Tried My Sampling Appt A New Way Today

Business By indydebi Updated 4 Jun 2011 , 3:32pm by Tzoavva

indydebi Posted 22 Jun 2008 , 7:03pm
post #1 of 61

Had a bride in for a sampling today who was looking for tropical theme as she is getting married on a beach and having a reception up here later. She was very nice ... not the kind looking for a lot of something for nothing ... so I wanted to accommodate her special request.

Usually I do 3x3 single layer squares ... 2 white and 1 choc with different fillings. I just didn't want to make up 10 of these sample cakes with all of the different variations.

So I took a cue from the many "sampling" threads on here and stepped outside the box!!

I have some small square white plastic "plates" that are about 1.5" x 1.5" (cute for appetizer thingies). I laid out 10 of those with 9 different flavored fillings and 1 with plain white BC icing. I had 3x3 cakes of white, choc, rum, pineapple and orange. I pulled a long display tray out of my cookie display case and placed the fillings on that with little placards ID'ing the flavor. A tray for the cakes, each with a placard to ID the flavor.

They were able to sample a flavor of cake with 3 or 4 different fillings. She told me I was the 4th cake baker she had been to and she really liked how this was set up. (yay!)

Normally, I'm not in favor of offering so many choices at one time, but this was an exception request .... and I'm happy to say it worked out very very well!

So thanks to all CC'ers who happily share their different ways of doing things, be it decorating technique or sampling appts! You really helped me out!!

P.S. They commented on how the choc cake was the best they'd had ... very moist! Later in the conversation, the moistness of the cakes comes up again, so I tell them, "Some of these were in my freezer and some were baked this morning ... can you tell?"

First guess was "The chocolate HAD to be baked this morning!" (nope!) Then they guessed the white cake (Nope ... I stockpile those!). They were absolutely shocked to find out their favorite cakes were the frozen ones! hahahahaha!!!!!!!!!!!!! I LUV it when that happens!!!

60 replies
mkolmar Posted 22 Jun 2008 , 8:40pm
post #2 of 61

That's great Debbie. I always like reading posts like these, not is it positive but also gives great ideas.

MichelleM77 Posted 22 Jun 2008 , 10:42pm
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It reminds me of how I had seen it done on TV before. Of course I can't remember the cake decorator (very famous, large glasses, New York), but she had like a large artist's palette with different icings and cakes to then mix and match. Great idea indy!

chassidyg Posted 22 Jun 2008 , 10:50pm
post #4 of 61

What a neat idea! I'm glad she liked everything, sounds like a great bride to work with!

melodyscakes Posted 23 Jun 2008 , 1:08am
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thats how I do mine! otherwise, there are thousands of variations...I put the fillings in cute containers and they can try the ones they want too.


good just on trying something new!




melody

vdrsolo Posted 24 Jun 2008 , 3:47am
post #6 of 61

did you take a pic of your samples, I would love to see the presentation.

Also, where did you get those small "plates" from?

indydebi Posted 24 Jun 2008 , 3:52am
post #7 of 61
Quote:
Originally Posted by vdrsolo

did you take a pic of your samples, I would love to see the presentation.

Also, where did you get those small "plates" from?




No, I didn't have the camera at the shop! icon_cry.gificon_cry.gif And it looked so cute!!! I'm not sure where I got the little plates ... I think at a place south of Indy called FLower Factory. Now that I've found a GREAT use for them, I'm going to have to find them again!

I have another cake sampling tomorrow.... I'll take the camera for this one!

mlrojas Posted 24 Jun 2008 , 11:29am
post #8 of 61

Sylvia Weinstock - my friend saw her on TV and told me about this. It's a very neat idea. So Debi - did you get the gig???

-K8memphis Posted 24 Jun 2008 , 11:46am
post #9 of 61

Very cool, Indy. Indeed your were thinking outside the cakebox.

Umm, I have heard of some folks who give the happy couple piping bags of icing and another puts the fillings in champagne/martini glasses.

Me, of course I hand them a pen so they can sign the check. icon_lol.gif

No if I had a for real shop I might be more tea party.

indydebi Posted 24 Jun 2008 , 1:19pm
post #10 of 61
Quote:
Originally Posted by mlrojas

Sylvia Weinstock - my friend saw her on TV and told me about this. It's a very neat idea. So Debi - did you get the gig???




The one I did yesterday, they paid for the whole cake on the spot (not just my 20% down). Haven't heard from the first one yet, which is not uncommon .... my average-days-to-book-from-sampling-appt is 11.2 days, ranging from 1 day to 53 days before a final decision is made.

I have 2 other sampling appts this week, and I'm going to do it this way for them to get add'l feedback. It's actually less work for me to do it this way, much to my surprise icon_surprised.gif , because I don't have to fill and ice those 3x3 squares ... which doesn't take a lot of time anyway, but still ..... and since I prefer to push difference fillings instead of different cake flavors (because they are less work for me), this could end up being my new method.

Another new trick for this old dog!

MichelleM77 Posted 24 Jun 2008 , 1:31pm
post #11 of 61

Yes, that is her! How could I forget!

We have Flower Factory in Ohio too. Thanks for the tip indy!

indydebi Posted 24 Jun 2008 , 1:38pm
post #12 of 61

Michelle, I send ALL of my brides to Flower Factory! And I tell them to plan at LEAST 3 hours on their first visit! Mine has about 8 aisles of nothing but wedding stuff, aisles and aisles of candles and candle holders and about 1/3 of the store is silk florals. My FAVORITE store!!!

buttercream_dreams Posted 24 Jun 2008 , 5:09pm
post #13 of 61

what do you charge for a sampling sesh like this?

MichelleM77 Posted 24 Jun 2008 , 5:56pm
post #14 of 61

indy, i don't have a membership, but every time I hear someone mention it, I think I should get one! How do your brides get in? I thought I heard about their being new membership rules, like a public membership or something?

cakedout Posted 24 Jun 2008 , 6:04pm
post #15 of 61

So do you offer coffee, tea or milk icon_wink.gif with these samplings?

smab109 Posted 24 Jun 2008 , 8:55pm
post #16 of 61

Michelle, check out the one in Cleveland. We can get into that one with just our business card, but you need a vendors license for the one in Canton.

indydebi Posted 25 Jun 2008 , 12:46am
post #17 of 61

Michelle, Indy's used to be for businesses only, then changed it to open-to-the-public-with-membership (like Sam's Club). Last few times I was down there, they had a big banner on the store that memberships were free.

indydebi Posted 25 Jun 2008 , 12:51am
post #18 of 61

here's the promised pics of how I set this up. Nothing fancy ... but so far, 3 out of 3 brides have loved it.

Thanks to all the CC'ers who talked about how they do their samplings this way!
LL

MeMo07 Posted 25 Jun 2008 , 3:17pm
post #19 of 61

LOVE it! icon_smile.gif It looks yummy. icon_smile.gif

Erdica Posted 25 Jun 2008 , 3:53pm
post #20 of 61

Great idea! Thanks for the picture. Makes a lot of sense! Hope it goes well for you.

MichelleM77 Posted 25 Jun 2008 , 4:26pm
post #21 of 61

I'm on my way! LOL! Thanks for letting me know about the Flower Factory!

Solecito Posted 25 Jun 2008 , 10:10pm
post #22 of 61

Thanks for sharing Indydebi, great idea and very nice display!!

ladyonzlake Posted 28 Jun 2008 , 1:10am
post #23 of 61

Indy, that's how I do my tastings...got it from Sylvia! It's less work for me and they can try any combo they want. I only offer 3 cake flavors though but several frosting flavors and if I happen to have some fillings I'll put those out too.

I fill a large glass pitcher with water and serve this with my tastings. As they are tasting I also give suggestions on which combos to try.

ladyonzlake Posted 28 Jun 2008 , 1:11am
post #24 of 61

Indy, that's how I do my tastings...got it from Sylvia! It's less work for me and they can try any combo they want. I only offer 3 cake flavors though but several frosting flavors and if I happen to have some fillings I'll put those out too.

I fill a large glass pitcher with water and serve this with my tastings. As they are tasting I also give suggestions on which combos to try.

indydebi Posted 28 Jun 2008 , 2:44am
post #25 of 61
Quote:
Originally Posted by ladyonzlake

I fill a large glass pitcher with water and serve this with my tastings. As they are tasting I also give suggestions on which combos to try.




Oh! Oh! Oh! Me, too!! I used to offer juice, soda or bottled water, but I ran out and all I had left was water in the tap! Thankfully, I had a bag of ice in the freezer, so I filled the pitcher.

By the time I got to my third tasting this way, I was able to tell the bride, "My other brides really liked this combo or that combo...." (One loved rum cake with banana, which I thought sounded odd until hubby said, "Banana Daquairi". (Ohhhhhhhhh!)

Yeah.... all of this "less work" thing is working out great for me!!!

DebBTX Posted 28 Jun 2008 , 3:07am
post #26 of 61

Debi,
Thank you for sharing your tasting success. Your trays looked great. This sounds like a fun way for the Bride and Groom to participate in the process, and feel like they have more control and choice.

You are going to be the talk of the town! icon_lol.gif

-Debbie B.

ladyonzlake Posted 28 Jun 2008 , 3:19am
post #27 of 61

I also think this method is great because there is more interaction between everyone. I've read on here on some decorators are uncomfortable when the bride/groom is tasting their cakes and this makes everyone more comfortable.

jessieb578 Posted 28 Jun 2008 , 3:51am
post #28 of 61

YAY Debbie!! Congrats on the new tasting style! I do mine that way too, only out of laziness did I do it this way! icon_lol.gif

I couldn't imagine icing tiny cakes and trying to make them look so nice!

BTW, just in case you might not have thought of it, I laminated my tasting labels. I put my flavors landscape in a word doc and printed them in strips, one to lay under the cake and one under the icings. I only do 4 of each that the bride chooses ahead of time so it works out great.

Oh, and I'm one of those who feels funny during the tasting!! I don't want them to feel like they have to say they like it. I'm still on the fense of trying out the tasting box...we'll just have to see.

nefcook21 Posted 28 Jun 2008 , 3:52am
post #29 of 61

deby-thanks so much for sharing this with us. I wil be opening my shop in Nov. and was wondering how I was going to do the tastings. Just found out!!!

BTW it all looks yummy!

peacockplace Posted 28 Jun 2008 , 1:35pm
post #30 of 61

For those of you who do your tasting like this, do you do only one set of fillings for all the people who come? I mean the groom might not want to "double dip" with the bride's mom. I usually do plain cakes but I give a plate of fillings for each person. For those of you who do it the other way... has it ever been weird for the customers if more than just the bride and groom come?

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