, it would hard to find anything in the Boston area at a comparable price (not to mention the taste!). But they only make king cakes from January until Mardi Gras (which this year is only a week and a half away!!!), so order now!
Full Disclosure note: I was sent samples for free by Sucre, but the opinions are all mine.