Cakes worth celebrating, tasty treats & tantalising teas, too…
Since the summer of 2014 Madeleine’s Cake Boutique has been an elegant presence on our High Street, with window displays of cakes that often stop shoppers in their tracks and that must surely be pure torture to hungry passing motorists!
For its owner, Lisa Martini, Madeleine’s is the realisation of a dream.
“I inherited a love of baking from my family. My mother baked, my father made confectionary and my grandfather was a baker and cake decorator, so it’s fair to say that it’s in my blood,” says Lisa, “In fact, my scone recipe is my great-great-aunt’s and is over 150 years old!”
For many years baking was a just hobby but after 28 years as an operating theatre sister in her native Australia and with her sons grown up, Lisa left her job and moved to London to pursue her passion.
Lisa enrolled at Le Cordon Bleu culinary school and obtained a Diplôme de Pâtisserie, mastering in French Patisserie, and was – impressively – awarded the highest mark ever given at the London school.
This she followed by gaining experience in some leading London establishments, working with world-class cake designers, gaining a Masters in Sugar Craft and sharing her passion through teaching others. It’s fair to say that Lisa has drive and enthusiasm a-plenty!
Fortunately for us, Lisa’s vision of one day owning her own cake boutique led her to East Sheen and to what has quickly become a thriving business.
“I really wanted Madeleine’s to have high street presence,” says Lisa, “a place that is relaxing and welcoming and where we can showcase and share our favourite recipes, cater for celebrations and corporate occasions and share our love of teaching, too.”
Madeleine’s – named after the “plump little cakes called ‘petites madeleines,’ which look as though they had been moulded in the fluted scallop of a pilgrim’s shell” according to Marcel Proust in ‘Remembrance of Things Past’ – is always a hive of activity both front and back of house.
The tearoom you see from the street is a delightful place to stop for a cup of tea and a freshly baked slice of cake, a macaron, meringue, scone, cup cake or, indeed, a namesake madeleine.
Whilst classic teas and coffees are very much on the menu, you might like to try something new, such as Chocolate Tea, Jasmin Pearls, English Summer Garden, Jade tips or Mi Lan Dan Cong – all from small independent growers.
Then there’s the kitchen – modern, shiny, professional and visible from the front of the shop – where creations are realised and classes taught.
You will sometimes notice Lisa and her team at work late into the night if there’s a big order to go out for a special private event or a corporate occasion.
“The hours can be long but it’s not onerous when you’re passionate about what you do,” adds Lisa. “We love a challenge – whether it is several hundred cup cakes with company logos or matching the decoration of a wedding cake to the lace of the bride’s dress.”
“There’s nothing like seeing a customer’s face when they first see their bespoke cake! It’s also fun on the occasions that we have seen our creations on TV or in magazines!”
As a preferred supplier to a number of catering companies, it doesn’t look as though life is going to be quiet at Madeleine’s anytime soon but, despite that, Lisa is always on hand to offer free consultations (although it’s wise to book), chat to customers and pass on baking tips.
If you have a special occasion coming up, why not pop in and enquire? Prices for whole cakes start at £35.00 and Lisa is happy to advise on budgets for novelty, corporate and special occasion cakes.
If you feel inspired by Lisa’s story and fancy entering Madeleine’s kitchen and joining the professionals to acquire some new skills or add to those you already have why not check out their fun, sociable and inspiring classes – from basic baking to macaron making and intricate cake decorating, you’ll find details here
Madeleine’s Cake Boutique, 397 Upper Richmond Road W, East Sheen SW14 7NX.
www.madeleinescakes.com – firstname.lastname@example.org – 020 8878 6194
‘Madeleine’s gives our corporate events a personal touch by supplying the most delicious selection of muffins, cookies and the prettiest cakes you’ve ever seen or tasted. All of our clients are asking if we can bring Madeleine’s goodies with us when we visit them! We depend totally on Madeleine’s providing high quality goods for our most precious clients and we are continually amazed at the outstanding service they provide. We’re hooked, we can’t recommend them highly enough.”
“Lisa – you did it again! You do the BEST cakes ever and I am really spoilt and picky! There is always the greatest attention to detail, total professionalism and that personal little touch of care and thoughtfulness! Amazing! My darling kids added the perfectly kitschy elements of Love – Lisa did the rest of this culinary trip! Thank you!”