Cutting and Preserving the Cake

The first cut of the wedding cake is ceremonial. A knife tied with a ribbon is set next to the cake; the bride picks up the knife (it shouldn't be handed to her), and cuts a small piece from the bottom layer of the cake. This is the piece the bride and groom will feed each other. Usually, after the first ceremonial cut, the cake is taken from the reception area to the kitchen, where it is sliced, plated, and, in many instances, garnished with berries, edible flowers, or the like.

Once in the kitchen, if the cake is tiered, the top layer will be removed; it should be carefully wrapped so it can be frozen. (It's traditional for the couple to celebrate their first anniversary by eating the preserved top layer.) If the cake has buttercream frosting, remind the caterer to chill the top layer for at least one hour in the refrigerator so the icing can harden. Then have the cake wrapped in plastic wrap and placed in a cake box, which will also be wrapped in plastic. The remainder of the cake is then sliced and served.


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