American Cake Decorating Announce Challenge Winner


American Cake Decorating Magazine
Grace McNamara, Publisher
St. Paul, MN
June 13, 2019


After much anticipation, the winner and two finalists of American Cake Decorating magazine’s “Out of the Box Cake Challenge” have been announced along with amazing prize packages from sponsors.

Jesuit Nugas wins first prize with his breathtaking ‘Romantic Elegance’ cake, evocative of Wedgewood Jasperware.

Out of ten superbly talented finalists, Jesuit Nugas wins first prize with his breathtaking ‘Romantic Elegance’ cake, evocative of Wedgewood Jasperware. He is joined by runners up Natalia Issatchenko with her stylish ‘Art Deco Winter’ design and Leah Horcher with her beautiful ‘Boho Chic’cake. Jesuit Nugas wins first prize with his breathtaking ‘Romantic Elegance’ cake, evocative of Wedge-wood Jasperware.

Jesuit wins the much coveted “front cover” of American Cake Decorating magazine, North America’s bestselling cakemagazine as well as $1000 cash prize and over $1000 worth of incredible cake products in one of the most exciting competitions in American Cake Decorating magazine’s 25-year history. All ten finalists feature with tutorials in the July/Aug issue for readers to enjoy recreating with easy to follow step-by-steps.

“Out of the Box Cake Challenge” winner Jesuit loves making cakes! His specialty is sugar flowers and royal icing which he showcases perfectly in his winning wedding cake design. Jesuit has been mentored by Heny Sison, Alan Dunn, Ron Ben-Israel, Maggie Austin, Dawn Parrot, and Kristina Rado and has won Best of Show awards at the New York Cake Show in 2015 and at the Oklahoma State Sugar Art Show in 2018. Although based in New York, Jesuit and his brothers own Sweet Project, a baking and cake-decorating studio, in the Philippines. Main sponsor guest judge Nicola Hem-ming of Renshaw Americas was won-over by Jesuits beautiful celebration of “Wedgewood Jasper-ware colours, clever construction, stunning royal icing details and ‘soft’ pink roses”.

2nd place has been awarded to Natalia Issatchenko for her striking ‘Art Deco Winter’ cake. Natalia is the proud owner of Cake Crown in Ontario Canada. Cake decorating Natalia’s hobby until her eldest son announced his wedding. She knew she wanted to make his day special and decided to make the best fondant cake she could. When Natalia decided to make his wedding cake it literally changed her life! She fell in-love with classic cake decorating techniques and sugar flowers and her hobby quickly blossomed into a full-time business and love of all-things cake! Natalie wins $500 cash prize from American Cake decorating magazine and a brilliant prize package from sponsors.

3rd place was awarded to Leah Horcher with her incredible ‘Boho Chic’ design. Judges were impressed with Leah’s approach to color and impeccable finish with her ‘aztec’ details really wowing the voters. Leah is owner and head cake designer at INK Sweets in Minneapolis. Known for her love of the nontraditional, Leah loves to use sugar flowers to find a balance between quirky and beautiful. Leah wins $250 cash prize from American Cake Decorating magazine and an amazing product prize package from the sponsors.

Renshaw Americas, Roxy & Rich, Katy Sue Designs, Icing Images, ATECO, and Opulent Treasures sponsored the “Out of the Box Cake Challenge”, launched in March 2019. Ten successful cake finalists were given a “dream wedding client design brief” and a mystery box containing products from each sponsor. Each featured a unique description of the couple the finalists needed to design for, along with a chosen color scheme, theme, and season. Each artist had to think outside of the box and create a one-of-a-kind wedding cake using every product in the box.


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