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April 19, 2014

Bake-Off! 'Ace of Cakes' vs. 'Cake Boss'

by Marina Zogbi, posted Nov 19th 2009 9:00AM
Duff Goldman, Ace of Cakes, and Buddy Valastro, Cake BossIn this corner: Champ Duff Goldman, star of the Food Network's custom cake show 'Ace of Cakes.' Every week at Charm City Cakes in Baltimore, Md., Duff and his team of hipster bakers build confections that defy both imagination and gravity for events such as weddings, movie premieres and the Super Bowl.

And in this corner: Contender Buddy Valastro, star of TLC's 'Cake Boss.' Each week at Carlo's Bake Shop in Hoboken, NJ, Buddy and his crew (most of whom are family members) create equally elaborate cakes for customers ranging from Sweet Sixteens to the American Museum of Natural History.

Surely there's room on TV for two wildly creative cake artists? Yet fiercely partisan fans of each show have been taking sides and letting their preference be known. (Just Google "Ace of Cakes vs. Cake Boss."
Duff Goldman, Ace of Cakes, and Buddy Valastro, Cake BossIn this corner: Champ Duff Goldman, star of the Food Network's custom cake show 'Ace of Cakes.' Every week at Charm City Cakes in Baltimore, Md., Duff and his team of hipster bakers build confections that defy both imagination and gravity for events such as weddings, movie premieres and the Super Bowl.

And in this corner: Contender Buddy Valastro, star of TLC's 'Cake Boss.' Each week at Carlo's Bake Shop in Hoboken, NJ, Buddy and his crew (most of whom are family members) create equally elaborate cakes for customers ranging from Sweet Sixteens to the American Museum of Natural History.

Surely there's room on TV for two wildly creative cake artists? Yet fiercely partisan fans of each show have been taking sides and letting their preference be known. (Just Google "Ace of Cakes vs. Cake Boss."

Let's look at the stats:

'ACE OF CAKES'
Duff: 30-something owner of Charm City Cakes (not open to the public), from a family of cooks and artists; studied at the Culinary Institute of America, among other schools; worked as executive pastry chef at the Vail Cascade Hotel and Resort, among other places. Single, plays bass with indie rock band, generally laid-back; likes to shape cakes using a blowtorch and power tools.

The staff: Mainly Duff's friends, all of whom are young and fairly chill, like himself.

The show: Premiered in August 2006; its seventh season wrapped last month (episodes are still being aired). Charm City seems like a really fun place to work with its cool staff and general hipster vibe. There's a lot of dry humor and not so much drama. The focus is on the cakes.

The cakes:
There's nothing Duff and crew won't do. Hard to pick highlights over seven seasons, but the Viking Wedding Cake and Demolished House Cake were pretty awesome.



'CAKE BOSS'
Buddy: 30-something proprietor of Carlo's Bake Shop (a position he inherited from his late father), married, father of three; hot-tempered yet lovable, given to bellowing at his staff when things go awry. Generally averse to using inedible cake parts, but will resort to a cardboard tube or stick of plywood to prop up an edible airplane or toy soldier.

The staff: Mainly Buddy's extended Italian-American family, including several sisters, their husbands, and assorted cousins; several unrelated cake decorators.

The show: Premiered in April 2009; currently in its second season. More than one pundit has likened it to 'Ace of Cakes' meets 'The Real Housewives of New Jersey', and that's not a bad description. There's a lot of yellin', pranks are pulled and feelings are hurt, but it's all good humored, even affectionate, just a little ... loud. High amusement factor.

The cakes: Perhaps not quite as refined as Duff's, but pretty amazing. Buddy specializes in realistic-looking flowers and his cake for the Brooklyn Botanic Garden featured edible blooms that looked astonishingly life-like.

In this classic bit of 'Cake Boss' drama, a Fashionista Cake is ruined mid-delivery, but everything works out in the end.

So who's the ace of cake bosses? Duff and his humorous staff of laid-back pros or volatile Buddy and his wacky famiglia?


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108 Comments

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Danielle Burreson

This may come off as mean, and I am sorry if it does, but Ace of Cakes is more professional. There is nowhere near as much drama or immature jokes. It is all about the 'cakes' which is the most important element of both shows.

Sunday at 3:11 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
oippopp

I watch both, but I prefer Ace of Cakes. Cake Boss makes appealing cakes, but Duff and his staff are real artists. I just like the fact that the free hand draw nearly everything and the construction of their cakes are not butchered or messy.
If we're talking about entertaining wise, I think Buddy's show is funny, but I'm so tired of seeing this Jersey wave over the television screen.

November 28 2011 at 9:58 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Lakesha

Ace of Cakes they are world renowned, and more creative, and not cheesy. I want to chill with them

August 26 2011 at 2:39 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Pauline

Cake boss is more realistic it is more open and lets u see wat goes on inside the bakery , their wedding cakes r amazing and luk delish + its more interesting 2 watch CB than ace of cakes i watched 1 episode nd got bored too chilled not enough drama relisism!

April 10 2011 at 2:40 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Bee

cake boss!!!! buddy valastro and his team at carlos bakery make cakes that are a billion times better!!! theyre bigger, more artistic and way more realistic and imaginative!!! CAKE BOSS one billion percent, cake boss...

March 04 2011 at 10:49 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Nicole

ACE OF CAKES ALL THE WAAAAAAY !!! cake boss is so bad ;; Buddy is mean,obnoxious and untalented. His cakes are not that bad but still.. 0 creativity.

January 05 2011 at 8:59 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to Nicole's comment
rachelwestcott

Nicole you have got some problems buddy does have creativity he has cakes cupcake cookies pastries and soon bread do you think ace of cakes is a little boring i do buddy has a quick temper so what and he is not obnoxious cakeboss rules.

July 28 2011 at 8:50 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Mai

I really like Ace of Cake but than I started watching Cake Boss, I love it! In reality, that's how it is if you work with close friends and families. Buddy is an awesome guy! He may appeared mean in most episodes, but if you watched his first season from start to finish and read his book, it really show that he's a caring and loving guy. Ace of Cake is too boring, not enough zing to it.

December 27 2010 at 4:45 PM Report abuse -1 rate up rate down Reply
Tiffany

I like both shows, but I think I would be disappointed if I ordered a cake, spent a nice chunk of money on it, and got alot of styrofoam or rice krispie treats instead of cake. I've noticed in alot of episodes that they could totally use cake to get the same result, but they've opted for styrofoam or rice krispie treats. Sorta like taking the easy way out I suppose. But, I guess as long as their customers like what they pay for, then all is well.

August 10 2010 at 8:52 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Nikki

So i was reading most of the comments. Personally I'm in favor of Ace of Cakes. There is a lot of conflict in on cake boss. There were also comments about how they don't like how Duff uses "hard wear". What i personally think is that his designs are very complex and they need a lot of structural support. As for the Styrofoam, I'm pretty sure their using it for display fake cakes. I think of the guys at Charm City as artists and Carlos has pastry chefs.

July 12 2010 at 11:51 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Mina

talking skills when it comes to decorating somethin that is meant to look realistic, duff crew, hands down. when it comes to traditional cakes, like wedding cakes, then ill give it to buddy.

you dont get to see charm city cakes making traditional looking cakes much, rarely ever do they do it. ppl go to them for big project cakes, with very detailed work, thats what they specialize in. but then have done a few and they're great.

buddys crew, when they try to do somethin realistic, it always looks cartoon-ish, i dont know why. but their flowers and pipping work is flawsless.

when it comes to the show itself, theyre both funny in completely different ways. youve got a crazy italian family and you want to strangle the sisters and then theres a young group of ppl that just relax, hang out while makin cakes.

buddys a tough, cocky "dont mess around" kind of chef, while duff is more laid back, no confrontations required, kind of chef.

now, in cake boss, theyre not just makin cakes, theyre running a bakery, although they dont focus so much on that part of the story but its there, and youve gotta remember that so you understand why it can get so hectic. while at charm city, they just make cakes, no other worries but that, no wonder theyre no chill.

June 27 2010 at 3:53 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to Mina's comment
rachelwestcott

I agree with you on ace of cakes you do not see that mutch creativity as cakeboss buddy is that kind of laid back tough and cocky kind of guy.

July 28 2011 at 8:55 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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