Burgh Brides Q&A: The Wedding Cake

Ensure your big day ends on a sweet note with this dessert advice from our local wedding expert. 
Wedding Cake Rose


How much should we budget for our wedding cake?
The cost of a wedding cake varies greatly depending on the number of servings and tiers, the intricacy of the design, the ingredients used and other factors. Generally speaking, the larger the cake and the more complex the decorating, the more expensive it will be. Remember to allocate for other cake-related expenses such as taxes, the delivery fee, cake-cutting fees, cake-stand rental, a cake topper and a knife set.

When are we supposed to cut our wedding cake?
If you’ll be serving cake as the dessert course, you should cut it immediately after the first dance and just prior to the start of toasts and dinner. This gives your caterer or venue ample time to slice, plate and serve the cake. Of course, this can be adjusted based on your reception’s schedule and your personal preferences. These days, many couples skip the formal cake cutting (or the wedding cake itself) altogether!

Fondant or buttercream?
Ultimately, the choice comes down to what you want your cake to look and taste like. If you are dreaming of an intricately decorated cake, fondant is the way to go — its clay-like texture makes it great for sculpting. However, it can be difficult to cut through with a fork and a lot of people don’t enjoy the candy-like taste. If a flavorful cake is what you’re after, buttercream might be the better choice; it can still be used to create patterns and decorations, but many prefer its taste over fondant.

How many cookies do we need?
While the cookie table is a widely loved Pittsburgh wedding tradition, opinions about the quantity of cookies differ greatly. Die-hard cookie fans say to plan for a dozen per guest, but this is usually overkill. Six to eight cookies per person seems to be a good rule of thumb. This amount allows guests to enjoy treats at the wedding and take some home, without leaving you with a ton of leftovers. Remember that not everyone in your crowd is a cookie lover.

Victoria Deardorff is the owner and editor of Pittsburgh’s wedding blog, Burgh Brides (burghbrides.com). Look for her Q&A column in Pittsburgh Magazine.

Categories: Beyond the Cookie Table