Editor's Note: This article is part of a new online series launched in July 2023 by the City of Gainesville intended to highlight and promote must-try businesses in the area of the historic square in downtown Gainesville, Georgia. As the community continues to flourish and welcome new restaurants, retailers and service providers – especially within the downtown corridor – leadership wishes to introduce available offerings to residents and visitors alike ahead of their next trip to the City of Gainesville. Must-Try Monday features will be released weekly via gainesville.org and the @GainesvilleGeorgiaGovernment (City of Gainesville, Georgia) Facebook page. Be sure to "Like" and follow us on social media so you don't miss the latest and greatest about the Hospitality Capital of the World!
Acuna's Cake Shoppe | 343 Northside Drive | Open 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Tuesday-Friday + 9 a.m.-1 p.m. Saturday
GAINESVILLE, Ga. (Sept. 11, 2023) – Acuna’s Cake Shoppe, also known as Acuna’s Custom Cakes, is a boutique-style bakery specializing in custom cakes for weddings, quinceañeras, birthdays – all of life's special events.
"We also have cupcakes and other treats available for purchase daily for walk-in customers," states Diane Acuna, who owns the shop with her husband, Joel Acuna.
On any day of the week (that they're open, of course), you can savor up to 16 sinfully sweet cupcake flavors, including the September Cupcake of the Month – maple-bacon; petite pineapple upside-down cakes – an absolute must-try if you haven't sunk your teeth into one yet; dazzlingly decorated cookie cakes and cookie sandwiches; decadent mini cheesecakes; plus festive cake pops, seasonal hot chocolate bombs and more.
Learn the ins and outs of Acuna’s Cake Shoppe, what makes it a Must-Try Monday-worthy business and why you should make it a destination the next time you're near downtown Gainesville by reviewing the exclusive Q+A with Diane Acuna below.
Q: When did your business open and where? If your business has operated at other locations, please list those.
A: We opened the doors to Acuna’s Cake Shoppe on July 27, 2022, at 343 Northside Drive, Gainesville, Ga. 30501. Prior to opening our retail bakery space, we operated from our private kitchen under Georgia Cottage Food Law. We had been in business since 2016. ...
Q: How long have you been operating in downtown Gainesville?
A: We are conveniently located about a half-mile off the [historic Gainesville] square and have been at this location for just over a year now.
Q: What drew you to operate your business in downtown Gainesville?
A: As a born-and-raised Gainesville native, I couldn’t imagine opening my business anywhere else. We live less than 2 miles from where our shop is located, so that makes for an amazing commute to work.
Q: What kinds of products and/or services does your business offer to the public?
A: Every week, we offer a wide variety of gourmet cupcake flavors ... usually up to 16 different flavor combinations a week! In addition to our cupcakes, we offer mini cheesecakes, cake pops and other seasonal treats, as well as custom-designed cakes for weddings, quinceañeras and other occasions.
Q: Can you give some examples of unique products and/or services you offer that aren’t easily replicated elsewhere in town?
A: What sets our cake shop apart from other retail/supermarket bakeries is the level of expertise and customer service we provide. We aren’t the type of bakery that hands you a book and says, “Here, pick out your cake design.” When booking a wedding cake with Acuna’s Cake Shoppe, we take the time to sit down with each of our brides for a one-on-one consultation and tasting where they have the opportunity to taste six different cake flavors and filling combinations, and design their wedding cake to their exact specifications.
Q: What offerings are you most proud of and why? Give us the scoop!
A: We are definitely proud of our work in the wedding industry and the hundreds of weddings we have been a part of since 2016. Now that we have our storefront location, we are proud of our everyday offerings. We are proud to have a bakery where you can walk in off the street and grab a gourmet cupcake or a sweet treat for no special reason at all!
Q: Do you target a specific audience? If so, can you please specify?
A: In years past, our target audience was mainly engaged couples. While that market is still a huge focus for us, I do feel our target market has grown.
Q: If you aim to target everyone, can you please explain how and through what products and/or services?
A: Our target market has definitely expanded with the opening of our storefront location. We want to target the everyday customer, not just engaged couples. Every month there is something to celebrate, whether that’s a major holiday, birthday, anniversary or just a family gathering. The fact that you can walk into our shop and pick out a beautiful box of cupcakes makes those celebrations even sweeter.
Q: What is your favorite “must try” item you offer and why? Feel free to name more than one!
A: [Our] cupcake of the month! Each month, we feature one new cupcake flavor that is only around for that month. Once it’s gone, it’s gone. Another must try would simply be our vanilla with vanilla buttercream. It’s a classic. Everyone raves about our buttercream frosting.
Q: In your own words, what makes your business a positive addition to the downtown cityscape?
A: While there may be a few family owned bakeries on the outskirts of Gainesville that are all amazing establishments, there aren’t really any in the heart of Gainesville that do what we do, and just the atmosphere when you walk into our bakery is unlike any other around.
Q: Anything else you’d like to add?
A: Our wedding cakes have been featured in numerous online and print publications such as Southern Bride, Atlanta Style Weddings and The Celebration Society Weddings Southeast.
PHOTO CUTLINE | Acuna's Cake Shoppe's August Cupcake of the Month was a tantalizing PB&J cupcake: white cake filled with strawberry jam, topped with peanut butter buttercream and a Nutter Butter sandwich cookie! Acuna's is located at 343 Northside Drive, just a half-mile from the historic square in downtown Gainesville. Find additional photos shared via the @GainesvilleGeorgiaGovernment Facebook page. (Images shared from Acuna's Cake Shoppe's official Facebook page.)