Dallas baker wins Food Network challenge

To a pastry chef, the term “piece o’ cake” probably pisses you off. (Don’t even get ‘em started on “easy as pie.”) Cake is hard! Especially when you’re trying to impress the judges on a national network, commemorating the re-release of the most popular animated film of all time.

But Dallas’ Bronwen Weber of Frosted Art Bakery and Studio made it look, well, like a piece o’ cake Sunday night, when she won the Food Network’s Lion King-themed bake-off.

Weber’s dynamic interpretation of the villainous Scar in mid-leap bested all the other competitors, with the show airing the second weekend when the new 3D Lion King claimed the No. 1 spot at the weekend box office.

This is nothing new for the gay-friendly Weber, who last year designed “pride cake” cupcakes with rainbows and HRC symbols. She has won 14 medals from the Food Network, including eight first-place citations — three more than her nearest competitor. The episode airs again tonight at 7 p.m.

You can find Weber’s treats at FrostedArt.com.

—  Arnold Wayne Jones

Tony Giles wins at Europa

Tony Giles
Tony Giles

If you’re gonna compete in a bodybuilding contest, here’s a good pieces of advice: Talk to me first.

Earlier this year, I profiled porn star Mark Dalton prior to his competing in the Ronnie Coleman Classic, a well-known muscle show here in the Metroplex, and Dalton won first place in the novice heavyweights category and best overall novice.

Then a few weeks ago, I profiled Tony Giles, who models as Tony DaVinci, as he prepared for the Europa Supershow event, which took place last weekend in Dallas. And how did he do? Best novice middleweight, best novice overall and best open middleweight — the most medals of anyone there. Not bad for first-timer. (Dalton also competed at Europa, in the light-heavyweight category, but failed to place.)

Great results for Giles, though it was, he admits, different that what he expected would happen.

Giles had planned to compete as a light-heavyweight (Dalton’s class), but the day of the weigh-in — following a water fast and taking diuretics — he had dropped too many pounds to qualify.

“On Thursday I weighted 182 and by weigh-in on Friday I was 176,” he says. That was too low for light-heavyweight and the lightest he could be and still qualify as a middleweight. It may have been a blessing, though. “It was actually a good thing because those guys were huge.”

Tony Giles
Tony Giles

Even Giles admits the loss of fat — and water — made him look gaunt if not actually unrecognizable, so the first thing he did was eat: A cheeseburger, french fries and carrot cake, followed that evening with pizza. No food ever tasted so good. The proof? In less than a week, Giles has bulked up again by 29 lbs., clocking in at 205.

Despite all the torment, he plans to compete again. He’s on vacation this week and will skip the next season, but plans to be back for the Junior USA contest after that. He’ll need to change the regimen for that one, though: He needs to gain 15 pounds of muscle.

Piece of cake. Carrot cake. And only when he’s done.

— Arnold Wayne Jones


This article appeared in the Dallas Voice print edition August 20, 2010.

—  Michael Stephens