Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Cake Boss: The Next Great Baker: Cakes for a Queen

by Amy K. Bredemeyer

I just noticed that the cake in front of Buddy in the opening titles has figurines of all of this season's competitors! How neat! Well, we're down to the wire now. Just the finale to go, and it's bound to be exciting! The finale last season was pretty neat, as I really enjoyed watching the finalists try to run the bakery and sell their own wares at Carlo's. I think that the remaining contestants all have a great shot at becoming "The Next Great Baker," and I'd root for all three under different circumstances. But, enough about the predictions, let's look at why Chad is no longer in the running. Well, he certainly showed some great skill with making a large cake mostly on his own in eight hours. Too bad he didn't see past the fact that the client was a beauty queen. I think that the assessment that his cake would be great for a wedding or a Sweet Sixteen was spot-on, and I'm sad that he didn't give the other aspects of the customer into consideration, since I think he might have busted out something rivaling the other cakes. Looking at the sketches, I thought Ryan had it in the bag. But, he thought the same, and his ego was just a bit too inflated throughout this challenge, don't you think? Marissa's early struggle really made me doubt her overall ability, but you have to remember that Buddy sometimes takes a while to come up with an awesome idea for a cake. I thought that Nadine had some good design aspects in her cake, but I also thought it could have been a big larger. Keep reading for more details on what happened!

And, let us know who you think will be The Next Great Baker over here to enter to win a cupcake plunger!

Cake Boss: The Next Great Baker "Crown-Winning Cakes" (S02E09): Chad still thinks that Marissa is the one to beat, and Ryan thinks he's a shoo-in for the finale. [I've been finding it interesting all along that Nadine isn't asked what she thinks about the remaining contestants and her chances, but maybe her responses are just boring so they're not shown?]

Baker's Challenge: Make a modeling chocolate rose. Buddy is known for it, so you gotta know how to make sugar flowers. None of the competitors are really experienced with this, as Ryan has never done it at all, Chad hasn't really tried it, Nadine has only made flowers one petal at a time, and Marissa tried it twice when she was in school. In five minutes and eleven seconds, Buddy is done, and it's gorgeous. The contestants have 15 minutes to do this, and the winner will get an edible printer. [nice!] Buddy watches as they work. Nadine's flower is the worst, and Chad comes in third, due to a poor center (he liked his own work, tho). Marissa finds flowers to be tedious [they are!] but she comes in second, as hers is well-balanced. This leaves Ryan in first, due to the ton of petals he made. Marissa isn't thrilled. [she and Ryan have such an ongoing feud!]

Elimination Challenge: It's a free-for-all, which thrills Ryan. The guest judge/client is Miss USA, who was previously Miss Teen USA and is from New Jersey. Chad is excited because he knows her background and loves pageants. [...he already knows her background? Is he super into pageants or what?] The cake is to celebrate the client and what she loves, so Buddy demonstrates how to ask a client what they like. Miss USA likes cooking, traveling, is a girly-girl, and loves gowns. Buddy gives the competitors ten hours to build an appropriate cake. The girls sketch, Ryan measures, and Chad goes straight for supplies. When there are four hours left, Buddy comes to announce that he's going to take away two hours of their time (worrying the girls much more than the boys), BUT, some of the losers from this season will be helpers for the remainder of the time! [I figured we'd see some of the old contestants again - who did you expect?] Buddy pairs up Ryan with Melo, Marissa and Jasmine, Nadine and Heather M, and Chad and Wes. [whoa. Wes is here. so the entire show was probably filmed before any of it aired... interesting. I guess I had figured that they'd start running it on television half-way through or something. guess not.] All four of our competitors are happy with their assistants. [impressive. I wouldn't have expected everyone to be happy with their assistant since there were so many clashes early on... but maybe Buddy just thought it all through so much that it didn't much matter.] Oh, and the cakes don't have to be delivered for once. Grace joins Miss USA as guest judges.

Nadine [27, NYC] wants to focus on travel. She's never constructed the base on her own before, so that's a major obstacle. After Heat M arrives, she puts her to work on the suitcase. She also has Heather print out edible "colorful flags" for the cake. [I thought it was funny that she went for pretty flags and not countries the pageant queen has likely been to or can identify.] In the end, Nadine's cake tells a story but is a little small, and the girly-girl part also didn't really come out. [I don't know that it needed to, though, since so many other areas were captured.]

Marissa [24, Pompton Lakes, NJ. and we just found out this episode that the reason she hasn't listed what she did before and just talked about her background in culinary school is that she was fired from her executive pastry chef job for having an attitude!] struggles to come up with a design, so she starts with the structure... though she struggles using the tools. Marissa takes nearly 90 minutes to come up with a design, but still isn't sure about her idea or the colors. [that's a LONG time. at that point I'd probably go see what two other people are doing and combine their thoughts, LoL.] She asks Chad about her design, and asks Ryan and Chad both about whether the client said she likes to cook or just likes food. [the variance in how each competitor understood the client's interest amused me!] When Jasmine arrives, Marissa has her work on an assortment of tasks, and the finished cake really shows the client's journey, with Italian and Jersey roots, etc. Grace says that the color of the suitcase didn't "pop," but both Nadine and Marissa have the top cakes, according to Buddy.

Ryan [30, Rhode Island] is doing a suitcase, some fashion and makeup, and a little food . [a nice combo of Miss USA's interests. But, Ryan's "they're screwed without me" attitude got old]. His plan is for a really big, 500-pound cake. [good thing he doesn't have to move it alone!] With Melo around, Ryan assigns him to make a dress form, which he then has to ask to be dressed up a little. Ryan's cake is clean, but rather scattered and does not have a lot of detail. It wasn't "special enough." [interesting choice of words.] His vision is just disappointing. Ryan claims that he's a go-getter and will do whatever it takes to succeed, while Chad's cake wasn't even what the customer wanted. Ryan is spared. 

Chad [43, Dallas] is really fired up about this cake. He's planning six tiers full of feathers, ruffles, pink, and bling. ["all the girls I know in pageants." um, the drag queens? or does he have friends that do mainstream  pageants as well?] Ryan and Nadine are concerned that Chad's cake is too pageant-y, especially as the loads of sparkles and touch of feathers really put it over-the-top. Chad has Wes work on adding small details to the cake. Chad thinks that Ryan will have to go home because his cake looks unfinished. Well, the judges decide that the bottom layer in particular is great, the overall cake is pretty, but it has too much bling and not enough about the client. Grace points out that the cake was too wedding or Sweet Sixteen. [agreed.] The work is flawless but the design doesn't fit. [a shame, really.] Chad says that he is more technical, very diligent, hardworking, a leader, and his heart is in it. Still, he's sent home. In the box truck, Chad says he isn't too disappointed, since he's gained so much from the experience.
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1 comment:

jaylen watkins said...

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