December 2017 Magazines 89123 - Page 59

There’s a lot of history in this bakery. What’s kept you both involved in the business? We practically grew up in the bakery. We’d hang out with grandma and grandpa at the location on Tropicana and Eastern when we were just little kids. It was like a second home, and they’d let us bake and help where we could. The first thing I (Max) ever made was a bagel with colored sprinkles on it. A bagel looked like a donut to me at that time so the sprinkles made sense! Both of us broke off to do different things before even- tually coming back to be a part of the family business. It was important to us, as it had become of part of who we are as people over the years. Our families were involved, Sarah’s dad being the head baker for many years, so it made sense that her husband Anthony, who is a trained chef, take over that role. Max took over operations in 2006. We think of the bakery as an entity all its own, not just a business or place that sells cookies, cakes and baked goods, but rather a place that has become a tradi- tion for other families who’ve been customers for years. What changes have you seen over the years? We’ve seen a lot of changes in the industry, even in the relatively short time we’ve been running the bakery. There was the cupcake explosion, the bagel phase and, of course, the style and trends of wedding cakes has changed dramatically over the years. We, as third generation family members now running the business, challenge ourselves to stay relevant and move with the times. We keep up with the trends and designs while concentrating on the quality of both product and services. We also have been fortunate to take advantage of other opportunities that keep us relevant, including the VEGAS CAKES series we recently filmed that is now airing on Food Network. We’re always trying to push the envelope. It’s what keeps people coming back and the bakery successful. Tell us about VEGAS CAKES. How is it different than most cake shows? Anyone that watches the Food Network knows there are many baking competition shows, most of which highlight a lot of the techniques used to decorate and make cakes. Unlike the cake challenges you’d normally see on TV that are in a controlled kitchen and being timed, VEGAS CAKES take you through a day in the kitchen of Freed’s, for a period of a week at a time. Besides seeing all that goes into creating the over-the-top cakes our team puts together, you’re introduced to the back story of the events and families the cakes are being made for. Each cake is part of a celebration, and we show the connec- tion between these unbelievable cakes that have been created and the surprised reaction of their recipient. It goes back to the family aspect of the bakery, where we try to be a part of these celebrations. Some of the cakes were made for events that we as a company sought out, while others took a basic cake that may have been ordered for a standard birthday celebration, and we ele- vated it for the customer. The Unicorn cake that has gar- nered more than 5.5 million internet views was originally a $40 order that was taken to new heights for one lucky little birthday girl. It was amazing to be a part of her excitement; it’s something our business has been about since the beginning. Running a bakery and filming VEGAS CAKES had to be challenging. What was it like? The VEGAS CAKES experience was a big challenge that brought our already tight knit team of bakers and deco- rators even closer together. So many aspects needed to be considered for these cakes, from conception to engi- neering the mechanics of the cakes; even delivery and transport was very intense since many of the cakes were quite large and intricate. We filmed 10 episodes, working one week a month for each episode until completion. It was stressful and hard work, usually 60 hour weeks or longer since we still had our regular bakery duties to fulfill, but with each person taking a specific role and jumping in wherever they were needed, we created masterpieces we sometimes still can’t believe we pulled off. You can see what we’ve done on VEGAS CAKES, Sunday nights 11 p.m. Eastern time, 10 p.m. Central. Now that your back to “normal” what’s happening in the bakery? Right now we’re prepping for the holidays, baking ornate ging W&'&VBW6W26V6W2&W&rf 6r6W2FvFRBG'rFVWW"Ч6VfW2g&VFrWG&7&&W''7&V6VW6Pg2vR֖vBfRBFVvFN( 2&&GBvFFRfW'FvVW&Fb&W'2Fr( 06v&R7GVffrƖF6R&w22RFB7@ƖF6V6v^( &Rv&r2f֖ǒF7&VFPFRv2bFR6V6f"W"7W7FW'26WFpvRrƗGFR&B&WB)x`S