A cake order for Gloria Estefan on Monday? Another for Dennis Rodman on Wednesday? Hundreds more for regular folks... Just another week in the life of Sarah Paz-Claro, owner and cake-maker at The Office Cake in Doral.
The place on 107th Avenue is a bakery purely dedicated to baking cakes.
At the age of 8, Paz-Claro started making sugar leaves for her mother's cake business. In August 2010 she started The Office Cake along with her husband and a few other employees.
"My mom is always telling me to be low-key because our clients can just hire anyone," Paz-Claro says. "We just want to be your corner store cakery that you can walk into and not feel intimidated."
Unlike her mother, who bakes cakes for the masses, Paz-Claro and
her assistant design and bake personalized pastry. Her emphasis is to keep them affordable.
Paz-Claro delivers too. The range is all of Miami-Dade County and southern Broward throughout Pembroke Pines, Miramar and Hollywood. They take custom orders too. In three hours, it can be delivered. If the destination is out of range, they'll find a carrier.
For instance, they delivered to the Bimini Bay Hotel in the Bahamas on a Cessna and to Philadelphia with the help of an airline delivery service called QuickPak used by Continental Airlines.
The cakes are generally eight inches in diameter and only serve approximately 12 to 15 people. One of their biggest sellers is the vanilla pound cake, a recipe from Paz-Claro's great-grandmother. Another is the killer chocolate cake that comes with a polished surface of chocolate icing, and more chocolate icing and chocolate chips in the center. The cake retails for $56.20.
They even have a gluten-free vanilla cake available.
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Before the cakery, Paz-Claro and her husband owned an own events planning business, Gables Linen, which they sold to a former employee. And just four years ago, Paz-Claro suffered a brain hemorrhage that brought her close to death. But she miraculously survived with virtually no impairment.
She left the events planning business to start a cakery with the hope of having a more stable work life. Unlike most bake shops that work on weekends and have Monday's off, TOC is a 9 to 5, Monday through Friday business.
"I'm sure a lot of people would like something more special than a grocery store cake," Paz-Claro says. "I can't speak for other people, but my senses tell me they are not giving their cakes a lot of importance. I got into this because I believe in celebrating the ordinary with something special."