A Lesson On Clarifying The Rules....

Decorating By adven68 Updated 12 Nov 2009 , 1:53pm by adven68

adven68 Posted 11 Nov 2009 , 2:39pm
post #1 of 15

This past weekend was the Societe Culinaire Philanthropique Cake/Culinary competition at the Javits Center in NY. I spent weeks in preparation. Hundreds of dollars, hundreds of hours, a couple sleepless nights.
I was competing for the French Government medal in pastry exhibit. Anyway....I won a first place ribbon for my table, but unfortunatley was disqualified for the medal becasue of a technicality that I should have clarified beforehand.

I made a sugarpiece (a very ornate sculpted shoe on a carved pillow cake...no molds, all hand painted, etc...) which was one of 5 elements of the table. Unfortunately, they wanted a "cooked" sugar (poured, blown, etc..) piece...not a pastillage or gumpaste piece.

So, just a note to all.....some competitions allow gumpaste....obviously, some do not......always ask beforehand....even if it seems obvious to you. I lost out on the chance of a medal and a hefty check that went with it.

14 replies
-K8memphis Posted 11 Nov 2009 , 2:48pm
post #2 of 15

Oh I'm so sorry!!! Please accept my heartfelt feelings for your stunning disqualification resulting in loss. It was not in writing? In the rules? They just made it up on the spot??

cakeandpartygirl Posted 11 Nov 2009 , 2:55pm
post #3 of 15
Quote:
Originally Posted by adven68

This past weekend was the Societe Culinaire Philanthropique Cake/Culinary competition at the Javits Center in NY. I spent weeks in preparation. Hundreds of dollars, hundreds of hours, a couple sleepless nights.
I was competing for the French Government medal in pastry exhibit. Anyway....I won a first place ribbon for my table, but unfortunatley was disqualified for the medal becasue of a technicality that I should have clarified beforehand.

I made a sugarpiece (a very ornate sculpted shoe on a carved pillow cake...no molds, all hand painted, etc...) which was one of 5 elements of the table. Unfortunately, they wanted a "cooked" sugar (poured, blown, etc..) piece...not a pastillage or gumpaste piece.

So, just a note to all.....some competitions allow gumpaste....obviously, some do not......always ask beforehand....even if it seems obvious to you. I lost out on the chance of a medal and a hefty check that went with it.




well that just stinks !!!!!!!! icon_cry.gificon_cry.gificon_cry.gif but of course you are a winner in my eyes thumbs_up.gificon_biggrin.gifthumbs_up.gif I would absolutely love to see some pictures of the cake do you mind posting it or is it on your website???

mbasic Posted 11 Nov 2009 , 2:58pm
post #4 of 15

Wow! I feel so bad for you. Thank you for the reminder to read the fine print.

just_for_fun Posted 11 Nov 2009 , 2:58pm
post #5 of 15

K8, sounds almost like your wonderful experience. Was this rule in writing? Because if not, you should fight for your medal. You earned it, you deserve it.

adven68 Posted 11 Nov 2009 , 3:41pm
post #6 of 15
Quote:
Originally Posted by just_for_fun

K8, sounds almost like your wonderful experience. Was this rule in writing? Because if not, you should fight for your medal. You earned it, you deserve it.




Thanks everyone....no, the actual word "cooked" was not used...I guess in the pastry world it might be inferred?
at this point, there is no way for me to prove that I would have won if I had that piece, anyway...although it was kinda hinted to me.....

the man that won had some nice pieces, so I don't want to discredit him....

here's my shoe if you want to see it and thanks again:

http://cakecentral.com/modules.php?name=gallery&file=displayimage&pid=1513650&done=1

-K8memphis Posted 11 Nov 2009 , 5:12pm
post #7 of 15

Your shoe is wonderful--tremendous workmanship.

If I'm not careful--I'll take another downward header on my fiasco--I was really touched that you remembered Just For Fun--thank you.

But yes I mean wow I do know what it's like.

But Adven!!! I did a shoe too!!! AGHHHHH!!!!!!!

I think it's so wrong for officials to play mind games like that, Adven, so sorry. Pm me if you need a very understanding ear. I was seriously depressed for a while.

Your work is amazing.

One always deserves a fair shake at a minimum huh.

-K8memphis Posted 11 Nov 2009 , 5:32pm
post #8 of 15
Quote:
Originally Posted by adven68



the man that won had some nice pieces, so I don't want to discredit him....




Yes I know. But you did not discredit anything. If the rules are made up as we go, the process itself is tainted and it does create more problems.

"If the foundation be destroyed what can the righteous do."

You cannot create your leadership.

If the program was flawed, it disrespects each participant and itself unfortunately.

just_for_fun Posted 11 Nov 2009 , 11:04pm
post #9 of 15

Of course you can;t know for sure that you would have won, but not winning is one thing and being disqualified by an "implied" rule is upsetting, and IMO unfair.

-K8memphis Posted 11 Nov 2009 , 11:23pm
post #10 of 15

So did you get to keep your ribbon at least?

adven68 Posted 12 Nov 2009 , 12:09am
post #11 of 15
Quote:
Originally Posted by K8memphis-

So did you get to keep your ribbon at least?





Ok...I need to go find the posts on your story....sounds like it was bad. I guess the rules are written a certain way becasue most of the competitors are culinary students and teachers and they know the guidelines of a culinary competition. I will write a note to the society to suggest they add a little more detail to the rules since more and more freelancers are competing every year.

Thanks again for all your support....I have my ribbon & the memories of the passersby in awe of my stuff......for now that will have to suffice!

shoes...no more shoes!!!

all4cake Posted 12 Nov 2009 , 12:31am
post #12 of 15

Oh! How terrible! That's awesome too though...you DID win...you were definitely the chosen winner....I'm sorry the rules weren't clearer.

weirkd Posted 12 Nov 2009 , 12:59am
post #13 of 15

It really is a shame that you were disqualified for something that wasnt clear. I really would of wrote a letter to the institute stating that it was not clear on the rules that it clearly stated only Sugar, not pulled or gumpaste. If they are letting non-culinary students complete, they cant assume that everyone knows which sugar they want. And Im sure it wont really do much, but it might make them think twice about their rules and how their written.
Its not that your discretting anyone, but if it was the only thing that caused you to not, then I think it should be brought up.
I will not go into the long speal about my experiences and the heated threads on here about the whole subject. Just things like that should be more clear. You can atleast take away that you challenged yourself and your work and have taken away a learning experience and a gorgeous piece.

PinkZiab Posted 12 Nov 2009 , 3:19am
post #14 of 15

It is a stunning piece and you deserve MAD props for that!

I will say, however, in my experience, in a pastry competition that is not specifically related to cake, "sugar" or "sugar work" generally refers to pulled, poured or blown sugar, sometimes in combination with pastillage elements (but not with pastillage as the sole medium), but rarely refers to gumpaste and/or fondant. Also, higher points are usually given for use of multiple techniques on a single piece (such as pastillage with blown and poured sugar all in one display).

I agree that they should have been specific in their written copy of the rules, and it really blows (pardon my french lol), that you missed out by such a narrow margin.

Congrats on you first place ribbon--still a great accomplishment!

adven68 Posted 12 Nov 2009 , 1:53pm
post #15 of 15
Quote:
Originally Posted by PinkZiab

It is a stunning piece and you deserve MAD props for that!

I will say, however, in my experience, in a pastry competition that is not specifically related to cake, "sugar" or "sugar work" generally refers to pulled, poured or blown sugar, sometimes in combination with pastillage elements (but not with pastillage as the sole medium), but rarely refers to gumpaste and/or fondant. Also, higher points are usually given for use of multiple techniques on a single piece (such as pastillage with blown and poured sugar all in one display).

I agree that they should have been specific in their written copy of the rules, and it really blows (pardon my french lol), that you missed out by such a narrow margin.

Congrats on you first place ribbon--still a great accomplishment!




thanks...
I agree with you....I'm not from that background to have known better....but now I do. I have a whole year to master sugar-pulling...LOL

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