Do you devour those cake decorating videos on Facebook? They are so satisfying to watch. I am great at watching a cake decorating video, trying to recreate one on my own creates a “Pinterest Fail”. I was given two complimentary passes to The Americas Cake Fair in exchange for promotion and review of the event. Enthusiastically, I said yes because I was excited to see many foodie celebrities. What I got from the Cake Fair was so much more than meeting the bakers and chefs of the cake making world. The Americas Cake Fair inspired, taught, and amazed this novice home baker.
What is The Americas Cake Fair
The Americas Cake Fair (Cake Fair) is the largest trade and consumer show in North and South America dedicated to cake, chocolate, sugar arts and more. More than 10,000 baking professionals, industry buyers, pastry chefs, cake artists, retail bakers, hobbyists and everyday foodies from around the world attend the three-day celebration, which held its inaugural show in 2015.
The exhibitor floor was filled with so many baking related companies that are popular in the cake world. Satin Ice and Domino Sugar were two of the main sponsors of the event. It was fun to explore the exhibitor floor checking out all the new technology, baking techniques, and products.
The Cake Fair is much more than a trade show though. There are live demonstrations from celebrity bakers, hands-on classes, business seminars, and there is even a sugar art fashion show! Do you like watching cake competition shows? Well, Americas Cake Fair has live competitions during the entire event!
If you are wondering if this event is for the whole family, the answer is yes! They had a Kids Zone for little bakers and I saw so many kids at this event having a blast meeting their celebrity foodie idols.
My Takeaways as a Novice Cake Decorator
Confession: buttercream frosting and sprinkles are my cake decorating go-to design elements. I went into this event thinking it will be cool to watch some of this. but I don’t really see how this event would really be a match for me because I am not a cake decorator. I was so wrong! The Americas Cake Fair is for everyone!! Now I am super excited for the next Cake Fair to come around.
Inspiration for me usually comes from Pinterest. I pin things I want to make. That is actually not finding inspiration, that is copying. Ron Ben-Israel was one of the main stage speakers. The second day he took the main stage he talked about how he finds inspiration for the cakes he designs. Obviously, he is not searching Pinterest. Ron Ben-Israel talked about taking inspiration from fashion, nature, and architecture. He then taught about using colors as inspiration and about how he plays with the colors to create amazing cakes.
The other main stage baker that inspired me was Erin Gardner. She is a cookbook author, Craftsy instructor, and owner of the blog ErinBakes.com. Erin Gardner inspired me by being imperfect. During her demonstration, she showed how to decorate cakes with common stuff every home baker can have and AFFORD! She used buttercream icing to frost her cakes instead of fondant. She also used common candies to decorate the cakes. Actually, she had volunteers from the audience to decorate the cakes, 2 of the volunteers were kids!
Through a live demonstration with Mich Turner, I learned about why cake flour is the best to use for cakes. It is all about the gluten. Mich Turner made a healthier version of a cake during her presentation and shared many of her tips and a couple crazy stories regarding her cake baking service to the elite of the United Kingdom.
All of the demonstrations had a question and answer time where you could ask the presenter anything. It didn’t matter whether you were a professional or a home baker, you were able to take something away from the presentation.
If you have the money, there are in-depth classes you can take. I saw some of the cakes people left the classes with and they were amazing!
The Satin Ice booth had 3 stations for learning how to do certain things with fondant. I made a fondant ribbon at the Satin Ice booth.
Going to The Americas Cake Fair will have you oohing and ahhing over all the cakes you will see, including the ones you can see being made in the cake competitions. You can spend hours visiting the cakes and being amazed by their details.
The main stage shows are VERY entertaining. It has to be with right? With names the Buddy Valastro (The Cake Boss), Mich Turner, Ron Ben-Israel, Nancy Fuller, Natalie and Dave Sideserf, and Emily Ellyn (<— my favorite). Emily Ellyn was the emcee for this year’s event and she kept the show fun!
Yes, you can eat some cake too! I think I got a sugar rush by the end of the day because of the cake, icing, sprinkles, and other goodies I could sample.
I had a wonderful time at the Cake Fair and was sad I couldn’t go on day 3 due to a schedule conflict. The Cake Fair is budget-friendly, you can get a 3-day pass for just $75 if you prepaid and it is just $100 at the door. That is not a bad price for a 3-day conference.
Follow The Americas Cake Fair Facebook Page so you can find out the date and location of the next Cake Fair.
Here is a slideshow with some of the cakes and moments I enjoyed! I will be writing another post just on the Sugar Fashion Show so stay tuned — there were some Disney inspired designs that I absolutely adored!