Wednesday, September 23, 2009

CakeStar meets Ace of Cakes!!

I entered a contest with A&P markets, which I found by reading the Charm City Cakes Blog. I had to submit a short essay describing my favorite birthday memory. Here is my submission:

My Family Rocks

For my 30th birthday a few years ago my family threw me a surprise birthday party. The theme of the party was 1980's candy. It was great! We had pop rocks, pez, rock candy, candy straws, and lots of other fun stuff. I was surrounded by friends and family and felt very loved. The attached picture is from my 1st birthday. Although I don't remember it, my family has always made our birthday's special. Thanks for a chance to possibly meet duff. I have a great amount of respect for the work that his bakery does. It is amazing. I make cakes for my friends and family and it would be a dream come true to be a part of the A&P 150th birthday celebration. You can check out my cakes at

That was it, short and sweet. That got me selected as one of the 50 winners from over 800 applications. Pretty Cool. It wasn't until I was at the event that I realized how lucky I was... I think my baby picture sealed the deal... I'm pretty darn cute. When I got the call from Paige telling me that I won, I was in disbelief. I think I said to her 4time- "Seriously?". It was one of those moments when you are like- is this really happening? Do people actually win these contests? I was on my way to dragon boating practice when I got the call. When I arrived to practice I bounded out of my car and announced that I just won... I was so excited!!!

Duff and Geof were exactly like they are on the show. Geof is laid back and duff is excitable and lovable. Duff MC'd the event and told us a little story about how we was connected to both A&P and Blue Bunny. He grew up in Sandwich, Massachusetts and the A&P was the only thing in the town which was his life saver. His connection to blue bunny is in the magic of it's ability to motivate his staff to be more productive. He believes he can get two or three more hours out of Geof if he offers him ice cream.

I took pictures of the day and have laid them out in photo essay of sorts... I hope it captures my excitement. It wasn't just the fact that I got to meet Geof (and Duff), I also got to be part of a charm city cake event. Duff and Geof likely don't show up event together too often so I feel lucky to have been a part of such a fun afternoon.

It all started at 7:30am. I drove to Hoboken. I parked and took public transportation over to Manhattan. On my walk to the path train in Hoboken, I stopped at Carlo's- home of the Cake Boss. It is a real bakery with beautiful pastries... They were getting ready to take pictures or something that morning for the show so they had security and lots of stuff in front of the bakery. It was open so I went in. I saw two of his sister and his mom. I didn't talk to them, they looked really busy but I did get my picture taken with some of the bakery staff. I don't watch the show enough to know if they were ever on it (probably not) but at least I can say I was there... I didn't eat any pastries- I didn't see any low fat or low cal anything- it is a bakery! so I bought some water and went on my way...

Here is the Cake Boss bakery- Carlo's - All the production equipment was out on the side walk....

Some staff at Carlos's. Buddy's consult area was to the left in this picture.

The inside of the bakery

Buddy's mom walking into the bakery

New Jersey Transit was welcoming me to the Hoboken Terminal...

The view of the empire state building from the Hoboken side of the river.

The hoboken train station is pretty cool... Beautiful old train station...

The event was held in the Boathouse Restaurant at 72nd & 5th Street in Central Park. I navigated my way from Hoboken to 33rd St station to central park (Special thanks to my cousin Anya for here navigation consultation on Monday). I was set to go and didn't get lost...

Here I am, I have arrived... At this point I only knew of Duff being there but then all of the sudden out of the back of the parking lot- Geof made his way into the restaurant. I was SOOOOOOOO excited! It was confirmed. I would get to meet Geof. Don't get me wrong- I love Duff like everyone else. But Geof is more my man- quite, sincere, a great-dry sense of humor and I imagine having good meaningful conversation (of course I don't know him but this is in my mind...).

As soon as we got in we got in line to get our picture taken with Duff and Geof! Very Very Very exciting!!! One of the staff took my camera and took these pictures for me. It all happened so fast that I didn't think to put my arm around Geof. Duff gives you a bear hug and Geof came in on the side. I shook their hands and introduced myself and said something to the effect of I love your work!

After the pictures we mingled with the staff of blue bunny and A&P then we found out seats. I sat with a mother/ daughter pair from Connecticut or Massachusetts that I met when we were waiting outside. the mother's name was Sundae, she was really nice and her daughter was really excited to see duff. They served wonderful hor devours and a fabulous lunch. Here are the the pretty center pieces on the table. Hydrangea's are my favorite flower...
I didn't really get a good picture of the cake in the beginning so I went back and took a few more...
The cake took a little over 80 hours to complete. They had 2 cake deliveries in NY on Tuesday. I can't remember where the other one was going but obviously this was the more important one since we had both Duff and Geof. Duff said he is making a new rule that there will be no cakes on Tuesday because that means they don't get their weekend... And they like their weekends...

Elana made all of the little ice cream containers.

This fan brought Duff and Geof a cake. It had the staff laying on the beach. I think they were excited to get it but I doubt they will eat it... They are surrounded by cake all of the time...

The CEO of A&P Markets cuts the first piece

Duff sounding the horn on the truck. Geof was working with some dry ice. Because it was an ice cream truck they wanted it to look cold and were going to put the dry ice in the back. They ultimately decided not to do it so we settled for some more horn blowing and lights flashing...

Duff talking about Geof installing the horn

Duff still talking about the cake

I asked duff if he would be tweeting about this event. He said he would and that he tweeted for the first time yesturday. I said I know I saw it!

The first piece cut

The paper had details of A&P's beginings

The A&P sign on the top of the truck rotated. The light in the lamppost flickered. The street signs were authentic to the area where A&P started same with the backdrop buildings. They added a lot of detail....

The back of the truck was open. I guess because of all of the electronics

During lunch they rotated pictures that the 50 winners uploaded with their applications as well as some pictures from of delivery trucks and store fronts over the 150 years of A&P markets. I uploaded my 1st birthday party picture with chocolate cake all over my face. Very cute picture I must say, which is why I think they picked my application... Here is my baby picture on the monitor

Duff Talking with my baby picture on the monitor in the back ground

Moving the cake back to the kitchen to cut
My piece of cake. It was surprisingly moist. I thought since it was a stacked cake that it would need to be more of a pound cake consistency but it was really light and moist. It was marble flavored. The buttercream wasn't as sweet as the kind I make so I was looking for a little more sweetness. Overall, I would rate the cake very tasty. The ice cream was really good. The two together tasted awesome!

This link will be updated with the grandprize winner's information as well as pictures from the event

Here is a recap of the event from a Blue Bunny employee's perspective. She has a blog called the Sweet Life

Overall, a caketastic day!!! Thanks to A&P and Blue Bunny for making it possible!!!