There’s a reason Buddy Valastro is known as the Cake Boss. As the master baker at his New Jersey bakery, Carlo’s Bake Shop, Buddy has been dreaming up elegant, eye-popping wedding cakes for nearly 20 years. And his sweet treats have gained national attention thanks to hit TLC reality shows Cake Boss and Next Great Baker.
In between launching his brand-new show Buddy’s Bakery Rescue and opening Cake Boss Café in Times Square, Buddy has taken some time to share the seven things he wishes brides knew when designing their wedding cakes.
Out of all the wedding-planning appointments a couple has to attend, the cake consultation is the one you should definitely take your fiancé to. Who isn’t going to be happy eating cake?
The number of guests and the level of difficulty of the cake design both factor into its price. One trick is to have a smaller wedding cake and then order additional sheet cakes to feed everybody. That can usually keep costs down.
Give your baker ideas of what you want, but also pick his or her brain. Ask if certain colors go well together and ask about flavor and filling combinations. See what he or she can do and then decide what you like and what you don’t.
I always tell couples to take as many pictures, colors, and details as possible to the consultation. A good cake decorator can draw inspiration from a variety of items, such as the bride’s dress, the flowers at the wedding, color scheme, theme (if you have one), and the venue. Take numerous ideas and you can edit down.
Call me old fashioned, but there is nothing more beautiful than a classically decorated wedding cake. A lot of brides want elaborate designs, but I think you should keep the wedding cake elegant and have some fun with the groom’s cake. (Fun fact: Nine times out of 10, the groom wants his cake to be chocolate!)
If you hire a reputable baker, having the cake delivered to the venue is something you shouldn’t have to worry about. The baker should have sanitary and safe methods of transporting your cake to the reception on time.
Something I have been seeing a lot of that I don’t really like is “naked” cake. These are cakes that are stacked and filled, but not decorated. I think a cake needs decoration to set it apart and make it unique to your celebration.
Did you know that my wedding cake was adorned with thousands of sugar flowers that I made myself? It took me two weeks just to make them and then two days to assemble and decorate the cake. I actually completed the cake the morning of the wedding!
Opening photograph courtesy of Buddy Valastro