GUMNUT Patisserie takes the cake when it comes to making award-winning baked treats.
The patisserie, located in Mittagong, Berrima and Bowral, recently racked up its highest award tally for excellence since opening it opened its doors 16 years ago.
The Gumnut team has walked away from this year's Sydney Royal Easter Show with 42 awards as well as the prize for 2011 champion gourmet pie of the show and champion apprentice cake.
The prize tally included five gold medals for products such as mud cake with specialty garnish, mud cake glazed and tri layer mousse.
A new product on the Gumnut menu, a lamb and rosemary pie with sweet potato mash on top, was the big winner on the day with a gold medal and champion gourmet pie award.
Patisserie owners Vicki and Tracy Nickl are thrilled with the result, which continues the success of the bakery at the show in recent years.
They are especially proud of the achievements of their four apprentice pastry cooks who secured medals for every entry they contributed to the competition.
Leading the way in the young talent stakes were third year apprentice Kylie Masters who secured a silver medal and the award for champion apprentice cake for her Swiss roll as well as silver for her Danish Pastries and bronze for her assorted tartlets and croissants.
Fourth year apprentice Jason Hanger walked away with a gold medal for his Danish Pastry, a silver for his Swiss roll and bronze for assorted tartlets and croissants while apprentices Emelia Preston won silver for her fruit tart and croissant, and bronze for her Danish, and Zayne Vidler took out a silver medal for his fruit tartlet and a bronze for his croissant, Danish pastry and beef pie.
Mr Nickl said the apprentice results were a great achievement.
"They don't give out medals if they're not good enough and if nothing meets the criteria for a gold medal then a gold will simply not be given out to any entry in that section," he said.
"In some cases a bronze medal was the highest honour awarded.
"It's a great system because it truly rewards quality."
Mr Nickl said that while the recent accolades were valued, the Gumnut team was constantly striving for quality, variety and success.
Mrs Nickl added that there was a strong focus on training young people.
The couple has trained or is in the process of training 14 apprentices since the business opened as well as currently employing 40 staff at the various Highlands outlets for the Gumnut Patisserie.
"This is what motivates us and it's pleasing to see them succeed," Mrs Nickl said.