Hayden is behind The Cake Man Bakery. Australian and having spent time in England, Hayden learned how to bake from his mother and grandmother. He started baking cakes for Barcelona’s cafes 5 years ago. Without his own kitchen, he bounced around other people’s from Cloudstreet to Honey Bee. And after one and a half year of chasing permits and builders, he opened his very own shop. On a charming street with 1 story houses in Poble Nou.
The Cake Man Bakery is everything he ever wanted. A large bright kitchen with equipment that works. A walk-in fridge, piled high with 1 kg rolls of butter. There is a larder at the back staked with large bags of speciality organic flour. Ingredients are important to Hayden. “Only eggs from happy chickens,” he tells me, adopting the local way of referring to free-range birds.
There’s a recognizable style to his cakes. Never will you see a tiered cake wrapped in buttercream. “We played around with the idea.” he recounts. “It just wasn’t on brand.” No, his style is rustic but pretty. It’s a one layer cake with icing or frosting sitting on top. Flowers often make an appearance. He has a deft hand at incorporating nuts or coconut and fruit.
The result is that you can always spot a Cake Man cake in a lineup. At some point, he is explaining how he strives for excellence in all his baking endeavours. He leans in close to me and says “I don’t know if you will think I am being funny, but the other day I told my staff I want us to be the Beyonce of cakes.”
It comes back to me when I walk into a new cafe and see a squat, one layer cake with a crown of dried roses. The Cake Man was here…