Duff Goldman, renowned for his innovative creations at his Charm City
Cakes in Baltimore, MD, is one of the most sought-after cake makers in
the country. For the past ten seasons, he’s also been bringing his
unique style of baking to a national television audience as the host of
the hit Food Network show, Ace of Cakes. Recently cancelled, Goldman is moving on to another show for the network called Sugar High.
Chef Goldman has been cooking since the age of four, when his mom
caught him in the kitchen watching Chef Tell and swinging around a meat
cleaver. His great-grandmother was a baker in the Ukraine, so a passion
for cakes is definitely in his blood.
He started his professional foodservice career when he was 14, and
has been working in kitchens and bakeshops ever since. In high school,
he made sandwiches at a pizza parlor in Cape Cod. He then started
working for acclaimed chef Cindy Wolf at Savannah restaurant while
attending the University of Maryland, Baltimore County.
After graduating, Chef Goldman left Baltimore to earn his Baking and
Pastry Arts Certificate from The Culinary Institute of America at
Greystone in California’s Napa Valley. While in Napa, he was a stagiere
at The French Laundry, working under celebrated pastry chef Stephen
Durfee. Chef Goldman left California to become executive pastry chef at
the Vail Cascade Hotel and Resort in the mountains of Vail, CO, where he
worked with such notable chefs as Jesse Llapitan, now executive chef of
the Houstonian in Houston, TX; and Jason Rogers, currently at the
Borgata in Atlantic City, NJ. He then went to bake bread for Todd
English ’82 at Olives in Washington, DC, working under Executive Chef
Steve Mannino ’95. Chef Goldman came full circle in 2000 when he
returned to Baltimore to open his own business.
Known for its out-of-the-ordinary creations inspired by just about
anything, Charm City Cakes offers special-occasion cakes made to order,
each taking anywhere from 10 to 200 hours to complete. Chef Goldman
often uses drills, power saws, belt sanders, and blowtorches in making
his cakes. Before long, the recognition—as well as the cake
orders—started pouring in. Baltimore City Paper included him on its Best
of Baltimore list in both 2002 and 2003, and he was named one of
Baltimore’s Up and Comers in 2005. His celebrity customers have ranged
from Hillary Clinton to Alice Cooper.
Duff Goldman '98 works with CIA Baking and Pastry Student
"Ace of Cakes," quickly became one of
the Food Network’s top five shows after its August 2006 debut,
according to the network’s Senior Vice President for Programming Bob
Tuschman. And after just two months on the air, Duff Goldman was the
star of the most-watched prime-time show on the Food Network.
Caption: Duff Goldman ’98, owner of Charm City Cakes, visits Chef Cavotti’s cake
decorating class and talks to students about their designs