I received a call about 9:30 p.m. tonight from the bride's aunt stating that they had to throw the wedding cake away .
She claims that the cake was gummy or wasn't completely cooked inside. At first, she throught that it was a filling but then realized that it wasn't. Since she was the one to sign off on the cake, she felt that she should be the one to call me about this and that her neice would be giving me a call also . She states that it was so bad that the guest even threw their slices away . I informed her that the cake was completely done and it was the same as all my other cakes and that I have never had any complaints before.
When I got off the phone with her, I tried to contact the bride but did not get an answer. I then called the groom's mother and was informed by her that she didn't see anything wrong with the cake other than the fact that it was to much and that some of her family even took alot of the cake home with them. Upon hearing that, I began to feel a little better.
When I talked to the bride's mother, she informed me of the same thing, that she at first throught that it was a filling and then realized that it wasn't. She told me that she couldn't understand because she has had my cakes before and that they were good. I told her the same thing, that I made the cakes the same as I always do.
I have been racking my brain trying to figure out what went wrong and the only thing that I can come up with is that the cake must have sweated inside. The temp here was 97 with the humidity in the three digits.
Here is the time table:
1. 20 mins to load cakes and flowers in van
2. 30 mins drive
3. 30 mins waiting for someone to come and open up the place...no
4. 10 mins spent in calling bride's mother and waiting for her to call me
back letting me know that someone was on the way to let me in
5. 15 mins again waiting until someone showed up
I have tinted windows and my air conditioner was on full max the whole time but the sun was still shinning on the cakes...not a tree on the property that I could park under while waiting
Can anyone help me figure this out?
The cake is located in my photos.
how awful..he goes a bump hope someone can help u
If people actually took cake home with them I think I would ask that they bring you some of the cake so that you can determine exactly what the problem was. I would be a little suspicious myself. If it were me and it was truly that bad, I think that I would want to return some portion of the cake as proof. The fact that the groom's mother said it was just fine makes me wonder if the brides family is being honest.
As far as sweating inside...I have never heard of that so I really couldn't say. Did the cake have any sort of filling or was it filled with frosting? I am so sorry that you had this experience....you work so hard to have a beautiful, tasty product and then to have someone complain hurts!
Oh my gosh, you're totally freaking me out. I have my first big wedding cake this week and it's been so hot and humid and now it's pouring down rain. I'm so afraid that the weather is going to totally screw up my cake. I tried the faux fondant icing that has the flour in it and I took it out of the fridge and let it sit for two hours, because I figure that's how long it will be sitting out for the wedding. The cake and filling held up fine, but the icing totally "sweated" pools of liquid all around the bottom of the cake. I'm definetly going to stick with my normal icing recipe. Anyway, I'm so sorry that this happened to you, weather can be a real pain. I hope you get it all worked out.
Seems to me that if the cake was that "gooey" inside it would have collapsed on itself. That is a heavy cake and it wouldn't have held up without being completely done.
I saw in your pics that you filled this with buttercream. It seems to me that you would have noticed that the cake was not done or gooey when you torted the cakes. I also agree with gibson6 that the cakes would have collapsed if it was gooey. This sound suspicous to me.
Couldn't they eat it? HMMMM
Maybe they try to get some money back. If I were you I would try and get some cake from the groom's family to see for myself.
I think that you've made enough cakes to know when it's done inside. I also agree that it looks like that cake would have collapsed if it wasn't done. Maybe you could request to see some of the cake that was brought home. I would think that they would be eager to show it to you if in fact there was a problem. Hmmm, doesn't sound quite right to me.
First of all let me say that all of your cakes look so beautiful and I can tell you take the time to do your VERY best with each and every one. This is kind of a touchy subject with me because I actually stand beside the oven with all of my cakes and make sure I get that VERY slightly mind you, just barely done texture. I do this because people seem to go nuts over it. My grandmother used to call it a 'sad streak' and she tried to achieve it in all of her pound cakes because it would make such a moist cake. But I know that low and behold, one day it's going to backfire and I will get someone who doesn't thinks it a great technique and they will figure I'm trying to poison them with raw cake. It sounds like it could have happened accidentally in your case and since it was a wedding, some people loved it and some didn't. But as Gilson said,, and perhaps you should point out, in order for a wedding cake to hold up for travel and layering, it HAS to be thoroughly cooked. Don't worry too much, Steph.
The cake was absolutely beautiful! It looks fine in the pictures to me. I agree with the others....something is strange about this.
The MOB agrees with the aunt that something is wrong, yet the MOG states it was ok and people took plates home with them???? And I agree that if the cake wasn't fully cooked, it would collapse upon itself.
Could it have been one cake out of all of them wasn't completely cooked??? Could the bc icing have seperated and 'liquified', saturating the cake and causing them to think it wasn't cooked?
Ask for some of it back to try to figure out what happened, offer a discount or refund some of the money, but I wouldn't give a full refund. You have too much time spent on the cake and it was beautiful.
That really sucks! I looked at your cake and it looks beautiful. I know alot of work was involved in making it. Secondly, the fact that you had to wait so long to get into the building is just not fair. Your time is valuable too and that was really inconsiderate!
The cake is a tough call. If you have regular customers telling you there was a problem with the cake, you wonder what the motivation would be for them to make it up. It does sound very odd, though.. Were the cakes torted so you could see in the middle if the layers were cooked all the way?
If you decide to issue a refund, I certainly wouldn't refund all of the money seeing that people were taking leftover cake home with them..it obviously wasn't inedible! Let us know what you decide to do..Sorry you're going through this. The cake really is beautiful.
things to think about:
who bought the cake? Meaning, who ordered it? don't do anything until THAT person complains.
And stick by your gut feeling - if the bride's side fo the family says it was horrible, but the groom's family says people took it home with htem, I don't think you owe a refund for anything. If the cake was good enough for people to take home, you have done your job.
I'm with others here, the cake wouldn't have hold up like this if it wasn't cooked through!!!! Ask to see a piece of the cake, I'm sure it's just a trick to get money back!!!
Your cake is gorgeous!!!! Like always!!! You're a great decorator (sometimes I'm jealous of your cakes ) Don't let them bring you down before you SEE for yourself what was the problem!!!!
If there was a problem with the cake they should have saved some of it to show to you and not sent it home with the guests.
It sounds like they bought too much cake and were annoyed because they probably paid per serving so they are trying to get some of their money back. That's why I don't like to use the overly generous serving charts because alot of people hate to have cake left over and feel like you sold them too much cake so you could make more money, when actually you were just giving them bigger servings - but the caterer didn't cut them bigger so there were leftovers.
I might give these people some refund just to make them happy, but without proof it wouldn't be a large refund. Sadly some people just aren't honest!
I agree with everyone else...something seems a bit "fishy". Your cakes look fantastic and I think someone wants some money back. It does seem like the most resonable thing for them to do is bring you a piece of the cake so that you can determine what the problem is. You don't go to the grocery store or any retail store without something to prove there was a problem with the item so it makes sense for them to bring you some cake. Good luck and I'm sorry you have to deal with people like this.
Your pic said these were 3 layers each - now if you torted a 3" cake to make 3 layers, you would have noticed if the cake was not done. Heck, without a piece of it from the complainers as proof, I would be very reluctant to refund any monies. What kind of filling was inbetween the layers and could they have thought that was undone cake? Also, there were 3 different cakes, which one did they seem to have a problem with? BTW< it is a beautiful cake and setup!
Like everyone else has said, the cake is beautiful! Great job on it! First of all, I am in the majority on this...IF the cake wasn't done, it certainly wouldn't have stayed together. The cake would've caved in on itself. With as much filling as was done on this cake, YOU would've been able to see "unbaked" portions of the cake yourself. Sounds like somebody wants a refund when it isn't due. I would get in contact with the person that actually ordered and paid for this cake. Find out THEIR thoughts. Sounds really, really fishy to me. Good luck!!!
Like everyone else, my first reaction is to stand your ground, the cake was beautiful. But as I try to put myself in your shoes, I know I would react differently than I say I would. I'm sure like me, you take cake problems personal. I would be soo upset! I also wouldn't want bad word of mouth about my cakes! To have a huge cake with lots of people (poss. future buss.) make someone unhappy, would cause me to lose sleep!
Even if I knew the cake was done, or that the heat from not getting let in the building caused it, I would refund a portion of the money to make them happy. Explaining, I stand behind cakes, I truely feel it was baked properly, but if say it wasn't , I will take your word. Ask them what they want. Maybe they just want $50 back. If they want somthing out of control back like half, then start negoteations, as half is unfair to you. Maybe offer to do their next 2 birthday cakes free of charge, to prove your skills to their family.
An unhappy customer will tell 10 people the story, a happy one will hopefully tell 2.
I'm so sorry this happen. Hopefully a good noghts sleep will give you the answer.
Sorry I cant spell and you suffered through, I'm still pushing spell check to CC
When I had my businees (which started out as an inncocent custom cookie business) I loved it. Eventually, people asked me to make cakes. I did this pretty well, but evertime there was a complaint, my confidence dropped another level. Even my best cakes were made with trepidation and fingers crossed and kept me up at night.
Now cookies, they are a breeze for me. And I've never had a complaint. Also, I LOVE doing them. They never give me one bit of indigestion (lol). I don't obsess about them because I am very good at them. Lesson learned: I don't do cakes professionally anymore ( I guess I should change my screen name back to Cookieman at this piont!).
Stephanie--I know my answer doesn't help much, but I just wanted to share my story to make a point. Some of us are great at cakes, others at cookies...and the rest of the population buys our stuff. If you know you are a good cake baker/decorator and have confidence outside of this one situation, keep on bakin'! I, on the other hand, started hating making cakes. That's the difference.
Good luck in future endeavors. I'm sure you'll be fine!
I smell something rotten. Sounds like a scam to me. Your cake is absolutely gorgeous. I had a somewhat similar situation that I posted on cc.
I had a customer who wanted a cake for a baby shower. She had had a sample of the cake flavor before placing the order. Almost all of my cakes have some form of liquor soak, so I was really surprised when she informed me that the day of the shower no one had been able to eat the cake because of the alcohol content. I apologized and offered to discount the cake. She declined the offer, but requested a "good" price on a future order she had placed.
When I called about 2 wks previous to delivery, she mentioned that she thought that the baby shower cake had also been somewhat stale. I advised her that I make all of my cakes no more that 2 days before the event.
Because of the previous complaint, I left out the soak for her next cake. When I delivered the cake, at a discounted price, she was thrilled with the design of the cake. She called to her husband to come see the cake. She introduced me as the lady who had made that wonderful cake for the baby shower.
To say the least I was taken aback. I also learned about some of the devious methods some customers will use to get a discount. How should I handle this customer in the future??? To drop or not to drop, that is the question.
Well needless to say, I dropped her. Sorry for your trauma, but it sounds like they are the problem and not you or your cake!
Thanks everyone for your wonderful support...I really needed it!!!!
Thank goodness that I had batter left over and did an 8" and froze it. I'm going to test it out using the same icing and see what happens.
I haven't heard anything from the bride yet.
Each layer was 1 1/2" in height so that I wouldn't have to torte.
I just can't understand if the cake wasn't done, then why did the groom's side take cake home?
I've learned from this; from now on, I will make a 4" sample to take with me to let them try at the set-up.
My next wedding cake is due Aug. 19 and is basically the same cake.
Once again, thanks for your support and will keep you posted
I wouldn't bother with that 4" sample cake. That's just free cake for them and more work for you and it really doesn't prove anything. Just because a 4" cake is done doesn't mean that a larger cake is. And most of the time when I set up a wedding cake there is no one there to try it anyway and if they are there they are too busy getting ready to eat cake.
Just trying to help. I hate to see you go to more trouble than it's worth. A wedding cake is enough work as it is.
Good luck. I hope you get this straightened out soon because I know it worries you.
Oh Stephanie I am soooo sorry for this situation your in. I have little advice except to say you are a great baker/decorator Please don't let this shake you on bit.
Did you happen to know anyone who attended the wedding? Perhaps they can shed a little more light on the subject.
If it were me, I wouldn't offer a refund unless they brought some of the cake. Especially if some of the people said the cake was fine. Sounds to me like they are trying to get reimbursed for it.
And if it turned squishy and sweated because of the weather, well, that happened after the cake was out of your hands. If it was fine when it left your bakery, and happened afterwards, you can't be blamed for that.
Your cake is beautiful!!!
I think some people might not like the dense texture of a cake and think the cake was not done. I have made recipes like the white almond sour cream cake which turns out very dense and moist. When my nephew tried it he was like: ewh... this cake is raw! and my kids immediately said: "it is not raw, it is a dense, moist cake...delicious!
I do not like the way this sounds, and my opinion is that, because there was so much left over, they are trying to get some of their money back. I would also contact the groom's parents and see if I could get a sample of the cake to try for myself.
Stephanie, your cake is beautiful just like all the others. Ditto on non-refundable cake. If it didn't taste good to begin with they wouldn't have "hauled" it home to eat later.
steph---do not waste your time on a 4in cake, you know that your cakes are done & you know that this time sounds fishy-----your cakes are beautiful---trust yourself!!!!!!!!
I agree something sounds fishy...... if they didn't take a picture of the inside of the cake or bring you some to show you, I wouldn't offer the refund. I would ask to speak with both the bride & groom too to find out their opinions. The fact that the groom's mother told you something different makes their whole story fishy. Have you told them that the groom's mother said people liked it and took some home and she saw nothing wrong with it? Not that you want to start the families fighting, but you could say that you do not offer refund b/c of difference of opinions - some people liked it and some didn't. Did you do a tasting with them? If you did I would tell them that the flavor of the cake is the one they picked out and that if it really was undercooked, it wouldn't have been able to hold up and would have collapsed on itself. It was perfectly fine when you last saw it and they did not mention anything about it "falling over" or "sinking into itself" - so you will not offer a refund. You might want to say something too about how you were left waiting for someone to show up and that it took a lot of time away from your day and you didn't charge them anything extra for that time........... Good luck! Hope it all goes well! I'd love to hear how it ends!
I also agree that something doesn't sound right. Especially if the groom's family took cake home. Even though the bride's family had been customers before I'm doubting that they had purchased a wedding cake from you before and so they are probably just upset that they had too much cake and are trying to get some of their money back. I wouldn't commit to any sort of refund until they can show you what exactly was wrong with the cake. I hope this works out for you, I know I'd be crying my eyes out! Let us know what happens!