Lisa Porada left a successful career on Wall Street to follow her passion—cakes! So, after training in chocolate, pastry and cake design, she founded Chocolate Carousel in 2003, an award-winning bakery in Wall known for its custom creations. We caught up with Lisa to find out more about her show-stopping wedding cakes.
What should I consider when choosing a baker?
Insist on high-quality ingredients and freshly baked cake. Some bakeries freeze their cake for weeks, but ours are always fresh. Ask about baking and delivery teams. In the event of an issue, you want a large, experienced team that can deliver on time. We bake more than 2,000 wedding cakes each year, so we’ve got you covered.
How do I decide on a wedding cake style and flavor?
First, decide on your wedding theme and color palette. This will help you narrow your options. We can help you choose a cute custom design to reflect your unique personality or a clever twist to a traditional cake. Most brides still favor three tiers, but some couples are choosing four tiers to serve more. We’ve even created cakes as tall as eight tiers.
How do wedding cake tastings work?
A tasting is a fun opportunity to try new flavors. We assemble a remote tasting box for you to take home. You’ll choose several mix-and-match cakes, frostings and fillings along with a scorecard. Most couples make a date night of it. Think outside of the box and be open to new flavor combos.
What are your most unusual custom cake styles?
You name it, we’ve created it. Some couples choose a pet theme with peek-a-boo dogs and cats. Or sports teams, superheroes, hobbies or the couple’s monogram. Our most elaborate was a Downton Abbey cake that matched the wedding cake from the television series. The strangest was a zombie cake with fondant body parts. Choose your cake carefully because it will be a centerpiece at your reception and will live in your photo album forever.
Are groom’s cakes popular?
Yes! This is a wonderful way to honor the groom at the wedding or rehearsal dinner with something unique that reflects his personality. We’ve done themes like Taco Bell, Stanley Cup and even a life- size replica of a Weimaraner dog.
What does a basic wedding cake cost?
In New Jersey, it ranges from $6 to $15 a slice. What affects the overall cost is cake size, unique flavors and detail of design. Labor on a custom cake is the biggest factor. Generally speaking, the smallest three-tier classic buttercream cake for 70 guests would be about $420. We can create anything including gluten-free, vegan and sugar-free cakes.
Any ideas for party favors?
Everybody appreciates a treat when they leave the reception. We can create custom sugar cookies that reflect your theme or even a breakfast mini crumb cake or pastry to be enjoyed the following morning. We also do fantastic donut walls.
Did we hear that your daughter is getting married?
Yes! My daughter is planning an October 2022 wedding and I’m already planning a cake that makes a WOW statement. But don’t ask me for details because it will probably be a surprise even to her!—Susan Brierly Bush