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Cake walk

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Spunky is an apt description for Matty Cakes, the bakery that Matt Lewis opened in August on Piedmont Road.

How'd you get into this business?

As a teenager, my mom was going through a divorce and I started helping with the house, my sister and cooking. I had a hard time figuring out what to do. One day, Mom and I had an argument and she said, "Why don't you just go to culinary school?" I graduated from the [Culinary Institute of America] in Hyde Park [N.Y.] in 1993.

Where'd you work as a pastry chef?

At Bacchanalia, Alon's, the Four Seasons, Eatzi's.

How did Matty Cakes manifest?

Out of my quest to find the best of everything -- the best chocolate chip cookie recipes, the best chocolate cake. I wanted to put together a lot of really good things. Our cakes don't have to look fancy to be delicious.

The malted milk brownies are deliciously retro.

I worked and worked on those. I probably made them 20 times.

What are your other big sellers?

The red velvet, banana caramel, old-fashioned chocolate and coconut cream cakes. I want people to have fun. Sweets aren't healthy, but there's nothing wrong with food coloring. I was trained as a purist, but we are all tired of following the rules.

Who are your regulars?

This is the perfect place for a neighborhood bakery. Lots of mothers and children and young urban business professionals seem to be our clients right now.

I love the decor -- all the lime green and orange and purple.

Most bakeries are Tuscan or French with sponge-painted yellow walls. I wanted to break that mold. Everybody loves sweets and I wanted this to be a happy place. We are trying to have fun and make really good stuff. It's a lot of work to satisfy a sweet tooth. But at the end of the day, I am not emotionally tired. It's a different tired -- satisfied tired.

Matty Cakes, 1830 Piedmont Ave. 404-917-CAKE. www.mattycakes.com.

chefstable@creativeloafing.com

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