Picky Family?

Business By Kitagrl Updated 9 Apr 2008 , 3:41am by Janette

Kitagrl Posted 8 Apr 2008 , 6:55pm
post #1 of 21

I met with a VERY nice wedding couple, a couple weeks ago. Groom is very picky and wanted plain yellow cake with a buttercream that tastes nothing like bakery store icing because he hates that, LOL.

I made my "doctored" yellow cake that most customers rave over. I usually, for tastings, just make an 8" cake which they can take the rest home and share with family. So they tried it and said it was very good. I knew he was picky and specifically told him to tell me if he did not like the cake or icing and we would try something else. No he insisted it was very good.

So this week he leaves a message and I just called back.....still very polite and nice but said his family tried the cake and wants it more moist (never heard THAT before) which is fine, I'll add some simple syrup... and wants the icing less sweet. So I told them the whipped icing I use is very soft and almond flavored so he is going to ask his fiance if she would like that.

Just curious why the couple liked the cake fine at my house but now want changes, two weeks after the meeting and over a week after the contract was signed and returned? Do you think its the family being goofy or do you think they just tasted it later and decided they didn't like it so much?

Like I said the guy is very nice, and actually has been my contact (rather than the bride, who is also very nice) so I was quite surprised they decided they didn't like the cake as much after all and want changes.

20 replies
Kitagrl Posted 8 Apr 2008 , 7:03pm
post #2 of 21

Oops wanted to say my bad, he has NOT sent the contract back. And I did ask him what about the cake was not liked and he just said some of the wedding party is older, and the parents, didn't like the sweeter icing and they just wanted something whipped instead. So I think its all okay. He's SOOO polite. I was just taken aback. However from some stories on here I think I'm lucky so far I haven't had any true Bridezillas!!!

OCakes Posted 8 Apr 2008 , 7:12pm
post #3 of 21

Based on your story, I would suggest not sending cake home with people in the future... however when I first read that you did that, I thought "hey, great selling point, so their friends/family can like the cake too & insist they go with ME!" =) So, that's a hard one! Maybe offer to let them come & taste the whipped cream, maybe a parent can come... as long as that's not harder for you to do, or if you can add any price change to the contract (as needed)... it sounds like they really want to work with you, rather than another Baker. They could have just went somewhere else. I really wouldn't worry about it too much, people can just be picky, and it sounds like this Groom has a picky family....... but I don't think they're the ones paying for it, and it sounded like the Bride & Groom liked it, which is always MY issue - as long as they are happy, you should be happy! It also sounds like there is just a small handful of older people who don't like sweeter frosting... I personally feel that if you don't like something, don't eat it... maybe they can just take less frosting on their fork - that's what my husband does! =) Good luck with this!

LNW Posted 8 Apr 2008 , 7:41pm
post #4 of 21

Iâm kind of in the middle with the whole bride/groom tastes versus family friendâs tastes.

My dh and I attended a friendâs wedding two years ago. GORGEOUS wedding. They went all out on this thing including the cake. It was just amazingly beautiful and I could not wait to have a bite. Then I found out the entire 5 tier cake was carrot cake (brides absolute favorite). All of it. I donât hate carrot cake but I donât care for it much either. Obviously none of the other 200+ guests who were there did either because I saw exactly 5 people get a slice of the brideâs cake. The grooms cake on the other hand was a giant replica of a REESE'S peanut butter cup and we were told it tasted just like one too (it did btw). There was a line around the banquet hall to get to that grooms cake. The poor cake servers were slicing it paper thin and then slicing those slices in half horizontally so everyone could get a slice. They managed to make it work and everybody who could eat cake (they had quite a few diabetics in attendance so they got their own fruit buffet instead) got a slice, sort of.

We all went out for dinner some time later and the couple told us they had thrown the entire brideâs cake away. I felt sooooo bad for them; I know it couldnât have been a cheap cake. But then I also thought, you had a 5 tier wedding cake; you could have chosen something different for 4 of those tiers. But the bride loved carrot cake and it was her cake so thatâs what she got. Too bad her guests didnât love it as much a she did.

So I think your couple is being pretty considerate to try and get a cake most of the family will like. Personally I canât eat a whole wedding cake by myself and (besides those girls in the disaster thread who ate that huge b-day cake themselves) nobody I know could do it either. So keeping your guests pallets in mind when ordering a cake is pretty thoughtful but also smart. They are buying the cake for their guests to eat after all.

If you can cater to their picky family and please them just imagine all the good things they are going to say about you!

Kitagrl Posted 8 Apr 2008 , 7:49pm
post #5 of 21

Yes...and they are very polite so this does seem like just the thing they would do. It just startled me as I thought they loved the cake and then called back to make several changes (especially the moist part...I have always been told my cakes are moist! Oh well!) so it kind of threw me. They did not even ask for a second tasting. Hopefully they will be happy with the final result.

I feel bad for the carrot cake bride! Seems like maybe she did not think it through. Poor thing. My husband would have taken home an entire tier...but I'd have been in line for the sliver of Reeses cake. LOL.

smab109 Posted 8 Apr 2008 , 7:50pm
post #6 of 21

My first thought....well of course the cake would dry out a couple weeks after you sent it home! Especially if it wasnt covered, etc. Hope it all works out for you!

Kitagrl Posted 8 Apr 2008 , 7:54pm
post #7 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by smab109

My first thought....well of course the cake would dry out a couple weeks after you sent it home! Especially if it wasnt covered, etc. Hope it all works out for you!




I wondered that too....I am not sure how long it took them to share the cake. However in my experience my yellow cake with regular buttercream almost gets "soggy" with "age" so I am really truly not sure how it possibly could have gotten dry...? Unless they refrigerated it and made it cold, which makes a cake taste more dry.

kansaslaura Posted 8 Apr 2008 , 7:59pm
post #8 of 21

I have never sent home cake like that for the whole family to try. If the bride and groom loved it, that should have been the end of the tasting. You have a generous spirit, but the quicker you learn you're not going to please them all, the better.

Good Luck!

LNW Posted 8 Apr 2008 , 8:01pm
post #9 of 21

Ewww, I hope they didn't feed old cake to their family! I wouldn't worry so much about your cake being dry. If it's never been a problem in the past I, like smab109, would have to assume they gave them some cake that had sat out for a little while (or been in the fridge).

I'd focus on the icing since that seems to be the main problem.

It's really neat that the groom is so involved!

Kitagrl Posted 8 Apr 2008 , 8:03pm
post #10 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by kansaslaura

I have never sent home cake like that for the whole family to try. If the bride and groom loved it, that should have been the end of the tasting. You have a generous spirit, but the quicker you learn you're not going to please them all, the better.

Good Luck!




I actually do it because its easier...my wedding tastings right now are too far between to store cake in my freezer. So I bake a fresh 8" because I might as well do so, and then just give it to them. I charge $25 or free with order. I guess I don't really do it "on purpose" for the family to taste, but it works out that way because if I make anything smaller, then we just sit around all weekend eating leftover cake. See my siggy? icon_lol.gif

TheButterWench Posted 8 Apr 2008 , 8:06pm
post #11 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by kansaslaura

I have never sent home cake like that for the whole family to try. If the bride and groom loved it, that should have been the end of the tasting. You have a generous spirit, but the quicker you learn you're not going to please them all, the better.

Good Luck!




I agree with KansasLaura and someone else who posted about not sending cake home.

Too many opinions and the only one that matter are the bride and grooms.

If you'd like, what you can do is when you confirm your tasting appointment is tell them they are each more than welcomed to bring ONE guest each.

That also limits the number of people at your free tasting. If they want another tasting ( or what I call Free Cake for all) they pay. Money to be put toward booking the date.

I know things are hard out there and we tend to bend over backwards for our customers, but I'm not about to hand someone 30 to 50 dollars ( the cost of my 8" cakes) when I can use it myself.

Kitagrl Posted 8 Apr 2008 , 8:18pm
post #12 of 21

Oh...I only charge $25 for my 8" cake for a tasting...however, all it is is a homestyle iced cake. No border, nothing...just swirled icing. (Ever since I was a kid I loved the look of the swirled icing on the cake mix boxes so tastings are when I get to do it! LOL!)

On the other hand, now that the family and bridal party get to make changes on the cake, the bride/groom won't hear complaints (we hope) during or after the wedding...right?

darandon Posted 8 Apr 2008 , 8:18pm
post #13 of 21

[quote="TheButterWench
Too many opinions and the only one that matter are the bride and grooms.
[/quote]

The bride and grooms opinion matter....but it is the person paying for the cake who matters the most.
My mom paid for my wedding cake so she had final say.

Kitagrl Posted 8 Apr 2008 , 8:24pm
post #14 of 21

I'm not completely sure who is paying for this cake, but the groom had a wad of cash in his wallet which he took out at the tasting to pay me over half of the bill, and is sending the other half with the contract soon. So I assume its him...?

Like I said, very nice people, no bridezilla! I was just worried that they didn't like the cake, and I went out of my way to make sure they DID like it before they left my house. Oh well! I asked him this afternoon on the phone if they changed their mind or if it was someone else who didn't like the cake, and he just said some of the people that tasted it didn't like the icing and wanted the cake moister. So I guess it wasn't them. Its okay.

deanwithana Posted 8 Apr 2008 , 8:30pm
post #15 of 21

OK.....I was once a bride and am also a personality that wants to please everyone. If I were to have taken a piece home and my aunt didn't like the icing, then that would have been changed.......if my mom didn't like the cake, then that would have been changed, etc. I am easier to please then they are.......they tend to give me their opinions and then say "but it is whatever you want"

It sounds like this couple might be "people pleasers" as well. Sometimes you get more wrapped up in making others happy to worry about yourself. It's probably best that you do a small cake for tasting so that you don't leave this window of opportunity open for other comments as you will never please everyone. Although sending them home with an entire cake from their tasting is a nice gesture....it might add to the confusion!!!! Donate the rest of the cake to the fire station or somewhere since you are worried about it sticking around........just an idea!!!

Kitagrl Posted 8 Apr 2008 , 8:36pm
post #16 of 21

Okay so you are saying make the cake but then keep it myself? Wouldn't that look tacky?

I will say I have had some looks of shock and surprise from several of my tastings when they take the cake home. Maybe some of them really don't WANT to carry cake home? Hmmm.

FromScratch Posted 8 Apr 2008 , 8:46pm
post #17 of 21

You know what? It's okay to throw it away. icon_smile.gif I used to keep leftovers, but it's just so much cake sometimes and I don't even like cake that much and my kids don't need to eat it all the time. So now.. I throw it away. You are making our money for it.. it is paid for so you don't have to worry about it. I make a 6" cake along with 6 cupcakes. They eat what they want with me and take the rest home. I don't ask them to make flavor decisions right then and there. This is just for them to see what I can do. If they like my vanilla and chocolate cake they are confident that I can make any flavor for them. I charge $25 for it (soon to be going up) to cover the costs. If they book then I'll take that off of the top of their cake. I'm making enough off the cakes to warrant the $25.

You can easily tell your customer that you have a frosting that is less sweet. If they want to try it have them order a small cake or stop by for a scoop in a container when you have some on hand. icon_smile.gif Talk to them and evoke your confidence in yourself and your ability to make a cake that will be delicious.

indydebi Posted 9 Apr 2008 , 2:39am
post #18 of 21

If you think it's too much cake to throw away, then maybe you're making too much cake?

I bake a 6" square cake. I cut it into quarters .... four 3x3 pieces (single layer). I tort and ice it (star tip ---- zig zag). This cuts into 4 "sampling" size slices and since I permit no more than 4 people, it works out perfect.

I serve 2 of the quarters at the sampling, leaving me 2 other quarters for the next sampling.

Once, I had a bride call to ask about the icing because her dad said it seemed a little "stiff". So I educated her on "this is called crusting and it's what wedding cake icing needs to do if you want your roses, leaves, and other decors to hold up." I also told her if it was a problem, just let me know when she placed the final order and I'd make a note to add more fat to the icing to reduce the crusting. She ended up having no problem with it. Sometimes we just need to educate them. (like explaining how serving cake 2 weeks later will make it taste dry. icon_confused.gif )

And on the carrot cake bride? That's when I fold my arms, go into "mom" stance and give my "you may think this day is all about you but it's not ...." speech, and their lesson on proper etiquette on taking care of guests at an event they are hosting. It is very rude to order a cake in a flavor because "well, that's what *I* like!" (look pouty ... stomp her little foot). No one would throw a dinner party for vegetarians and serve prime rib because that would be rude and inconsiderate. A bride who does not take her guests' taste into consideration is rude and inconsiderate. (holsters her mom-finger and rides into the sunset!)

TheButterWench Posted 9 Apr 2008 , 3:14am
post #19 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by darandon

[quote="TheButterWench
Too many opinions and the only one that matter are the bride and grooms.




The bride and grooms opinion matter....but it is the person paying for the cake who matters the most.
My mom paid for my wedding cake so she had final say.[/quote]

I totally and respectfully disagree with this statement. No matter WHO pays for the cake, if it's not the Bride and Groom then it's a gift to the Bride and Groom and if the person doing the gifting is sensitive to their likes and dislikes will order a cake they like.

Just because I'm paying for something I'm going to impose my taste on the recipient of the gift? No, I don't think I should.

Giving something should be about the person getting it, not about the person giving it.

indydebi Posted 9 Apr 2008 , 3:23am
post #20 of 21

I TOTALLY agree with ButterWench. I was fortunate enough to have learned this lesson with my very first wedding cake oh so many decades ago.

It was a friend of the family. Bride wanted something a little off-beat. MOG told my mom to "....tell debi I'm paying for it and I don't want that design."

It was my sister who said, "You better decide now what your policy is going to be on that."

She was right.

So my policy is the bride and groom have the final say. how they pay for it is THEIR problem, but I will not be put in the middle of their financial blackmail.

If mom has the final say, then the bride and groom don't even need to come for the sampling ... just send mom and let her pick the whole dang thing out. Stop wasting my time with "pretending" you're there to pick out a cake.

Janette Posted 9 Apr 2008 , 3:41am
post #21 of 21

I had a Bride that took samples home and her Husband-to-be sampled days later for whatever reason. She asked if I could remake them so he could try them fresh. I told her "no". Still got the order.

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