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Elfie Weiss, Hotcakes Bakes

A version of this post originally appeared in and

Photo of Elfie Weiss

Born in Paris, France, to a family of cabaret artists, Elfie Weiss witnessed firsthand the beginning of the crazy and iconoclastic spirit of cabaret. Her father, Paco, aka Henri Astier was one of the founders along with Jean-Marie Riviere and Marc Doelnitz of the Alcazar. The famous cabaret in the heart of St. Germain des Pres where Elfie spent her youth was one of the central revolutionary and mythical places of Parisian nightlife.

Elfie started working in entertainment at the age of seven. She had a very substantial career as an actress and singer in Paris by the time she was eighteen. Elfie then moved to Los Angeles to continue her career. But she slowly realized that entertainment was not the only passion that she shared with her parents. Baking was always at center stage.

Elfie’s father used to work as a pastry chef when he was a young man in order to pay for his dancing lessons at the Paris Opera. Elfie’s father shared with her his love for preparing the essential bread and “sweets of life.” Elfie trained primarily with her father as well as in Paris’ renowned bakery Gerard Mulot and Laduree.

From dancing to baking

In 2005 after having baked privately for many clients, Elfie decided that it was time to revive her family roots. She opened a bakery with a little entertainment flair — Hotcakes Bakes!

Hotcakes Bakes, an upscale, woman-founded and owned small business, is a full-service bakery established in 2006. Baked goods include macaroons, cookies, cupcakes, and custom-made cakes. In 2020, the business completed renovations and expanded its offerings to include coffee/espresso, sandwiches, lunches, and gelato. They prepare all bakery items from scratch on-site, from French pastries & viennoiserie to award-winning cupcakes and cakes.

Hotcakes Bakes has appeared on various TV shows, including winning Cupcake Wars (Food Network), The Tori Spelling Show (Oxygen Network), Battle of the Wedding Planner (TLC Network). They received the best Wedding Cake award by In Style Magazine in 2009 and catered the Emmy Awards and the Grammy Awards.

Photo of the Hotcakes Bakes staff

Expanding and diversifying

In 2022, the business received its liquor license. Elfie sought working capital from the Small Business Development Corporation of Orange County to open a sister venture along with her son Dylan: Evil Twin. The new bar opened in 2023 and shares retail space with Hotcakes Bakes. Under Dylan’s reins, Evil Twin provides an international selection of high-quality, hand-picked wines. Guests can explore curated natural wines and craft beers paired with locally sourced, seasonal bites while enjoying biweekly comedy nights and more.