In the large mixing combine 1 1/4 cups confectioners sugar, butter, salt, and vanilla using an electric mixer. Add milk and continue mixing until well combined. Use a spatula to scrape the mixture from the sides of the bowl.
With the mixer running, slowly add remaining 1/2 cup confectioners sugar, mixing until well combined.
Preheat oven to 375° F.
Line 16 muffin cups with paper liners.
In a small non reactive mixing bowl stir until smooth the boiling hot water and the cocoa powder.
Let cool to room temperature.
In another bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, and salt.
Then in the bowl of your electric mixer, or with a hand mixer, cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating until smooth. Add the vanilla extract.
Add the flour mixture and beat only until incorporated. Then add the cooled cocoa mixture and stir until smooth.
Fill each muffin cup two-thirds full with batter and bake for about 16-20 minutes or until risen, springy to the touch, and a toothpick inserted into a cupcake comes out clean.
Remove from oven and place on a wire rack to cool.
Once the cupcakes have completely cooled, frost it with lovely swirls of the vanilla frosting and top it with fresh raspberry, dusted with confectioners sugar.