10 tips to get the cake you want

by Brooke Rester | Dolce Bakeshop, Long Beach

When planning a wedding, a bride’s mind turns to flower arrangements, music, venues and even table settings. With so much to consider, it’s no wonder that one of the final items checked off the list is the cake. Your cake, just like your dress, should be a centerpiece of the ceremony, and no bride should have to compromise. Whether you’ve been planning your dream affair since the age of 5 or you’re a woman of simple tastes, here are 10 tips on getting the exact cake that you want.

DON’T WAIT TOO LATE
Bakeries often book up well in advance of ceremonies, and the best reviewed shops may be booked up for
months! Given the special nature and intricate details of a wedding cake, decorators will often block off space
in order to devote extra attention to your masterpiece. Waiting too late to book may result in having to settle for a cake that doesn’t exceed your expectations.

DEVELOP A RELATIONSHIP
Prior to booking with a bakery, make several visits to purchase sweet treats and also chat with the employees. Odds are delightful customer service will translate to a satisfying experience when making requests or asking for accommodations.

SCHEDULE A TASTING
Ask each prospective bakery to sit down with you and your fiancé (or trusted confidant) to discuss options. Be prepared to pay a small fee. Also, be sure to ask if this fee can apply as a deposit towards the final cost of your cake.

COME PREPARED
Have an idea, generally speaking, about what you’d like your cake to look like. A baker can help you develop your artistic vision, but you must first have something in mind. Scan social media, Pinterest, in particular, for ideas that match your individual style. Don’t be afraid to suggest these ideas during your tasting.

SPEND ON QUALITY
This goes without saying, but the old adage, “You get what you pay for,” is right. Don’t try to skimp here. Know
your budget and make it known during the tasting so your baker will be able to craft something within your range that lives up to your expectations.

HAVE AN OPEN MIND
Let the pro suggest flavor combinations that you’ve never experienced. You may not know what you’re missing! Square instead of round cakes with gum paste flowers or sugar work? Ask an artist about their strengths and use them!

REFLECTION OF YOU
If you’re reading this, you may already be feeling the pressure exerted by family members and allowing it to influence your decisions. Grandma doesn’t eat almond flavored cake? Remember this day belongs to you and your fiancé. Is your style more rustic than traditional? Make sure you get the most of your cake experience by choosing the flavors you want, not your family or friends.

SETTLE UP
Many bakeries require deposits or full payment up front. Take care of the payment well in advance of the ceremony. The last thing you want to be doing is writing a check on your wedding day.

LET YOUR GROOM HAVE FUN
The smaller groom’s cake is often a showcase for his favorite pastime, sports team or fraternity. Show your love for him by letting him cut loose here!

THINK OUTSIDE THE BOX
A cake doesn’t have to be a cake. Many brides are bringing other favorite desserts into the mix. You may have already started seeing macaron towers or miniature pies at recent ceremonies. If you have an out-of-the-box idea, embrace it.

No matter what your taste, a cake shouldn’t be something that you compromise on. Follow these tips and you’ll be cutting into a cake so good, you won’t mind if your honey rubs a bit on your nose!

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