On February 27 and 28, I attended the That Takes the Cake! Sugar Art and Cake Show as a Foodie Correspondent for FoodBuzz for the second consecutive year. And I must say, I had a blast! As a cake decorating hobbyist, the cake show to me was cake heaven on earth.
The 2-day event was hosted by the Capital Confectioners Cake Club and this year’s theme was 2010: A Cake Odyssey – Science Fiction and Fantasy. Cake decorating enthusiasts of all skill levels – from beginners to masters – are welcome to compete. The two days were packed with activities: Showcase Demonstrations, Onsite Competitions, Mini Classes, Informal Demonstrations and a Dinner Demonstration. All these, save for the informal demonstrations, I was able to attend. You can just imagine how many hundreds of photos I took at the event!
My favorite part, as always, was the Showcase Demonstrations. Industry experts Nicholas Lodge, Geraldine Randlesome, John Kraus, Kathy Scott, Lauren Kitchens and Mike McCarey taught attendees valuable lessons and techniques in cake decorating and sugar arts. These experts are celebrities in the world of cake decorating and sugar arts and most of them have already appeared on the Food Network’s Cake Challenge and TLC’s Ultimate Cake Off. In cake heaven, they are the gods.
Here are photos from the Showcase Demonstrations:
I attended as many of the activities as I can, but of the 3 on-site competitions, I was only able to attend one – the Sculpted Cake Competition. I did manage to take photos of the cakes from the Mystery Cake Competition. On-site competitions are exactly like the challenges seen on tv, but for a much shorter time limit, 45-60 minutes for the Mystery and Sculpted Cake Competitions and 2 hours for the Wedding Cake Competition.
I can’t help but admire the participants for turning out beautifully decorated cakes in such a short period of time. What they did in 45 minutes would have taken me an entire day to accomplish.
Here are photos from the on-site competitions:
On the evening of the first day, a Dinner Demonstration was held. The cake show’s guest judges worked in teams to decorate a huge display cake. Dinner attendees enjoyed a hearty meal, learned the techniques used by the teams of judges and were entertained at the same time. Sure we can learn from books but it really is different when one watches a live demonstration.
These are the photos from the Dinner Demonstration:
On Day 2 of the event, I was able to attend one of the many mini classes. These are not free, mind you…even for press pass holders like me! A friend of mine gave it to me as a gift. What can I say, when it rains cake blessings, it pours! The mini-class I attended was for Fondant Flowers and Lace Points conducted by Chef Steven Stellingwerf.
Chef Steven has been a sugar artist for over 35 years and instructor for over 25 years. He has authored two books: The Gingerbread Box, and Perfectly Simple Muffins. He is also a guest author in The International Sugar Art Book 3. I am so glad to have attended his class. He is super nice, not to mention very patient and encouraging, too! I wish all instructors are like him.
As I mentioned, I took hundreds of cake photos, a lot of which I will have to share in a separate blog entry. For this blog entry however, I’m posting photos of cakes in the Show Cake Competition. Show Cakes must meet a certain height and serving size requirements. They are judged based on technique and representation of the year’s theme. Ready to be wowed? Wait no more. Here are photos of the cakes from the Show Cake Competition:
Oh, I’d like to share a photo of my most favorite cake from the show…
Lovely isn’t it? My 5-year old daughter decorated this all by herself! She’s in the Child Category (6 years old and under). Can you feel the pride? *wink* I love that all children participants (age 12 years old and below) were recognized and got a medal. Best Use of Candy, that’s my girl. Hee hee.
Next year’s show will be on February 28 and March 1st. I’m already excited about the theme for 2011: Comic Books – Super Heroes and Super Villains. For sure, it will again be a weekend of sweet sweet fun!
More photos from the cake show in the next few days! *cross fingers*