Antonia, I find your information so pertinent; thanks for sharing.
I just did my first "tasting" yesterday. It was presidents day, so I was off from school. I baked 6 different kinds of cakes late Sunday, and had them all filled and frosted by 11pm. Then eary Monday morning, we cut them into slices.
I then did a color coded system.
I took 6 different color plates, and put a very small but neat slice of cake with each different color plate(each plate had its own flavor). For example, yellow was banana nut. Orange was almond apricot. Pink was white raspberry. We wrapped them very neatly with plastic wrap. I then put them in a small cake box sort of artistically arranged (like a bouquet). It actually look really cool. I then found these cool matching napkins that had all of the color of the plates, and put them into the box along with a handful of plastic forks.
On top of the cake box, I printed out the colors with colored ink, and next to the color, I put a title and description of each piece of cake.
Then I scheduled people to come in all day for appointments to taste the cakes. I let them option whether or not they wanted to eat them in front of me, or take their cake boxes home to try privately. Most took them home, but some wanted to try them so they could book their cake right then and there.
I think the next time I do one, I will sign people up for the tasting, but I will do it so that they just come in, say hello, pick up the cake, and then call me back for a consultation. Staying at the shop all day was lengthy, and I found that there was some wasted time in that (especially waiting on people who did not show up....there were 2 brides that no-showed). I don't mind having extra samples, because I ended up having my husband deliver them to area wedding vendors along with business cards. However, 8 hours was a lot of time I could have been using to work on other stuff.
Out of the 25 people I met, I would say that only 1 person may not book. She balked at my prices.....she thought 3.00/slice for a tiramisu cake was too pricey. Her cake was going to cost her 900.00.
It was interesting, nonetheless. We'll see what happens!!! I've already got 22 wedding cakes booked for this summer, so I'm raring to go!!!