October 30, 2008

The Habers

Where to start on this one? This was the cake(s) of the year! Jason and Lindsey had a non-traditional (and may I say awesome) approach to what they wanted for their wedding cake. As soon as they found my site and saw Franks Donut Cake, they emailed me. They both were set on having 6 separate donut cakes as their wedding cake. We collaborated for a few months on designs and flavors and this is what resulted.

First up is my favorite Simpson's-Movie-inspired donut. Lets name it the homer. The Homer consists of Red Velvet Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting.

This Choco-sprinkles donut consists of Chocolate Fudge Cake with Vanilla Buttercream.

This WALL-E caramel iced donut consists of Caramel Swirled Vanilla Cake with Vanilla Buttercream.

A shot of all six cakes- at left center is the jelly donut consisting of Vanilla Bean Cake with Raspberry Preserves and Organic Raspberries. To the right is the EVA chocolate iced donut consisting of Chocolate Fudge Cake with Milk Chocolate Buttercream and Organic Raspberries.

This donut consists of Toasted Coconut Cake with Lemon Curd.

Many blessings Jason & Lindsey!

The Haber's Wedding Donuts created September.26.2008

Photos courtesy of Erin Beach Photography.

October 27, 2008

Art is in the Air

The Imagine Bus Project's goal is to bring visual arts education to K-12 inner-city students, most of which are low-income, where arts education is lacking. They offer high quality, culturally sensitive art classes (such as digital photography basics, printmaking and arts and crafts) which in some cases are held on their mobile art studio, the Imagine Bus.

Artist Danielle Lawrence with students on the Imagine Bus

At the IBP's annual gala benefit, Art is in the Air, skilled artisans design and create one-of-a-kind pieces to be auctioned. This year local artists created intricate handmade mirrors. Here is my favorite:

Here is the Imagine Bus in what I like to call 2.5 Dimensional (and edible) form:

Dark Chocolate Cake with Milk Chocolate Buttercream and Raspberries

Talented Photographer, Christopher Greco, held a photoshoot to help the guests feel extra special...

red velvet mini cupcake with cream cheese frosting

And the man who made the gala happen effortlessly, the fabulous Brian G!

Imagine Bus Cake and Mini Cupcakes created October.15.2008

Photos courtesy of photographers Christopher Greco & Gene Kosoy.

October 19, 2008

Mark and Michael

October has been the busiest month yet this year. Lots of events/galas and cakes! From a gluten-free dacquoise cake for Jaye to Mark and Michael's wedding cake.

Mark, Michael and I worked together to create an elegant and masculine non-traditional wedding cake for their intimate ceremony. What resulted was an ivory and chocolate brown cake with mahogany accents.

Although all cakes made are completely custom, this design is a first for me. The bottom tier consisted of two cakes, same size but different flavors, stacked directly on top of each other to create a taller-than-usual tier. The bottom half consisted of Chocolate Fudge Cake with Milk Chocolate Buttercream and the top half, Vanilla Bean Cake with Vanilla Buttercream. The groomsmen's' top tier consisted of Dark Chocolate Cake with Milk Chocolate Buttercream since they both are chocolate fiends (or chocolate-mongers). =)

Congrats Mark and Mike!

-M&M's Wedding Cake created October.18th.2008

September 28, 2008

Macy's Passport 2008

Dolce & Gabbana? Oscar de la Renta? Gucci? What about Chanel? NOPE! Instead San Francisco fashion day gets Tommy Hilfiger, Calvin Klein and Ed Hardy. Again, I repeat, Ed Hardy. Tacky-tattoo-art-on-your-shirt-instead-of-your-skin for $187 Ed Hardy. Needless to say, no couture here but I cant complain...  its all for charity. 

In over 26 years Macy's Passport has raised awareness and donated more than $27 million towards saving lives of those living with HIV/AIDS. And for years Home Restaurant has participated in catering the event but this time I took the helm. I decided to create 700 bite-sized variations of desserts I've featured on my menu: New York Style Cheesecake with Dried Cherry Compote and Citrus Bars with Vanilla Meringue (Lemon Meringue Pie).

Fortunately Michael, Lauren and I had a chance to view most of the show, taste some sweets and watch the Jabawockeez perform- OMG.

Desserts for Macy's Passport created September.18.2008

Tan Wedding

Designing a wedding cake is usually a months long process in which the cake designer collaborates with the groom-and-bride-to-be to create a unique cake that best expresses the theme and feel of the wedding with the given budget. But sometimes that process happens over a few days. This cake from conception to birth took only 2 weeks, if that.

Classic Vanilla Cake with Vanilla Bean Custard, 
Sliced Strawberries and Vanilla Buttercream

Bryant knew exactly what he wanted when he contacted through our mutual friend, Robin. A Cherry Blossom, "Strawberry Shortcake" for 200 guests for his brother's wedding- I mean, cake for a gift? Is there a better gift?!

Photos Courtesy of Jerome Tobias. Hey Jerome, this is my favorite shot- you rock!

The Cakemonger in action! How's my technique?

Tan Wedding Cake was created September.20.2008

August 30, 2008

Happy Birthday Corndog

Need i say more? 12" Corndog consists of Vanilla Bean Pound Cake with Dark Chocolate Buttercream. Sweeeeet! Happy 25th Chris!

-Chris D's Birthday Cake created August.29th.2008

March 31, 2008

Bon Voyage: Confidential

I'm not sure how much info I'm allowed to reveal about the recipients of this Bon Voyage cake but it was for two fabulous chefs- an executive and pastry chef couple, A and A.

I was given almost complete freedom on design but was asked to create some sort of airplane or San Francisco landmark. I decided to go with the airplane idea and give it a playful feel with two passengers' heads popping out the top of the cockpit. The cake consisted of Caramel Swirled Tahitian Vanilla Bean Cake with White Chocolate Buttercream.

-A and A's Bon Voyage Cake was created March.30th.2007

March 17, 2008

Academy of Friends Gala

1200 mini cupcakes might seem like a lot of work, but imagine having to frantically repair more than half of them on-site because of damage during transport... now thats a nightmare! And thats exactly what happened February 24th 2008 the day of the Academy of Friends Gala. Academy of Friends was founded in 1980 as a private oscar party of 25 friends but has grown to become one of the largest contributors to Bay Area HIV/AIDS services organizations. The '08 Gala raised over 500,000 and AOF has raised over 6.3 million over the past two decades.

Our original goal was to make 1500 cupcakes as suggested by the event organizers but after an impromptu decision to arrive two hours early, 1200 mini cupcakes it was: 600 Vanilla Bean with Vanilla Frosting and 600 Dark Chocolate with Milk Chocolate Buttercream.

AOF Veteran/ Martini Stealer Michael and I holding
Vanilla Bean Cupcakes with Vanilla Frosting

The decor was beautiful and the guests were entertained by acrobatics, 007 sketches and singer Taylor Dayne. Just a few minutes of mini-cupcake touch-ups, and they were ready for display and eating, of course. After rhythmically shaking my head to Tell It To My HeartBeautiful, and some other 80's hit I was unfamiliar with, the party was over with plenty cupcakes to spare. 

February 18, 2008

Susannah's Birthday Cake

Since Carl was organizing a birthday party for his wife, Susannah, at Home Restaurant, Carl commissioned me to create a cake inspired by her artwork. He requested a Vanilla Bean Cake with Vanilla buttercream as the smaller top tier and a Dark Chocolate Cake with Milk Chocolate Ganache as the larger bottom tier but left the design of the cake up to me.

After looking through Susannah's online gallery, i was inspired by her use of soft pastel colors and seemingly innocent characters contrasted by overtly erotic images.

Though the image I chose to recreate was more on the subtle side, it was one of my favorites! The expression captured by Susannah is right on. To check out her artwork, visit SusannahBettag.com.

-Susannah's Birthday Cake was created February.7.2008

January 27, 2008

Shinmin Li and IDC

Shinmin Li established I Dream of Cake in San Francisco's beautiful North Beach District in 2005, though she began work with custom cakes in Sydney, Australia in 2002. After her time at the School of Visual Arts in NYC, where she developed her skill in graphic design and further deepened her love of art, Li attended Le Cordon Bleu in Sydney where she earned her degree in Grande Patisserie in 2003. Shortly after, Li set out to combine her two loves into what is known as the first Gallery of Cakes.

Walking into her gallery, you are surrounded by a clean, chic elegance that is inherent to Li's style. Having ingeniously designed the space with a white and warm espresso scheme with sea-foam green accents, the main focus is drawn to the art, in this case, sculptural cakes.

Although all of IDC's cakes are exquisite, some of their most impressive cakes are their handbag cakes. Made indiscernible to the real thing, these edible masterpieces are my favorite.

On a personal level, Shinmin is the ultimate professional, perfectionist and is very knowledgeable when it comes to art and business. Having developed her company into one of the nation's best "bakeries," working at IDC is my dream job.

In a recent email I asked Shinmin where she saw herself and her company in 10 years. She sees a few more locations for IDC (might I suggest I Dream of Cupcake?) and a couple of museum exhibitions. How about a Beethoven bust at the DeYoung?

...Or how about a Jade Buddha?

...Or perhaps a (delicious and probably nervous) doe?

Finally, after being asked how she would describe her style, Shinmin replied, "Clean, refined and perfect! Blah blah blah ;) ." Kudos to you Shinmin Li and the IDC team- You go girl(s)!

Special thanks to Drew Altizer and 
Dwight Eschliman for all the gorgeous photography.
Photographs are used with permission and 
full copyrights do apply

Visit Shinmin's newly redesigned 
website www.idreamofcake.com and make sure to check 
out her blogspot www.sugar-moma.blogspot.com.


Update: I just found this video of an interesting series from CHOW.com titled OBSESSIVES. Li chats about wedding cake trends, spills cake secrets and confesses her obsession! Scandalous!

January 1, 2008

Frank's Donut

After searching far and wide for a giant donut for her boyfriend's birthday with no success,  Megan decided to commission her awesome friend (me) to make her an extra-large-donut cake. Megan knew right away that she wanted a key lime flavored element, raspberries and some sort of pound cake so i suggested a Classic Vanilla Pound Cake with Key Lime Curd and Raspberry Jam. 

The result was a cake that looked so close to the real thing, that i was left not craving a cake, but a huge chocolate donut!

-Frank's Birthday Cake was created December.29.2007