Pastry chefs continue to rise in prominence here as at least three celebrated dessert makers open standalone confectioneries.
The first is Janice Wong of 2am:dessertbar. She is also a two-time winner of Asia’s Best Pastry Chef title in Asia’s 50 Best Restaurants line-up, in 2013 and 2014. A pop-up store that she introduced last November at Gardens by The Bay has now moved to the first floor of Ion Orchard. The next location has yet to be revealed.
The space carries over 70 types of sweets, including edible art expressed on lollipops and truffles that resemble the swirling neon paintings of American painter Jackson Pollock.
“I think many Singaporeans generally enjoy desserts and are willing to spend on well-made ones,” says Wong. “Consumers are becoming more discerning and adventurous as a result of an increase in international travel and exposure.”
Besides Wong, Japanese chef Kenjiro Hashida of Hashida Sushi – it was awarded Best New Restaurant (Asian) – and pastry chef Cheryl Koh of Les Amis, who earned the title Chef to Watch, will open confectioneries in Mandarin Gallery and Shaw House respectively in April. Both awards were presented by The Peak Selections: Gourmet & Travel last year.
Details of Koh’s store, including its name, are still under wraps but the 33-year-old Singaporean has a penchant for traditional fruit desserts like strawberry tarts. Hashida’s store, meanwhile, will be named Hashida Garo. While the 35-year-old is best known as a second-generation sushi chef, he was trained in Western culinary arts and is renowned for serving Japanese-inspired macaron flavours like yuzu and sakura at the end of meals. Details are still being finalised but these items will be sold alongside a selection of wagashi – traditional Japanese confections.