Photo source: Sugarbites Bakery
Jaman sekarang cake itu bentuknya lucu-lucu dan menggemaskan. Udah banyak lho cake yang tidak hanya mengandalkan lapisan gula warna-warni, tapi juga mengandalkan kreativitas sehingga bisa membuat banyak orang kagum saat melihat bentuknya. Namun, tidak sedikit juga bakery yang bisa membuat cake berbentuk unik, tapi saat dicicipi, rasanya biasa saja dan tidak ada yang spesial.
Photo source: @sugarbitesbakery
Nah, kalau kamu lagi nyari kue yang bentuknya unik, entah itu buat acara ulang tahun atau perayaan apapun, Sugarbites Bakery bisa jadi pilihanmu. Bentuk cakenya bisa di-custom sesuai keinginanmu, dan yang terpenting, rasa tetap nomor satu. Kalau nggak percaya, kamu bisa cicipin kreasi mereka di Hello Kitty cafe yang baru buka bulan lalu di PIK. Soalnya, mereka juga bikin cake untuk cafe tersebut lho. Followers nya Sugarbites pun di Instagram juga udah puluhan ribu, jadi bener-bener udah terbukti deh kualitas dan rasa cakenya Sugarbites.
Tapi tahu nggak, dibalik kerennya bentuk cake buatan Sugarbites, ternyata ada seorang wanita hebat yang sebenarnya tidak punya latar belakang pendidikan atau pelatihan pastry chef lho. Kok bisa? Daripada semakin penasaran, simak aja yuk interview ekslusif kita dengan Emma Reyna, owner dari Sugarbites.
1. Tell me about yourself and Sugarbites and how it came to be?
My name is Emma, and I’m the baker and cake decorator of Sugarbites, which is a bakery studio specialising in made-to-order buttercream cakes, founded in 2011.
Having a background in marketing & finance, right after graduating college in Melbourne and returning to Jakarta, I settled myself into banking- so I’m definitely not a professionally trained pastry chef- nor was baking even a steady hobby- but I just knew corporate life was not for me.
I am however a huge sweets-aholic and have always loved the rich, baked-from-scratch buttercream cakes and bakes of neighbourhood bakeries and old school mom & pop establishments, which are so hard to find and decreasing in number in Jakarta.
So on a whim, I decided to recreate those nostalgic flavors, researched a few recipes online and baked my first ever set of Banana Nutella cake and cupcakes from scratch for my grandma’s 80th birthday. (Which is strangely enough still Sugarbites’ bestselling flavor to date). It was well received by family and friends and by the end of 2011 I decided to exit banking and dive head first into the dessert world.
My baking concept was simple: I just wanted to make great tasting, fluffy layer cakes and cupcakes with buttercream. A cake you can eat from top to bottom without the fuss of fondant and over-the-top cake art.
I never thought I’d find my passion in creating creative & unique buttercream cakes for so many individuals and occasions all across Jakarta. I still remember after a year in, with consistent orders through word-of-mouth references, I thought to myself- “Hmm, I guess this cake stuff is what I’m meant to be doing!” Hence, the birth of Sugarbites.
Photo source: Sugarbites Bakery
2. What goes into the creative process of creating one of your cakes?
There isn’t really a rigid set or step of processes that goes into my cake creations. For me, inspiration can come from absolutely anywhere and can strike at anytime. In fact, many times, I bake according to the flavors and textures I feel like or am eating at the time. Just recently, a good friend of mine and I were just hanging out and snacking on our favorite childhood cereal and she just blurted, “You should totally do a cake of this!” So I did, even though it sounds unconventional as a flavor- but I do love creating bold flavor combinations.
For the cake designs, I love deriving inspiration from my travels, from florals, textile patterns, pastel color palettes, fellow cake artists, customers and even the Disney fairy tales & animations I grew up watching, like Fantasia- which I’m sure you can see in the many whimsical Unicorn rainbow cakes I’ve been baking lately.
But as much as I enjoy the creative aspect of the process I’ll never compromise on flavor. I make sure to use only the freshest, high quality ingredients available in all my bakes- no shortcuts, stabilizers or emulsifiers. Because where’s the magic in that? Cake must always taste as magical as it looks.
Photo source: @thesugarbitesbakery
3. What cake decorating trends do you foresee in 2016?
There has definitely been a major shift towards creating ‘statement cakes’ nowadays, where cake takes on center stage at any celebration or event. The classically chocolate covered cake with fruit on top just doesn't cut it anymore!
Last year was all about 3D floral buttercream and whimsical drip cakes, which I feel will stay in the caking world for a while because they both have timeless & fun elements, respectively. Stemming from the whimsical cake trend I think we’ll see a lot of watercolor and marble work, and pairings with gold and silver metallic accents. I also think we’ll see a lot more of mirror glazing & hand painted cakes this year. Cake is fun to eat, so it should be beautiful and interesting to look at, too.
4. What is your secret to success and what advice can you give aspiring bakers?
My advice for aspiring bakers would be- to just go for it, and if you’ve already started- keep on going! It may be cliché- but the secret is that there is no secret. Along my journey I’ve learnt that consistency, honesty, humility, and genuine love for your craft are essential and integral to build any successful business.
The dessert world is such a vast and constantly evolving industry- and that’s a beautiful thing because creativity is truly limitless. No one creation will be identical to the other. But it is also so important to know what your brand will encompass and to have a streamline focus on what you are offering.
When it comes to baking and cake decorating, there is never a time where you’ve peaked learning. So always refine your skills, and elevate your craft. Experiment with new ideas, try new recipes, ask for constructive feedback and be selective- work on projects & collaborations that are in line with your identity, and that you believe in and love.
Photo source: Sugarbites Bakery
5. What is your favorite food dish in Jakarta?
Omigosh, there’s too many to choose from! It’s really hard for me to choose between anything bakmi and all the local rice style dishes. But nothing can really beat a good dose of old school nasi goreng with the works: sunny side up, satay, fried chicken, pickles and lots of krupuk. You would think it was really easy to find a good tasty plate of nasi goreng in town, but I haven’t come across one lately! So I’m always on the prowl to look for the best nasi goreng- I’m pretty sure Nibble can help me out with that.
Sugarbites Social Media & Contact:
Wah, ternyata seru banget ya kisahnya Emma dalam membawa Sugarbites sampai bisa dikenal orang banyak. So, buat kamu yang penasaran sama rasa dan uniknya cake buatan Sugarbites, langsung aja kunjungin websitenya. Dan, yang paling penting, jangan lupa kasih reviewnya di Nibble. Klik di sini untuk informasi lengkap seputar Nibble.