Jessica Préalpato has just been named the World’s Best Pastry Chef by the World’s 50 Best Restaurants rankings, following on from Cédric Grolet who won the award in 2018. The 33-year-old daughter of two pastry chefs from southwest France is the first woman ever to receive the honor.
Pastry chef at the three-Michelin-star Alain Ducasse restaurant at the Hôtel Plaza Athénée since 2015, Jessica Préalpato draws on the concept of naturalness - which consists of bringing out an ingredient’s full flavor - to showcase her creations. To do this, she has moved away from traditional forms of pastry; instead, she favors desserts that are less sweet, playing with ideas of bitterness and acidity, with sugar used only at the end to lightly season her dishes.
In her recipe book entitled ‘Desseralité’, which was published by Alain Ducasse at the end of 2018, the young prodigy invites the reader to discover her world through 45 unique and surprising creations, based around fruit and nature. A number of the recipes use strawberries, cherries and peanuts from the Pyrenees, which are all presented along with other plants in a range of different ways.
The young pastry chef has acquired solid experience with renowned chefs including Philippe Labbé, Philippe Etchebest, the Ibarboure Brothers and Frédéric Vardon.