Two years ago, I traveled to New Orleans with my mom and my sister, and stayed at the Sheraton New Orleans. Don’t even get me started on how much I love New Orleans. We’d be here forever! That’s not what this post is about anyway. We accompanied Mom on a work trip, so one night we joined her and her board of directors for dinner. The meal was good, the conversation and company were delightful, but the dessert – oh the dessert is what I remember most. It was this light, creamy, orangy, tangy cake that was unlike anything I’d ever had before. I asked the server what it was, and she told me it was called Orange Ricotta Cake.
The next year, Matt and I went back to the Sheraton New Orleans with Mom (and 2 of her sisters) to assist on another work trip. During one of the conference dinners, we were presented with the Orange Ricotta Cake again. I may have literally squealed with delight in the presence of a few hundred planned giving professionals.
In the time since both of these visits, I have sporadically searched the internet looking for a recipe for Orange Ricotta Cake, with not much luck at all. Some were close – some were very far. None were just right.
On December 6th I was at work dreaming about this cake, and sent out this tweet:
Not much later that day, I received this (unexpected) reply:
WHAT??? First, I hadn’t expected a reply. Second – WHAT? I was elated! A few days later, I received this message on Twitter:
Lo and behold, this total stranger hunted down my most desired recipe, and sent it to me! MERRY CHRISTMAS!There are a few things to be learned from this entire encounter.
1. Twitter (and Facebook, and other forms of social media) MATTERS! It works! It can make a difference – big or small. It’s not always just some silly time suck. (Although, often it is.)
2. Customer Service MATTERS! This is huge – HUGE PEOPLE! Let me tell you that the Sheraton New Orleans is a BEAUTIFUL hotel. The location is fantastic, the rooms are very nice, and honestly, there is a smell in the lobby that I swear is pumped in (although the two employees I asked about it denied any knowledge of said pumping). It’s a fantastic place to stay. Before this Orange Ricotta Cake encounter, I would have tried to stay there again. After the ORC incident? I will DEFINITELY make the Sheraton New Orleans my hotel every time I visit New Orleans.
Perhaps it seems silly to some that I am professing my love to a hotel simply because they gave me a recipe, but it’s so much more than that. First, this is not the only act of awesome customer service I have received from this hotel. When we were there in 2010, there were two women who helped with our conference that went above and beyond each and every day we were there to make our stay more comfortable and easy. During this conference, I was having a lot of physical issues due to a miscarriage, and these women did so much to help! So much more than they needed to. Second, this silly little Tweet was sent out with no expectation for a response. Whoever it is behind the Sheraton NOLA Twitter account certainly has better things to do during his day than to Tweet back and forth with me about some cake! He not only tweeted me back, but he took time out of his day to hunt this recipe down! Let’s not even talk about the chef who took time out of his/her day to write the recipe down for me! It’s great customer service all around. And yes, in the light of eternity, cake doesn’t matter at all, BUT this has sealed the deal on my love for the Sheraton New Orleans.
I don’t know the guy behind @ShertonNOLA
, but I am so thankful for him. His boss should be proud of him too!! I baked that cake, and it was a HUGE hit at a dinner party we had with friends.
P.S. I know many of you will ask me for that recipe. Typically I am NOT the type of person that doesn’t share these things. I’m always happy to share the food love! In this case, however, I’m not going to share unless I get the okay from the Sheraton. I just don’t feel comfortable sharing a recipe that isn’t mine in such a public way. I hope y’all understand!
UPDATED: Y’all, I just heard from @SheratonNOLA that I can publicize the recipe! YAY!!! I have included it below. (Just a note: I served mine with a raspberry sauce instead of supremed oranges, but that was just a preference at the time. Always feel free to make a recipe your own!)