What is in this article?:
- Sylvain Marrari leads Chefs Club dessert program
- Inspired to keep it simple
The pastry chef works with a rotating list of up-and-coming talent at the Food & Wine venue.
Chef Marrari's chocolate moelleux with coffee and kumquat
When Food & Wine magazine offered Sylvain Marrari the executive pastryposition at its Chefs Club, the critically acclaimed chef jumped at the unique opportunity.
The program, designed by Food & Wine to showcase its Best New Chefs platform, inspired Marrari to leave his position as executive pastry chef of the five restaurants at the award-winning Setai resort in Miami for a chance to work with some of the culinary world’s most exciting up-and-coming talent.
Marrari recently spoke with Nation’s Restaurant News about his new position, working with a rotating lineup of chefs and the art of simplicity when it comes to desserts.
Tell me about Chefs Club by Food & Wine. How did you come to be involved with it?
Chefs Club by Food & Wine at The St. Regis Aspen Resort [in Aspen, Colo.,] is the flagship restaurant under the Chefs Club USA brand and brings the Food & Wine brand to life through their signature Best New Chefs awards platform honoring the country’s most promising up-and-coming chefs. Each year, Food & Wine selects from their coveted list of Best New Chefs to consult and curate new menu items in collaboration with the culinary team at the restaurant to create an epicurean experience beyond expectation.
I first met Chefs Club executive chef Didier Elena at the renowned two-Michelin-starred restaurant La Chevre d’Or in France. We then reconnected in Miami during my time at Setai, and Didier then offered me the position of executive pastry chef.
You’ve had a wildly successful career, particularly at The Setai. What made you decide that it was time for a change?
I always like a new challenge, and after about a year and a half at The Setai I was ready for a new challenge. Didier then introduced Chefs Club to me. The concept, goal, opportunity to continually meet influential chefs throughout the country and the potential to oversee the pastry program inspired me to take on the role and be part of the brand’s growth.
What can we expect from the dessert menu?
The dessert program has a mix of French and American influences, as well as featured dishes from Best New Chefs. I always like to cater my desserts to the location of the restaurant. For example, in Aspen I stayed close to traditional comfort desserts, such as riffs on an apple, cinnamon and cranberry crumble, and carrot cake, to name a few. In New York City, I will be taking on a completely different approach with desserts that will continuously surprise the guests and have an influence on city’s culinary scene.
Do you have any dishes in particular that you are most excited about?
I am particularly excited about the chocolate moelleux with coffee and kumquats that mirrors the “C” logo of Chefs Club in the chocolate sauce. Another is the exotic vacherin, topped with a snowflake to resemble winter and the snowflakes on the ceiling of the restaurant. My personal favorite is the extremely fresh-tasting caramelized brioche with fresh mango and hazelnut truffle sorbet.
The program features a rotating lineup of Best New Chefs. Will you change the dessert menu with each new chef?
The Best New Chefs simply enhance our menu. They add three dishes to the menu, and if one of them is a dessert it will be an additional dessert.