Tuesday, November 3, 2009
Food Network Challenge - Finally!
If you've been following our blog, you know we've had a long relationship with TV's Food Network Challenge, but not one that has culminated in an actual competition. Until now. Over the past couple of years Rick has turned down numerous challenges presented to us by the show due to commitments to our clients. Flying to Colorado for compete on a relatively short amount of notice just hasn't been in the cards for us because we get bookings well in advance and it's heartbreaking to have to cancel anyone. The last time we were approached was for an October date. October as in "Rocktober", which just finished, and there was no way we could possibly do it. Very few people know that we also had to decline an invitation to compete in the Ultimate Cake Off on TLC around this same time. We were thankful to be asked but couldn't do both at the time and had already committed to Challenge. We were all determined to make it happen and as luck would have it a new challenge appeared that we were not only able to make, but VERY interested in the challenge topic, which is all we can say about it. We're not at liberty to discuss any of the details of the Challenge, and neither is Rick's wonderful assistant, Anne (Annie) Welch, who has graciously agreed to collaborate with Rick in the competition.
A little about the Fabulous Annie Welch! Annie is a truly gifted cake designer who has been making cakes for about 20 years. She owns Cake-O-Rama, which is a name you probably recognize from the internet, and is well-respected in the cake community. Aside from being an awesome cake artist, Annie had the good fortune to do something that many people dream of. She interned with Mike McCarey who owns Mike's Amazing Cakes. Mike is considered by many to be the best cake sculptor around and who regularly appears on Food Network Challenges as both competitor and judge. Annie designed cakes at Great Cakes and Edible Monuments in Redmond, Washington off and on for 10 years. Rick worked at Great Cakes and Edible Monuments during our time we were living in Seattle, and that is where he first met and was inspired by Annie. Sadly, Great Cakes and Edible Monuments closed its doors in 2003, the year after Rick and I had moved to L.A. where he began working with Joan Spitler and Leigh Grode at Cake Divas. Annie was unable to make it down to L.A. for our wedding and we haven't had an opportunity to see her since we left Seattle. Prior to accepting our invitation to assist in the challenge, Rick and Annie were pulled together by the forces of the universe when we were both approached by AOL's "Holidash" for a feature called "Bizarre Birthday Cakes." cakelava and Cake-O-Rama had numerous cakes on the site, which also featured Charm City Cakes, Pink Cake Box and others. Annie's tremendous talent is evident in photo after photo.
Lastly, though she will be the Assistant, and Rick Reichart the official Competitor in this particular challenge, Annie is no stranger to the Food Network Challenges and has been approached a number of times over the years to compete, but the circumstances and timing wasn't right. She and Rick are now ready to bring their A-Game and we all couldn't be more excited (or nervous)!
Join us tomorrow to see the Tiki cake. We briefly interrupted our programming today and will resume with the regularly scheduled cake musings tomorrow. Aloha!
Labels: Cake Challenge, cakelava, Food Network Challenge