Nov 252009

My friend Patti Jackson is the Executive Chef at i Trulli. Last weekend was the birthday of Nicola Marzovilla, the restaurant’s owner. Nicola’s wife Astrid planned a large surprise party, and Patti made a cake. Patti worked and trained as a pastry chef for a long time, and a few months ago she made a wine bottle cake for our friend Peter.

Patti constructed the cake in the i Trulli kitchen with the help of her friend Christine Lau. The top of the cake has not been finished; you can also see the inspiration for the design: Nicola’s new wine from Italy called Massoferrato
Making the cake in the i Trulli kitchen

Patti rolled out a final piece of fondant.
Rolling out fondant

The i Trulli kitchen is in the basement of the restaurant. The cake was carefully carried upstairs and left of the bar while we waited for the van. One of the trickiest parts of the evening was making sure that Nicola didn’t come into the restaurant and see the cake. The managers had to reassure him many times that everything was going smoothly that night, and that there was no reason to come in.
Ready for transport

The cake was loaded into a van. Here you can see why Patti left the cake unfinished–she needed to be able to keep the cake steady as we drove from the restaurant to the party location. In the background is Christine.
Cake in the van

Patti finished the cake by applying the previously prepared fondant to the neck of the wine bottle cake.
Finishing the cake

I helped Patti carry the cake into the venue through the kitchen.
Posing with the cake

Not only was Nicola surprised by the party, but also the cake was totally unexpected.
Nicola Marzovilla and Patti Jackson

Dora Marzovilla, Nicola’s mother, prepares the fresh pastas at i Trulli.
Nicola Marzovilla, Dora Marzovilla, and Patti Jackson

Later in the evening, candles were added to the cake.
Nicola blows out the candles

After delivering the cake, Patti headed back to the restaurant to change. When she came back, she lent a hand in the kitchen giving directions on how to disassemble and cut the cake.
Cutting the cake
Cutting the cake

The serving of the cake went quickly; servers flew out of the kitchen with trays of cake.
Serving the cake

The cake was stacks of rounds held together using dowels. The construction was similar to the construction of a traditional wedding cake.
Closeup of cake construction

Yum. Cake
Slice of cake

 Posted by at 12:50 pm

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