First, full disclosure: When it comes to wedding cake, my primary expertise is in eating it. But as a professional DJ in the Orlando area, I see a lot of wedding cakes and thought I’d share my observations with you.
Years ago, traditional cakes were multi-tiered with bridges and fountains. They were beautiful, but it always made me nervous watching a couple cutting the top level of a $600 cake (the average amount couples spend on their wedding cake these days) that was balanced on columns of plastic with water underneath. Today’s traditional tiered cakes tend to have the layers stacked directly on top of each other, which I think is more stable and easier to cut and serve. The tiers are getting taller – often 8” and 6” – which makes for overall taller cakes.
The professional DJs in Central Florida on the Marc Burgess team agree that the most popular alternative to a traditional cake is cupcakes. Creative bakers can arrange the cupcakes in towers so they look like a traditional wedding cake, or use another design for a different look.
One of my favorite bakers, Effie of Effie’s Culinary Delights, told me: “I think the reason cupcakes have become more popular is that people want something different. Cupcakes can be just as cute or fancy as a cake, and there are a lot of options for design, taste and size. There is so much variety, you can have just about anything you want.”
We’re also seeing cake balls and other desserts at weddings, along with bakery boxes so guests can take these sweets home to enjoy the next day.
Other trends our DJs in Orlando have noticed include:
• Color. Brides want lots of color everywhere – and the cakes are getting brighter and more dramatic.
• Design elements from other parts of the wedding. The invitation or part of the design of the bride’s dress are being replicated on the cake.
• Tier shapes and heights. Bakers are getting creative with combinations of various shapes and heights of cake tiers.
• Flavors. The trend is moving away from traditional white or chocolate cake to a wide range of flavors for both cake and fillings.
Of course, the trend that never goes out of style is to choose what you want: a cake that tastes great with a look you love designed especially for your special day.
What's your favorite flavor of cake? Leave a comment below to let us know.