Josie Meltesen, Lead Cake Designer · Market Street Diner, Carl's Cakes
Not just anyone gets hired to replace a legend. Josie Meltesen started decorating cakes more than 20 years ago, and was hired as Carl's assistant to train under him and eventually become his replacement. The Longmont, Colorado, native moved to Long Beach, California when she was 8 years old. At the age of 17 she moved to Tomah, Wisconsin, to live with her sister, and has been here ever since. Josie started decorating ice cream cakes at a Dairy Queen in Tomah in 1995. The following year she started working in a bakery just across the street, where she met her first cake-decorating mentor. Since then she has worked in several other bakeries, learning a great deal more about pastries and desserts at each stop along the way. Finally, "I started my own cake business at home in 2008," says Josie. "It was quite successful to the point that I was turning down business due to the high volume of requests! The last cake order I did at home was just before I took the position at Carl's Cakes." "I love food, but more than that I love being a part of food culture," says Josie. "Food brings people together in all manner of settings, and I really enjoy being able to serve others through creating a centerpiece for them to share together." In her spare time, Josie listens to podcasts like RadioLab, Invisibilia, and many others. "I enjoy spending time with my family hiking, exploring the outdoors, visiting museums, going to the movies, and going out to eat."