It’s no secret that cake is one of my favorite foods. My fiancé and I have a tremendous sweet tooth (teeth?), but I am the one who loves cake. Cake, cupcakes, cake in a jar…you name it, I probably love it.
For many couples, the cake (or other dessert option) is a tradition and something needed – but the focus is about displaying it and cutting it for photos. As far as I am concerned, the cake needs to look AND taste great. I feel the cake should be reflective of the couple, but should also be a tasty ending to a delicious meal.
Cake tasting was, by far, one of my favorite parts of the wedding planning process. I recommend seeking out different kinds of vendors and scheduling tastings in advance. Before you go, make sure to estimate how many guests you want to feed, what general kinds of designs you like/dislike, what flavors match your likes but are also general enough to appeal to your guests (think about allergies), and whether or not you want a groom’s cake.
We determined that one cake was enough. To be honest, it kind of bothered me that the “main” cake is considered the bride’s and there needed to be a separate “groom’s cake” designed to appeal to his interests. We agreed that we would pick a cake we BOTH like (it’s easy, since we have similar tastes) and would have the design reflect our wedding.
We tasted/interviewed two different places. One was a specialty bakery (no storefront – just a tasting room) that has an extremely talented team who design their desserts based on the couple and creative techniques/ideas. The other was an extremely busy bakery (storefront) with a wedding department, however, they had a much more limited menu and you had to pick a pre-set design from their portfolio. To be honest, their cake was delicious, but it tasted like every other “wedding cake” (I did cater for a long time and I work with an event company now) I’ve ever had. Additionally, I hated the idea that my cake would come from a “pick and choose” catalogue.
Obviously, we went with the first bakery, Sweet Traders. Not only did they have a wide range of DELICIOUS flavor options and combinations, but we were also the only appointment at the time (individual attention) and they took the time to sketch up a design that matched our theme, our guest count, and our personality. Without revealing too much ahead of the big day, let’s just say there will be a tasteful leopard print element. Flavor-wise, two tiers will be red velvet with a cream cheese filling and one will be a marble cake with an oreo whipped cream. The entire cake will be covered with an Italian vanilla buttercream. Excuse me while I drool…
When it comes to tastings, be forewarned that some might have a fee. For most, that fee will be applied to the cost of the deposit if you book with them (to avoid people just tasting for a free dessert). Others might offer free tastings, but don’t walk in expecting that.
One thing I really appreciated about Sweet Traders was that they said “to be honest – no cake tastes good in a year!” and offered a discount on a small cake for our one year anniversary. We agreed that we would rather celebrate with a fresh, delicious cake, than a stale one with freezer burn…
Go enjoy your tastings…and let me know if you ever want me to join with a “professional” opinion.