Cakes Collide!

Birthdays bring lots of joy. The gathering of friends, the fun parties, the wonderful gifts, the kind messages on your social media, and of course the cake… All joy! But have you ever wondered what would happen if you had more than one cake that day? How about SEVEN? Yep! That’s what we did 😀

On Henry’s birthday this year, we were waaaay too busy to go out or do anything big, so we invited our friends to a small ‘Birthday  Cake Tasting Spree’ party. What does this entail you ask? Very simple: Instead of a gift, everyone brings their favourite cake (it can be one they bake, or one they buy: just as long as it’s their favourite cake).

Now, if all your guests play the game well, you will find yourself surrounded with the best cakes in the city. And who would refuse that? In order to make the game more fun, we gave prizes for the top 3 cakes. They were to be judged based on taste (of course), presentation  (it has to please the eyes), and originality. Check out our judging ballot below.

[Mariam: I have to admit, I am a bit of a snob when it comes to cakes (or any food really, but even more so for desserts). Generally speaking, I’m rarely impressed by cakes in Canada and the USA. I find them too sweet, full of shortening, and lots  of added cheap butter. But that changes when you go to a decent pastry place or when you bake it yourself. So the idea of a cake tasting was absolutely exciting for me. This would enable us to taste the good stuff in Montreal].

[Henry: Me, by contrast, I’m less of a snob. I mean, I much prefer good quality food whenever possible. That said, there are times when I either have no problems enjoying factory-made stuff, or may even crave it (it’s really, really rare – but when I want instant noodles, it’s like an obsession. Fortunately, as I say, it’s rare 😅). For these cakes, however, I was definitely hoping for the good stuff 🙂 . Good thing people obliged!]

The Results

Let’s face it: In a cake tasting contest, nobody really loses 😛 . There’s obviously top-ranked and not, but we’re not going to give out any rankings below third place. So, without further ado:

The runners-up:

Chocolate cheesecake from IGA grocery 

Harry Kim vanilla cake from Obsession Bakery

So…. yeah… This is an inside joke of a cake. It’s funny only to Henry and the person who brought it, and absolutely no one else in the world. We’re not going to bother explaining it. You just had to be there 😛 .

Homemade chocolate candy cake, homemade by our friends J & A  

There were supposed to sculpted figurines of Henry and Mariam on it, but, uh, they melted 😛 . Still, the chocolate cake inside was really moist!

Toasted coconut cream cake, homemade by our friends E & D

This was a work of unfettered patience. Look at the density of the coconut flakes! It was an awesome, awesome cake 🙂 .

In third position: Chocolate mousse by pro chef Alessandro:

Chocolate mousse with a hint of basil from ITHQ

This cake was impressive visually – it felt a bit like a visual illusion when it was first unveiled. And when we tasted it, the basil in the cake made for a very pleasant surprise! Quite original! Great cake for viewing and for eating!

In second position: Mango and raspberry cake from CSweet:

Garden cake with layers of fruit purée 

So this cake was a revelation. It was an organic cake, moderately sweetened, and full of subtle hints of the flavours that went into it. This cake was quite delicate and light, and runs counter to the usual heavy cakes you’d normally find. No shortening or cheap butter here! No wonder it came second!

In first position: Gluten-free black forest from CSweet:

Black forest cake made with almond flour

So, CSweet finds itself in the winners’ circle twice on this list. Those guys are definitely doing something right! This black forest cake had tempered chocolate decorations, and the body of the cake itself was all almond flour, making it gluten-free. It was moist, rich, and creamy, and the chocolate was neither too sweet nor too bitter. It was all just right (which, we suppose, is why it won…).

We tried them all. And man alive, were we ever full after this tasting. We were full to the point of being on the ground. There was no space for dinner or anything else after it.

Totally worth it though!

And that was our cake tasting party. We invite you to check out Alessandro Masi’s Instagram (and to try his amazing pastries) as well as CSweet – we love their work! Have you had one yourselves? If yes, please share your pictures! We’d love to see them!

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