Let Them Eat Cake
When people ask me "Doug would you like some cake?"
I normally answer with one of the below responses,
"Is the Pope Catholic?"
"Does a black bear Sh*t in the woods?"
"Is a frog's butt water tight?"
"For future reference, just pass over the plate."
So you can imagine the taste buds jumping to high alert when it's wedding cake time at a wedding reception. I get to see some absolutely amazing creations, with flavours that add "the icing on the cake" for any wedding. With such an important tradition I thought I would ask an expert wedding cake artisan, Heike Hooper from Canberra Cake Boutique, her tips for choosing the right cake maker to get the best result on your wedding day.
Some important things to look for in a cake maker.
Proven reliability - Relying on a friend, relative or hobbyist can be recipe for disaster as they may not have the commitment, so when something comes up they are the quickest to pull out. Proven skills in a variety of different styles - someone saying "yeah I can do that, how hard can it be", when they have never done a similar style, they can find out that sometimes the simplest looking styles, can end up being the trickiest.
Reviews - Pictures of cakes need to be untouched, if a cake has been photo shopped it's likely the end product you receive isn't what the photo shows. Check the reviews - generally the first 5 or 10 reviews are from family or friends, if they haven't got more than that then they probably haven't really been accurately reviewed.
Experience - Looking at the number of great looking cakes they have made, is a much better way of determining experience. Someone who has been decorating for 2 years may be better than someone who has 20 years experience. (Making 5 cakes a year for 20 years may not make you better than someone making 100 cakes a year for 2 years)
Passion - This is super important! See if your decorator still has the passion for it or are they just doing it to make a few dollars. It most definitely will show in their work.
Flexibility - They need to be a little flexible. If you book 12 months to 2 years in advance and trends change significantly over that time you may want to revise your original design.
Honesty - If you have a design in mind and they can see its not going to look good, they need to tell you that and not just agree with whatever your ideas are. Working together will create the perfect outcome for you.
Now wedding cakes aren't for everyone and there are so many other options for you, however if you intend to get a wedding cake deserving of your special day then finding the right person to create it for you is super important.
P.S. - I used to camp in Heike's kitchen and work on my laptop while she fed me the offcuts to weddings cakes she was making. I can't tell you the party my taste buds had on those days. So important to have your cake looking amazing but equally having it taste like a gift from the gods.