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4.24.2009

The quest for cake continues... Ugh!

Well, Smarty and I had our cake tasting appointment at Edda's on Wednesday after work. I'll have to admit, it wasn't quite what I expected. (Kind of disappointing, to be honest.)

When we arrived, I explained to the woman behind the counter (not Edda) that we were there for the tasting. She quickly replied that it was too late and tastings were over for the day. (Hmm, even though we had an appointment for 5:00pm... and were on time? And they close at 6:30pm?) The woman then checked her book, found my name, and less-than-enthusiastically handed me a huge binder filled with photographs of their cakes. Somewhat confused, Smarty and I took a seat at a little table. Even though I knew exactly what I wanted and brought photographs to explain, we browsed through the binder anyway.

A few minutes later, the woman showed up at our table with a tray holding seven little dishes each containing a different flavor of cake, topped with a messy squeeze of white buttercream and two plastic spoons. She walked away and we got to tasting.

From the start, Smarty had in mind that we should get a traditional Cuban rum cake. They've become fixtures at all of our family get-togethers. The cakes are always nice and moist inside (especially when you get one that's really drenched!), plus it would be a real Miami treat for all of our out-of-town guests.

Edda's vanilla rum was on the dry side, but emerged as our early favorite, followed by amaretto and orange. Tasting each of the non-chocolate ones, I came to realize that they were all essentially the exact same cake. The only difference between them were the flavored syrups with which they were soaked (and at times, unevenly so). That struck me as a bit odd, since I'm used to baking flavors into cakes. In the end, we settled on a vanilla rum/orange/vanilla rum combination for our three-tiered cake.

I walked back to the counter to let the woman know that we'd finished tasting and were ready to talk business. I showed her the photographs and explained exactly what I had in mind for our simply decorated cake. I wasn't too sure that she understood everything I said, so I used some Spanish for safe measure. Even still, she couldn't quite understand what I meant by the word "taupe" and how it's not the same as ivory. So I promised I'd bring some paint chips from Home Depot that she could use as color samples.

When I was satisfied that she understood enough about the creation that I would like for her to make, I asked her how much it would cost. She punched a couple of keys on her pocket calculator and casually said "Six-hundred dollars". Huh? For 100 people? I was expecting more in the $400-500 range, but I didn't let on. I asked her what kind of deposit was needed to place the order and told her that I'd want to get the color samples for her first before actually placing the order. What I didn't tell her is what Smarty and I decided as soon as we got to the car: we're going to shop around with other bakers.

Had the woman's personality been warmer or more "Gee, I'm really happy you're here!", the higher-than-expected quote might not have shocked me so much. (Kind of how it went with my dress. Ha!) It felt like we were bothering her and she really didn't need our business. Maybe she was tired or having a bad day, I don't know. She just didn't make a good first impression. (Come to think of it, she is the first vendor I've encountered in this whole wedding planning process that didn't congratulate us on our engagement! Hmmm.) I guess I was just hoping for a little more enthusiasm... kind of like Martin Short's character in "Father of the Bride". :o)

One good way of looking at it is that there's more cake to be tasted, beginning with Lucila's on Tuesday night!

2 comments:

  1. yikes. hope you find someone a little more interested in working with you!
    Meetin with potential vendors is my least favorite part of the wedding process (when I don't know I want them ahead of time)

    It's so hit or miss and I never want to trust my gut because my mind says "go with this once--more vendor interviews are a waste of time!"

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  2. Wow...I cant believe she just squeezed the buttercream on like that! Im glad you are going to a few other places first! I actually had that same feeling about the attitude trying to find a gown I really want to try on. I called a few places and the first place I called the girl answered I asked about the dress she came back on the phone and simply said, "No we dont have it." And then hung up! Not a, "No Im sorry we dont have it but maybe we have something similar we can show you." Or a "We carry other dresses in that designer that may interest you." This is the wedding industry right? Shouldnt people be excited to work with brides!!! LOL!

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