dukeswalker Posted 7 Mar 2012 , 9:26pm
post #1 of

If there is something you just refuse to make... how do you explain/justify it to a customer?

37 replies
Texas_Rose Posted 7 Mar 2012 , 9:31pm
post #2 of

"I'm sorry, we don't make any ----."

Or, "We can't do copyright characters," or, "This is a family-friendly business, and we don't make naughty cakes," or, "I'm sorry, I don't do cakes with a drug theme," or whatever the situation calls for.

If you know or know of a local baker who does make the requested item, you could refer the customer to them...but don't feel like you have to.

leah_s Posted 7 Mar 2012 , 9:49pm
post #3 of

ditto.

Me = "I'm sorry, but I don't offer sheet cakes."

leah_s Posted 7 Mar 2012 , 9:50pm
post #4 of

Actually, I don' t start that sentence with "I'm sorry." No apologies.

AZCouture Posted 7 Mar 2012 , 9:51pm
post #5 of

I refer people out occasionally with cakes I'm not interested in working on. You don't have to make an excuse up, just plitely decline and have a couple of names ready to refer them to.

jgifford Posted 7 Mar 2012 , 10:02pm
post #6 of

You don't have to explain or justify anything - - just tell them you don't do ______ cakes. End of story.

erin2345 Posted 7 Mar 2012 , 10:59pm
post #7 of
Quote:
Originally Posted by leah_s

ditto.

Me = "I'm sorry, but I don't offer sheet cakes."




What is wrong with saying sorry? You don't want to come across as bit**y, and you want them to come back to you next time they have a cake you can make! If I can't do it, I say "I am SO sorry I am booked that day/don't do that kind of cake, but I would love you to keep me in mind for your next special cake! Sorry again!" Nine times out of ten the person replies back to me thanking me for my response. And they always email me again in the future to order a cake I can do. If someone replied to my earnest request with a curt "I don't do that" I would be offended.

dukeswalker Posted 7 Mar 2012 , 11:23pm
post #8 of

The thing I just don't want to do is make a Red Velvet cake. It is part of a large wedding cake and the bride wants one tier to be red velvet. I realize it is a very *hot* flavor right now but I just can't bring myself to use the necessary amount of red food coloring without shuddering. Do you think I should explain why? I don't want to come across as incapable...

erin2345 Posted 7 Mar 2012 , 11:30pm
post #9 of

Haha - I have the same problem - I just don't *get* red velvet cake!! But I make it and people love it, so who am I to judge! I would make an exception just this once icon_smile.gif

Price Posted 7 Mar 2012 , 11:37pm

I have used Martha Stewart's Red Velvet recipe. It was pretty good and didn't use so much red food coloring. It's not the bright, in your face red, but still a red velvet.

cakelady2266 Posted 7 Mar 2012 , 11:44pm

I don't do or offer naughty or adult themed cakes.

Cakery2012 Posted 8 Mar 2012 , 12:01am

As someone allergic to food colorin I would object to using alot of red also. I have not tried the natural ones . Country Kitchen Sweetart has a website anf they offer natural food coloring.
They also have pre cut parachment paper. Someone ask for it last week but I dont remember who.

Goreti Posted 8 Mar 2012 , 12:03am
Quote:
Originally Posted by dukeswalker

The thing I just don't want to do is make a Red Velvet cake. It is part of a large wedding cake and the bride wants one tier to be red velvet. I realize it is a very *hot* flavor right now but I just can't bring myself to use the necessary amount of red food coloring without shuddering. Do you think I should explain why? I don't want to come across as incapable...




I thought I was the only one who had an issue with the necessary amount of red food coloring. For some reason, my daughter loves red velvet. I finally broke down and made her one but told her right off the bad that I would refused to add all the food coloring. Do people realize how much food coloring it takes?

FromScratchSF Posted 8 Mar 2012 , 12:23am
Quote:
Originally Posted by erin2345

Quote:
Originally Posted by leah_s

ditto.

Me = "I'm sorry, but I don't offer sheet cakes."



What is wrong with saying sorry? You don't want to come across as bit**y, and you want them to come back to you next time they have a cake you can make! If I can't do it, I say "I am SO sorry I am booked that day/don't do that kind of cake, but I would love you to keep me in mind for your next special cake! Sorry again!" Nine times out of ten the person replies back to me thanking me for my response. And they always email me again in the future to order a cake I can do. If someone replied to my earnest request with a curt "I don't do that" I would be offended.




People aren't going to not order a cake from you in the future because you didn't apologize to them for being booked. That's ridiculous!

Apologizing for every little thing puts you in a subservient position. You are acting subordinate to your customer (i.e. DOOR MAT). Men don't act this way... ever. In business you are much more respected by only apologizing for actual mistakes then if you were bowing and saying"sorry" every other word because you can't accommodate every order, request and whim of your customers.

As women it's in our nature to apologize for every little thing and I fight it myself, but thanks to my wonderful husband he set me straight about this (as well as lots of studies confirming it). If I say "Sorry, but I think XYZ" he's like, "Sorry for what? Having a brain?" icon_biggrin.gif And he's right. Anyway, especially if you are dealing with a man the more you say you are sorry for stupid stuff, the more subservient he will instinctually think of you, i.e., treat you like crap and expect more and more.

In my business I now make sure I never apologize for stuff unless it's an actual mistake that is MY fault. Not the florist's fault, or the coordinator, or the venue... but mine and only mine.

sweetkake Posted 8 Mar 2012 , 12:40am

I feel the same way about the red food coloring so I use the Waldorf Astoria Red Velvet Cake. It uses beets to get the rich color. Really good.

AnnieCahill Posted 8 Mar 2012 , 12:49am

Leah also doesn't do red velvet, FYI. icon_smile.gif

Nothing wrong with saying you don't offer a specific thing. I would never do a fountain and columns cake with plastic stairs and plastic wedding attendants, LOL.

karateka Posted 8 Mar 2012 , 12:53am

I would search out a recipe that uses a natural colorant, like beets.

sweetkake Posted 8 Mar 2012 , 1:00am

I stand corrected. The Waldorf has a very good recipe but not with beets. This is the link to the recipe with beets. Doesn't sound appetizing but it's great.

sweetkake Posted 8 Mar 2012 , 1:02am

Sorry, I must be more tired than I thought. lol Here is the link.
http://bakecakery.com/2011/03/16/red-velvet-cake-with-beets/

cakesbycathy Posted 8 Mar 2012 , 1:17am

Just say:
That's not a flavor I offer.

thumbs_up.gif

carmijok Posted 8 Mar 2012 , 1:25am

So how much red food coloring are you putting in there? My recipe calls for 1tsp up to 1 ounce depending on your preference That's not that much considering how much batter there is. My cake is bright red too and quite delicious. No red chemical taste. You might think about putting less cocoa in too. I just use 2 TBL.

I guess if you don't want to do it, that's your choice. But it's her choice to want it and she will just spend her money with someone else who will do it. It seems to me I could put aside my personal preference and do what the customer wants. She's going to get it somewhere and it might as well be you!

dukeswalker Posted 8 Mar 2012 , 1:37am
Quote:
Originally Posted by sweetkake

I feel the same way about the red food coloring so I use the Waldorf Astoria Red Velvet Cake. It uses beets to get the rich color. Really good.




I've made this one before and I could just taste this earthiness to it - actually, I more SMELLed it.

I almost feel like I need to forewarn possible clients who want RV about the insane amount of food coloring involved in it. I was thinking something along the lines of...thoughts??

Middle tier (center tier):
In the last year I have actually stopped offering Red Velvet cake as the sheer volume of food coloring required to obtain that true, rich red color left me feeling squeamish. In all of my recipes I try to use natural ingredients and red dye was a sticking point for me. I've tried cherry juice and even beets with less than stellar results. However, if you have your heart set on Red Velvet & Cream Cheese buttercream as an option, I have a tasty recipe and I will gladly bake that up for you.

Bridgette1129 Posted 8 Mar 2012 , 1:48am
Quote:
Originally Posted by sweetkake

I feel the same way about the red food coloring so I use the Waldorf Astoria Red Velvet Cake. It uses beets to get the rich color. Really good.




I just bought beet powder to try out! It is the most beautiful color.

mommachris Posted 8 Mar 2012 , 2:13am

A bride last year asked for a Red Velvet cake in response to my e-mail about flavor choices..it wasn't on my list for a reason, lady.
Not being the least bit snide, but wanting to please her tastes, I replied asking which version would she be interested in trying, the one with 1/4 cup of red dye in a chocolate cake or an old fashion buttermilk version with beet juice.

She changed her mind to classic white.
Good choice, thumbs_up.gif

mommachris

dukeswalker Posted 8 Mar 2012 , 2:15am
Quote:
Originally Posted by mommachris

A bride last year asked for a Red Velvet cake in response to my e-mail about flavor choices..it wasn't on my list for a reason, lady.
Not being the least bit snide, but wanting to please her tastes, I replied asking which version would she be interested in trying, the one with 1/4 cup of red dye in a chocolate cake or an old fashion buttermilk version with beet juice.

She changed her mind to classic white.
Good choice, thumbs_up.gif

mommachris




thumbs_up.gif

Sassyzan Posted 8 Mar 2012 , 2:49am

You could offer it w/o food coloring and call it natural velvet or naked velvet or brown velvet or something.

Ask her what she likes abt the cake. If it's the color, you're out of luck, but if its the texture or the flavor or the cream cheese icing, there is room for negotiation.

Bridgette1129 Posted 8 Mar 2012 , 4:00am
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sassyzan

You could offer it w/o food coloring and call it natural velvet or naked velvet or brown velvet or something.

Ask her what she likes abt the cake. If it's the color, you're out of luck, but if its the texture or the flavor or the cream cheese icing, there is room for negotiation.




I saw some cupcake shop that had a brown velvet.

FromScratchSF Posted 8 Mar 2012 , 4:17am

My red velvet has it's own unique flavor that people love, and I don't pair it with cream cheese icing. I pair it with unflavored SMBC and raspberry preserves. Its divine. I also only use about 1/4 the red coloring called for in the recipe - by using coco rouge DP cocoa powder with very low ph and some other twists handed down to me from my grandma, my cake turns a nice light brick color and is one of my top sellers.

AZCouture Posted 8 Mar 2012 , 5:12am

Oh ha!! Raspberry preserves and RV cake. I thought my clients were the only weirdos on earth who chose that...guess NOT! Love it! I thought it was odd when people would pair those two together at tastings (out of all the combinations they could make). When 4 or 5 people since the first time have chosen it as well, I knew it must have been good. Exactly like that J, unflavored SMBC with the raspberry preserves. I still haven't tried it myself, I just took everyone's word for it.

AZCouture Posted 8 Mar 2012 , 5:15am

I rarely suggest CC filling either. Usually white chocolate SMBC, or toasted coconut and caramel. Now, try THAT and see what ya think. icon_wink.gif

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