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National Library Week Celebration 2018: Literary Cake Contest


First Place: 

Admission to the SoFlo Cake & Candy Expo


Class with a leading industry professional at the SoFlo Cake & Candy Expo

Second Place: 

Admission to the SoFlo Cake & Candy Expo

Third Place: 

A cookbook carefully selected by Chef Kochi


AUI Fine Foods

Our thanks to AUI for supplying the fondant for this year's Literary Cake Contest!

Our thanks to SoFlo Cake & Candy Expo for donating prizes for this year's Literary Cake Contest!

Contest Rules

Contest Guidelines

  1. Entries must be a physical cake. Interior should be styrofoam, decorations should be made using fondant, gumpaste, marzipan, royal icing or any other decorative medium which will display the interpretation of the book.
  2. In addition to a decorated entry, students must provide 1/4 sheet cake cut into bite sized pieces on the contest day. The cake should have a filling and flavors should correspond with book theme. Use of fondant and decor on the sheet cake is optional. 
  3. The contest is open to any JWU student.
  4. Teams may be one or two students.
  5. At least one student must be present during judges' tasting so that they can explain their flavor selection.

Key Dates:

  1. Entries may be submitted Thursday, March 8, 1pm through 10 pm.
  2. Place styrofoam order with Chef Kochi on Monday, March 12.
  3. Place food requisition order with Chef Kochi on Monday, March 19.
  4. Cakes must be set up in the Library by 9:30 pm, Monday, April 9, to be entered in the contest.
  5. From 8 am - 9 am on Tuesday, April 10, students can make any last minute adjustments to their cakes. After that time, any adjustments made will result in loss of points. 

Judging Criteria:

  • Overall appearance (Cleanliness of finished work and wow factor)
  • Portrayal of the book's title
  • Flavor
  • Lab Cleanup

Literary cakes can:

  • Look like a book in form and shape
  • Be inspired by a book or author
  • Be a pun of a book title
  • Refer to a book character or genre
  • Reproduce a book cover

Most importantly, your cake should have something to do with a book!

Judges' Biographies

Shayla Barnes-Holloway is a self-proclaimed cake snob obsessed with all things sweet, beautiful and delicious.  In 2010, Shayla left her demanding career as the Executive Director of SES Operations for The Princeton Review to become super mom to her four little ones.  Her very first mission was planning a fabulous birthday party for her sons, Josef and Rhys.  In her quest to find the perfect birthday cake, she stumbled upon the world of cake artistry and the rest is history.  She is now the owner and lead cake artist of The Buttercreamery Sweets Boutique, a custom cake and confection studio located in Sunrise, FL. 

Shayla is passionate about creating cakes and desserts that are as pleasing to the palette as they are to the eyes, baking cakes from scratch using the recipes and techniques passed down from her grandmother and aunt.  Since 2011, she has grown The Buttercreamery from a home-based cupcake business into a fully licensed dessert studio specializing in lavish wedding cakes, gravity defying three dimensional sculptured cakes and extravagant desserts and pastries. Her cakes and dessert buffets are a favorite among celebrities and Miami socialites.  In addition to having her cakes featured in various publications and blogs, including Essence, The Knot and Southern Bride, she has also appeared on Cake Hunters on The Cooking Channel. 

When she is not elbow deep in buttercream, Shayla enjoys outings with her husband, four children and adorable granddaughter, Sage. You can check out her creations at or throughout social media as TheButtercreamery.


Brielle Fratellone has been in the pastry industry for over a decade and is known for adding a modern influence to luxury desserts.

While working as a cake decorator in a Kansas supermarket, Brielle became fascinated with the culinary arts. There, she created cake displays and constructed intricate wedding and special occasion cakes, which prepared her to best utilize her award of a 2007 James Beard scholarship to attend the Culinary Institute of America in Hyde Park, NY.

Since graduation, Brielle has worked as a pastry chef in distinguished Florida hotels and resorts, including The Breakers in Palm Beach, The Ritz-Carlton, Omni Amelia Island Plantation Resort, and Everglades Club. One of her original desserts is published in the Culinary Institute of America’s cookbook, Gluten Free Baking, and her life-size edible wedding dress, made entirely of pastry elements, served as a centerpiece for The Ritz-Carlton’s reopening of its grand ballroom.

Currently, Brielle is Assistant Executive Pastry Chef at Fontainebleau Miami Beach, where she manages over 45 team members in the pastry department and upholds the highest standards in all dining establishments at the hotel—including Chez Bon Bon, the coffee and patisserie shop where guests can enjoy a variety of made-from-scratch confections. She also has a major role in the creative process and execution in one of the Food Network and Cooking Channel South Beach Wine & Food Festival’s signature events, Wine Spectator’s Best of the Best, hosted annually at the hotel.


Amber Love Bond is a freelance food and travel writer who stumbled upon her creative side while being unsatisfied with a job in corporate finance. As a Miami native, she fell more in love with her city every day and needed an outlet to share her passion. In 2016 she wrote an article about Miami's best desserts for a local blog, MIAbites. The article resulted in a weekly column called Saturday Sweets and sparked something and in less than a year she quit the corporate world to pursue writing full time. Now part owner of MIAbites, she also contributes to Eater MiamiHuffPostTime Out, and Mashed among others. She's a self-taught baker and owner of Cakes by Amber Love. Her knowledge and love for baking and writing has also landed her the Head of Communications position for one of the largest baking trade shows in the country, SoFlo Cake and Candy Expo. When she's not in her kitchen baking or a coffee shop writing, you can find her at the opening of every restaurant, usually with a dessert or two in hand, or hanging out on the beach with her laptop in tow.


Danny Malone is from Southwestern Pennsylvania near Pittsburgh. His grandmother influenced his decision to lean towards the ‘sweet’ life. He was accepted into a three-year pastry school, Konditor Fackskolan, in Uppsala, Sweden. It was there he found his calling and began excelling in his new profession. Upon his return to the US, Danny operated his own pastry shop in the Pittsburgh area. Feeling the call to develop his talents further, he moved to South Florida and assumed a position as Executive Pastry Chef at the Fontainbleau Hilton, where he garnered praise and accolades.

Danny later became the Executive Pastry Chef at the famed Turnberry Isle Resort and Club. When Turnberry Isle Resort and Club were undergoing a major renovation, he became an instructor at Le Cordon Bleu Miami, helping to develop some of the best new talent the industry receives annually.

Upon returning to The Turnberry Isle Miami, Chef Malone has continued to perfect his craft and skills while wowing guests with his incredible talent.


Ismare Monreal has been with Johnson & Wales University for eighteen years. In her current role as dean of students at the North Miami Campus she oversees all aspects of student academic and financial services, the center for academic support and the many areas of student life including community standards and conduct, parent relations, residential life, student involvement and leadership, international student affairs, athletics, new student orientation, student counseling and health services. She is responsible for implementing and supporting annual student services’ departmental strategies. In her tenure with Johnson & Wales University, the department of Athletics has grown from two competitive varsity sports to eleven this upcoming Fall, the number of resident students has more than doubled and various initiatives to support first generation college students and other high risk student groups have been implemented to ensure the success of all students that enroll at JWU. Ismare is a member of the campus leadership team and an integral member of various university-wide strategic committees.

Before joining JWU, Ismare Monreal served as chief of staff to the Honorable Manuel Prieguez in the Florida House of Representatives and chief legislative aide to the Honorable Luis Rojas in the Florida House of Representatives. She is a member of the Women’s Leadership Circle, United Way of Miami Dade, the City of North Miami Downtown Advisory Committee and the National Association of Student Personnel Administrators.

Timeline of Events

Wednesday, March 7 

Information Session with Chef Angnardo and Chef Kochi

(1:00 pm in Pastry Lab)

Thursday, March 8

Sign up for contest

(Via the library's website beginning at 1:00 pm)

Monday, April 9 

Cake submission deadline

(Due in the library by 9:30 pm)

Tuesday, April 10

   10:30 am - Tasting cakes due in the


   11:00 am - Judging of cakes

   12:00 pm - Public viewing begins

   1:00 pm- Awards Ceremony

Lab Hours

Need a place to work on your masterpiece?

Lab hours and location for Segment 2:

7 am to 7:30 pm in HK4

Lab hours and location for Segment 3:

7 am to 7:30 pm in HK9

Contact Chef Kochi or Chef Angnardo for more information: