Happy Easter!

Some ideas for a wedding and easter day to wish you Happy Easter a litte bit late!

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It is a documentary and cooking reality show transmitted on Real Time and centered on the activity of Valastro’s Italian family: confectionery and cake’s making. In particular the program follows the life of Buddy (Bartolo) Valastro, Carlo’s City Hall Bake Shop’s owner, a bakery placed in the small town Hoboken, NJ. Every episode shows two thematic cakes’ making trough the work of all the family and the other collaborators.


Buddy’s dream is to make the “Carlo’s City Hall Bake Shop” a brand known all over the world, like his deceased dad wanted. The bakery was born in 1910 by another Italian confectioner named Carlo and it was taken over by Buddy’s dad in 1960. It was the most popular confectionery in New York, famous in particular for its baked puff pastry rolls with cream filling and its extraordinary cakes.  When Buddy’s dad died the activity passed to his son who soon became well known for his cakes which are famous for their particular forms and resemblance to reality. Every request you have, he will be able to realize: from car shaped to Statue of Liberty shaped  ones. For the bakery’s centenary the Hoboken’s mayor named its road “Carlo’s bakery Street” and now the store is popular between stars and very rich people that request very particular cakes for important occasions: cakes that are able to move, cakes that can spit out fire, cakes that let out fireworks and so on.



Through the usage of modern materials Buddy is able to create cakes like very artworks: a sort of colored plain pastry (named “plastic chocolate”) covers cakes and allows him to make a lot of sophisticated decorations like flowers and others more complex made also with cereal pastry. All you see on his cakes is eatable!

These are some of the most particular cakes made by him:


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FOCUS ON: Real Time

Real Time is an international TV network proprietary of Discovery Networks Europe. The channel, started only on Sky, arrives in Italy through the free satellite platform TivùSat and the terrestrial foxglove. It is broadcasted 24 hours in 24 and tells in a carefree and light way free time in all its forms, talking about trends, relationships, home, trips, wellbeing, fashion, beauty and good food.

The programs visible in Italy at the moment are:

“Cortesie per gli ospiti”

“Wedding planners”

“Paint your life”

“Cerco casa disperatamente”

“Vendo casa disperatamente”

“Ma come ti vesti?”

“Chef per un giorno”

“Malattie misteriose”

“Cucine da incubo USA”

“Abito da sposa cercasi”

“Grassi contro magri”

“Matrimonio all’italiana”

“Chirurgia XXL”

“The cakes’ boss”

 “Dimmi di sì”


How it is linked to wedding stuff?

Talking about lifestyles, Real Time suggests some interesting programs about wedding stuff, trying to advise on it and to inform in a amusing way about the work behind this world.


    Directed by Angelo Garini and Ezio Miccio, Garini della Sforzesca’s owners (society for events and special weddings), this program tells about the secrets used to organize wonderful weddings. Thought complex and  several operations they show how to organize a wedding from A to Z giving it their special touch.  Garini, architect, and Miccio, designer, joined their competences giving life to their organization of special weddings: the spaces’ study, their use and the attention to details and styles are mixed to create original and suggestive scenographies. The love for the beautiful in all his tone is on the stage. Every moment of the day becomes an opportunity to amaze and entertain the brides and their guests: from the welcome ceremony to the cake’s cutting, the masterly lights and colors’ game, the surprising use of flowers and compositions make the “party” an unforgettable day.  So Garini and Miccio unified their two professionalisms: the first with his spaces’ study and use, the second with his attention to every stylistic detail. The philosophy of the couple is to realize every wedding with the same care of a theatrical premiere. Their love for the beautiful and art permit them to put on mountings from the more sophisticated historical reconstructions to the more modern and dynamic settings.


Probably every bride wants to know the prices of their work.  To have the participation of these two wedding planners, or wedding designers as they want to be called, is a real privilege, over than an onerous choice: they don’t work for less than 10.000€. Generally wedding planners get a commission on the operations done (from 5% to 15%) or a budget for their consultancy between 700 and 2000€. Some of them get the 10% of the total costs.  Garini and Miccio reckon in the cost their presence during the wedding and some decorations, like floral embellishments, but the costs easily rise as far as arrive to 20.000€. Asking them if they don’t think to be too expensive they answer that they optimize the budget: the same operations done by yourself probably should cost more. I’m quite doubtful about this…

Who are they exactly?

   Angelo Garini, from Milan, graduates in architecture at the Politecnico of his city. His passion for decoration, art and antique leads him to work in the field of interior design and period settings’ renovations. Following his love for flowers and good food realizes projects for scenographic mountings combining the life’s space with the reception’s moment.  

   Enzo Miccio, from Naples, transfers to Milan where he graduates at the European Design Institute. He starts his career in the fashion’s world and in the table’s mounting.  He loves to organize his events with the opera’s theatricalism caring for every detail like on a photographic set.


This sort of reality is on the stage from a little time so we don’t know too much about it. It tells about the organization of young Neapolitan couples’ weddings. Parallel to the tale of the way which will take the brides to the altar, the cameras go into the wedding dresses’ atelier and document the life into the laboratories, the dresses’ preparation and their show, the ambitions and the desires of the dressmakers of Naples. This program shows a wedding’s kind very different compered to the one showed by Garini and Miccio, giving more importance to the traditions and most of all telling about the feels and the lifestyles of the people behind the scenes: not the planners, but the professionals that give them the working materials!


   This is another reality which shows up one of the most moving moment before the wedding’s ceremony: the wedding dress’ choice. The location is the atelier Klenfield Bridal, the biggest one all over the world, in the heart of Manhattan. The qualified staff follows the bride step by step trying to make friend with her telling secrets and giving inspirations. 


It needs a more complex tale.. so see you soon at the next post!

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Cupacakes’ mania!

Are you fed up about the usual wedding cake? Don’t worry, there is a solution: a very strange tendency from United States  is able to make your dessert particular and original without renouncing to the taste and the beauty of the classical cakes: cupcakes. Cupcakes are nothing other than muffins covered by sugar paste. They are all placed on a solid structure similar to the levels of a cake or on others structures such as flowers and chandeliers to make it yet more original and scenic.

Cupcakes are a good opportunity for cake-makers to free their creativity and fantasy: they can mix colors and decorations and also add some decorative elements between every sweet such as petals and candles.  This is a way to modernize the ceremony and also to save money:  cupcakes are more practical than cake and it’s also easier to get the right doses for the guests! Everything depends on bride’s desires: are they linked to traditions or not? 

What’s the draw of cupcakes over the more traditional wedding cake? Everything is cuter in miniature! So, they are cheaper, cuter and more versatile than cakes. This is a very revealing example of the influence of trends on wedding stuff.

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Cake-designers overview

“The sugar art, the art of spectacular cakes’ decoration with glaze, like sculptures”

In the sweet Italian world of desserts a new profession is making way: cake-designer’s job. It’ a real boom: people with different backgrounds and from disparate sectors aspire to become confectionery’s artists. The cake design’s art was born during ‘800 in Britain, when a mix of sugar and rose water (then replaced  by egg white) was discovered. When it was dry it became a sort of white “frost”, similar to ice and for this reason called  “sugarice”. Used for the first time during queen Victoria’s wedding, it started to be called “royal ice”.

This profession doesn’t have to be confused with pastry chefs: surely there are a lot of cake shops, bakeries and laboratories able to provide a good cake’s decoration service, but very often this job is exercised at home or in small stores in which cake designer has all the instruments and the materials. The professional cake designer doesn’t have to know how to prepare the cake, he only has to be able to make it beautiful, unique and perfect. To cover the cake with sugarice it’s not the only thing the cake designer is able to do: he shapes puppets, flowers, bows and everything you want. It’s out and out an art of sculpture! The question is: it’s possible to find a compromise between supreme creativity and Italian taste? It’s probably the eternal conflict between creativity and concreteness.

Searching on google cake designer, you’ll find a lot of names of famous artists and a lot of courses to become an expert on this sector. It’s probably the tendency of this age: a lot of experts on lifestyles and aesthetic elements creep in on tv, web, magazines and so on. Professional people can help you to organize your wedding ceremony from A to Z, choose your daily and nightly look, teach you how to prepare a good welcome to your visitors, furnish your house and so on. We’ll try to understand the reason of this enormous success.

The idea of someone who can be able to choose the best for you probably comes from American excess and stars’ lifestyle. Everything has to be perfect and spectacular but you haven’t the necessary time to do all without the help of someone who concentrates all his attentions on it. This is the reason why a lot of people trust on the aesthetic taste and capacities of the experts of this sector: time + perfection ‘s ambition. The cake designer’s profession meets perfectly these requirements, giving people what they want: spectacular cakes that will ever remain in the guest’s memories.

Accuracy, creativity, originality, ability, patience, talent are the essential qualities of a cake designer to realize customer’s desires and to show themselves in this world full of competition.

On this site there are some of the most important names of Italian cake design:


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Sensational thing

When wedding cake meets wedding dress…

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Cesaro Atelier slideshow

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A CESARO ATELIER’s experience (part 1)

Probably nobody knows where Valmadonna is, but everybody heard about Cesaro Atelier. Since 1970 to the present it has been one of the most popular ateliers in this area and not only thanks to the many collaborations with other regions.  From the production of wedding favors to the production of wedding dresses, on 2008 Cesaro atelier expanded itself including the luxury restaurant “Principe Rosso” designed by Olga Lattanzi. With the intention to offer personalized, exclusive and tailor-made wedding dresses, this atelier makes possible for a bride to be unique and beautiful. A professional team is ever on hand to suggest you the wedding dress that enhance your figure.

This is a beautiful sentence that I found on the official website:  http://www.cesaroatelier.it/home/ita/home.html

“Mi dà una grande gioia vedere gli abiti prendere vita indossati dalle nostre spose, penso che ogni abito nasca per una sola sposa, quello che facciamo noi è creare e proporre modelli unici che incontrano spose uniche” M. Cesaro


My personal experience

Day 1

When I arrived at Cesaro atelier I was surprised by the beautiful scene of the park and the building’s architecture. It’s like to be plunged into a fairy-tale dimension in which the fountain, the vegetation and the environment create an harmonious atmosphere.

Going into the atelier you find yourself in a room full of every kind of wedding favors . All around you there are colored and particular objects to be used as favors for a special wedding and not only: there are favors also for baptisms, degrees and so on. You are only spoilt for choice.

You can choose depending on the color, the design and even the utility of the object. Flowers, ash trays, vases, frames, silver pets, candles, sweet confections bags, glass objects are only some of the all favors in the room.

I want to mention particular cake toppers that surprise me for their creativity and originality. This couple of brides is joined by magnets that allow them to kiss. They are particular not only for this strange capacity but also for their style: they don’t look as classical dressed brides.

Carrying on the visit you arrive into the heart of the atelier: the room of wedding dresses.  There are a lot of beautiful male and female dresses but the number  isn’t the most surprising thing. On the contrary the most amazing thing is their peculiarity and originality.

It striked me that there are a lot of particular colors, stiles and tissues. Paolo Cesaro , owner’s son, showed  me the cult of the year: black female wedding dresses and accessorizes designed by his wife! He said me that unexpectedly they had a lot of success.

Day 2

Interview to Mattia Donato, chef

I had the pleasure of meeting Cesaro atelier’s chef Mattia Donato while he was cooking for a wedding. He was very kind to me and he answered to some interesting questions:

–          Who choose the menu? Customers or chefs?

“We try to satisfy everybody orienting them to the same menu. There are customers more sophisticated than others, but we try to explain them that it’s impossible to content the personal tastes of every guest. For this reason we suggest a menu capable to satisfy the most refined tastes. Everybody like it: from the oldest to the youngest.”


–          What dishes are essential on the wedding table? 

“Cocktail di gamberi con salsa alla pinacolada, tartare di manzo profumata al tartufo, fagottini dal cuore fondente e porcini al timo con riduzione allo zafferano”


–          What courses are the most elaborate and complex to make? 

“There isn’t a course more complex than other. They have all the same time of preparation and the same difficulty. The only things that can be considered “difficult” are the weddings of Southern people because they have a lot of guests to satisfy!”


–          How does provider’s quality matter for your job? 

It’s very important to work with fresh and full quality foods. Provider’s quality probably counts for 70%”


–           Do you consider difficult your job? 

“It’s not very easy. It needs a lot of organization. You can’t make mistakes because people have to eat! In addition we work a lot of hours and weekends practically don’t exist for us.”


–          What’s the dish that you can make better? 

“Probably risotto. Some time ago I also wan a price for it”


–          What are the essential qualities of a chef? 

“Passion: you have to like what you do. Patience. Sacrifice. You have to find the bright side in everything, in every problem.”


–          How did you become a chef? 

“A lot of work changing different places. Experience.”


–          Why do you have decided to become a chef? 

“When I was young I wanted to become a surveyor. Then I tried to be a cook. I study to “Alberghiero” and then I discovered that I liked it.”


–          Economically speaking is the cook a profitable work? 

“Yes, I can’t complain about it. At the beginning I earned less than now but it’s a job in which you can grow up and advance your career and also increase your salary. The more your level is high, the more your salary is high ”


–          Can you still grow up in this job? 

“Probably not.. cooking for wedding is quite restrictive: you can’t experiment with new and very particular dishes because you have to be sure about the result.”


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Double wedding cake for William & Kate

Royal family’s wedding ,on 29 April, can be considered the media event of the year. Everybody in Britain and not only is waiting for this. William & Kate’s love story has ever been chatted on for its resemblance to Lady Diana’s story. In the last months a lot of indiscretions about their wedding appeared on magazines, websites, TGs and so on. The main reason of this interest is not only the popularity of the couple, but also the symbolic value of the union between the English prince and the lady.

After Lady Diana’s death, everybody is waiting for a good conclusion. Her story gained  a lot of importance for British people, that soon got on with the princess for her similarity to a common woman. She was humble and pretty, not like her rival Camilla. Following the “fairy tale” started by Diana, Kate is in the collective imagination worthy of to be the next princess.  This is a very weighty inheritance for the young Kate.    


There are many common elements between the royal wedding heppened in 1981 and this: in particular we can mention the engagement ring that William gived to Kate and the horse coach which was used for Carlo & Diana’s wedding. Kate preferred a common car to move to Buckingham Palace like all the other brides, but, like tradition wants , she will get carried away in the “State Landau” which in the 1981 carried William’s parents.

This isn’t the only disagreement element between the young brides. Recently media told about the wedding cake’s choice.  William and Kate don’t agree about the best cake for their ceremony: this is the reason why they decided to serve two different wedding cakes! The one chosen by Kate will be a fruit cake on more levels, decorated with the royal coat of arms of the couple on the top and with eatable flowers traditionally assigned to Britain’s nations: England, Scotland, Galles and Northern Ireland.


The other one, chosen by William, is a typical English recipe loved by the prince but it should be a “secret”. However everybody knows that we are talking about brownie. The cake-designer of the fruit cake will be Fiona Cairns.  She revealed that the cake will not be colored, but classical and mellow. Every level will have a different theme.  She will follow the creative ideas of Kate. The chocolate one, on the other hand, will be made by Mcvitie’s.

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FOCUS ON: menu

Bridal feast needs an articulate organization, which includes the menu, a list of the courses. The advice on menu’s choice is to follow the traditional sequence:

–          the “antipasto”;

–          two first courses;

–          the main course (meat or fish) with the side dish;

–          a fruit or mint sorbet;

–          another meat’s dish with vegetables on the side;

–          a mellow cheese’s tasting on the cutting board;

–          an ice-cream, a fruit bowl or a mousse;

–          the wedding cake;

–          biscuits and pralines to be served with coffees.

Bridal feast is very long, for this reason it’s necessary to introduce some “breaks” during the courses to allow the guests to stretch one’s legs and to socialize. During this pauses can be added dances, games, karaoke or a  slide show. The total duration of the feast have to be not more than two hours.

The most important prerogative for the menu is to be in keeping with the season and the style of the ceremony, for example preferring white meat during hot season and red meat and fowl during cold season. If there are a lot of children it’s a good idea to arrange a special menu for them.  

Commit yourself to a good sommelier for wines’ choice not to place side by side excellent foods and weak wines. A little suggestion :

–          Champagne or “prosecco” with the “antipasto”;   

–          Light white wine with the first courses;

–          Dry white wine with fish;

–          Young red wine with white meat;

–          Full-bodied red wine with red meat and fowl;

–          Sweet sparkling wine or Muscat for desserts.

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