Russell Blackstock

Russell Blackstock is a senior reporter at the Herald on Sunday.

Nasty cake 'joke' leaves bad taste

The offending cake.
The offending cake.

A hothead Kiwi baker is defiant after sending a cake shaped like a large pile of poo to a customer.

Oh Cakes owner Emma McDonald, of Riverton in Southland, sent the disgusting-looking chocolate log on December 20 after she claimed the client became annoyed at her for rescheduling a meeting.

Her actions have been greeted with outrage, but yesterday McDonald was unrepentant.

"I have no regrets at all about what I did. I feel she got what she deserved," she told the Herald on Sunday. "I don't make cakes as a business. It is just a hobby and I'm taking it all with good humour."

But Invercargill mayor Tim Shadbolt said the incident was embarrassing to the city. "I think this must have been done with humour, but sometimes humour can go terribly wrong," he said.

The stoush started when McDonald said on Facebook that the client did not give her clear enough instructions about what she wanted. It is believed the cake was ordered for the engagement party of 24-year-old Micaela Harris of Invercargill by a relative.

McDonald said the customer had won a $50 voucher for a cake, which McDonald reduced to $30 because she said the client owed her $20 for a separate business arrangement.

Harris' family and friends were horrified on the day of the party when they discovered they had been sent a cake in the shape of poo. A card with the cake read: "Eat s**t".

After it was picked up, McDonald posted on Facebook: "Your (sic) left with a $30 voucher and you want a cake still?? ok cool - give me some ideas?? oh wait you have none apart from wanting chocolate. I have a brilliant idea for your cake!!! - so here it is, your turd cake! Hope you learn your lesson."

The offending cake sparked fury online. A text from the customer to McDonald and posted on Facebook said: "We r (sic) just at my sister's engagement and got your cake, we and every1 else is absolutely disgusted."

A source close to Harris revealed a second cake had to be ordered from another supplier.

"The cake was for an engagement party and this woman is not remorseful at all, which is disappointing," the family member said. "It was wrapped up in a box, so it was done deliberately as a nasty surprise. It was a disgraceful thing to do."

Invercargill Chamber of Commerce president Sean Woodward said the incident was not a good look for the southern city. He insisted the region was famed for its good food and warm hospitality.

"People expect any business to treat its clients with respect," he said. "The cakemaker should have stopped and taken a breath or even gone on a holiday before doing this. What on earth was she thinking?"

- Herald on Sunday

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