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Really need HELP with this complaint!!

post #1 of 212
Thread Starter 
I need open and honest opinions about this.

I just got a call from a bride that the bottom tier of the cake I delivered last night was, "burned, almost black." I was shocked. I would have noticed that! She said that no one said anything to her during the reception because they did want to ruin her day, but a cake server went up to her sister and said that the bottom layer was so burned that they couldn't even serve it. The bride said they couldn't serve the bottom tier and she has 1/2 left that she would bring back to me if need be.

She then proceeded to tell me that the hall manager (who recommended me to her) said to her, "Apparently we should be more careful about who we recommended." Obviously I'm floored and sick to my stomach.

So, I went and dug her cake scraps out of the trash. NOT burned. If fact they're still nice and moist. Then I called the hall manager. She said she had not heard anything about this. Had not even spoken to the bride yet, and did not make the above comment. I asked her to find the server who served the cake and to see if they did say they couldn't serve the cake, and to find out how many people actually attended her reception.

Here's a few facts about her cake. She said she needed 125 servings for her reception. But the cake design she wanted was too big, so she ordered the 200 servings needed to do the design. (This includes the groom's cake, which she said they didn't even cut into.) So she ordered 75 servings too many. She wants a refund for the bottom tier, which is coincidentally 80 servings.

Some questions I have are:

If the bottom layer was bad and they needed to feed the guests, why didn't they cut the groom's cake?

How does she intend to prove the cake is burned and almost black when she brings it back, or am I calling her bluff by telling her to bring it to me?

They served 1/2 the bottom layer even though it was burned?

She said she will bring the cake layer back Monday. I need to be ready to decide what to do by then.

What other questions should I be asking?

What have I missed?
post #2 of 212
I would say you need to see the cake today, not Monday. Offer to drive out to see it. Something is foul with the whole story, and I wouldn't give them 48 more hours.
post #3 of 212
I don't own a shop so my advice may be way off but I would check it and if it's burnt then refund 80 (# of servings for that layer) X whatever you charged per serving. I would also think about doing a discount for a future cake.

If it's not burnt then too bad for them. No refund!

I would also contact the venue and let them know if it was not burnt. Take pictures just in case.
"It never ends! It never ends that way too." ~Hammy
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"It never ends! It never ends that way too." ~Hammy
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post #4 of 212
I agree with kelleym - definitely sounds like a con game - you should ask her to meet you at the reception hall with the manager there.
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visit http://morselsbymark.weebly.com
check out my cake blog - morselsbymark.blogspot.com
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post #5 of 212
I'm not a professional cake decorator but in my opinion you should call her bluff and have her bring you back the "burned" tier. That has to be bogus because how would you not know you had burned some of the cake? I always know if I have overbaked or underbaked my cakes and I just started doing this so I'm sure with your experience there is no way you would not have known.

Sounds like she went over her wedding budget and is trying to get some money back into her pocket.

I think you should stand your ground and make her prove it.
post #6 of 212
Sounds like you have a real doozy there. I would tell her to bring the 'burned' cake back and call her bluff.

She's obviously lying about the hall manager, why wouldn't she lie about the cake.

I'll bet dollars to doughnuts...erm...cupcakes that she's just trying to get some money back.

Since the hall manager hasn't talked to her yet...wait. She will call him and complain about the food. Some people are just like that.

Personally, I would tell her "it wasn't burned when it left my possession, I do not deliver inferior product." Then tell her to bring you the cake and see what happens.
"Qu'ils mangent de la brioche." -- Marie Antoinette
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"Qu'ils mangent de la brioche." -- Marie Antoinette
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post #7 of 212
I would have her bring the cake to the hall today with the contact person there so that all parties are involved can conferm (or disprove) the cake is burnt. If it is there should be no problem if it isn't then b she will not show up. Chances are that you are not the only person she is trying to get money back from.
post #8 of 212
I agree, I would want the 'burned' cake immediately, not on Monday. She's probably scortching it with a blowtorch as we speak. icon_wink.gif
"Qu'ils mangent de la brioche." -- Marie Antoinette
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"Qu'ils mangent de la brioche." -- Marie Antoinette
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post #9 of 212
Did she get what she contracted for? I am assuming-yes.
If moisture is a complaint then you need to see the cake today right now before it dries out any further. I would call her bluff by saying that you called the venue and spoke to so-and-so to find out what might have happened to your cake and they don't recall anything of the kind. Remind her that you advised her of the servings and that she would have too much cake. Tell her how to freeze her cake leftovers so she can enjoy them next week or next month..LOL This is just too much!
¢¾Sarah
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¢¾Sarah
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post #10 of 212
I agree with the others and I definitely wouldn't want to give her til Monday. Who knows what she might do to try to prove it was burned. It does sound an awful lot like buyers remorse. I mean, how could you, the cake decorator not have known it was burnt but the serving staff did?! Just doesn't add up in my book! Good luck and let us know what transpires!
post #11 of 212
I agree with Kelly, you need to do whatever you need to do to see that cake right now. I think YOU should go to the venue and talk to the servers if possible, maybe even get their phone numbers and call them.

I don't know how much you charge, but refunding that bottom tier would run me close to $400 and I would want to be 100% it was a warranted refund.

If you are certain beyond certain that the cake was not burned and everything was fine, then you have someone just having buyers remorse. In which case, I would still just say, I've thoroughly looked into your claim, I've examined and sampled the cake, discussed it with the banquet staff and managers as well as the kitchen staff and this claim is unsubstantiated. I appreciate your feedback, however, you are not due a refund. You cake was delivered on time, decorated as ordered, and with the same delicious flavors noted in your contract. Best Wishes.
Alison
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Alison
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post #12 of 212
Keep your cake scraps in case she's got a torch!
Really fishy and if she's willing to make up that whole story, she'll find a way to burn that cake!
post #13 of 212
today or she's definitely SOL....by monday, she'd be able to burn a cake and cut it up to look like that's what was left....
"Be the change you want to see in the world."- Mahatma Gandhi

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"Be the change you want to see in the world."- Mahatma Gandhi

miniature cake tutorial

http://www.youtube.com/user/MyNewSneakers?feature=mhsn
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post #14 of 212
I'm not a professional cake decorator, but this is exactly the reason I'm afraid to do things for people other than friends or family. It definitely sounds like she is fishing for a refund or partial refund. You would have absolutely noticed if the cake was burnt before you decorated it. I would not meet her alone. I would ask the manager of the venue and the cake server to meet you with the bride and have her bring the cake. But, I wouldn't wait!! If the neither of the parties are available, I would get at least statements from the manager and the cake server before memories fade. My guess is once she finds out the manager and cake server would be at the meeting, she will suddenly be unavailable. Good luck and keep us posted!! Be firm!! Your work is always beautiful!! Schmulie65 icon_smile.gificon_smile.gif
post #15 of 212
Sounds like a scam......call her bluff....if you have the cake scraps, meet with her, the hall manager and anyone else who handled the cake after you delivered it....and lay it all out on the table. Do it today.....don't wait....

Let us know how it all comes out......
SMILE - and people will smile back.

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SMILE - and people will smile back.

www.myspace.com/mycakesite
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