Chef’s Table: Pastry – Opinion

Chef’s Table: Pastry is now streaming on Netflix.

In its first three seasons, Chef’s Table has profiled the culinary wisdom of 22 acclaimed chefs from across the globe. Each documentary-style episode’s subjects head some of the best restaurants around the world. Creator David Gelb has thrown open the kitchen door to give us a glimpse of what inspires and motivates these talented people, and to illuminate their personal and professional journeys. The series is not only insightful, it is absolutely stunning and captivating to the eye. Now, Netflix has released a spinoff of the main show, focusing on pastry chefs – a surprisingly completely different field.

Unlike most culinary shows today which are competition based (rendering the food secondary to the drama of the battle), Chef’s Table focuses on the process of creation. It’s not surprising the series has won an International Documentary Association Award and has been nominated for three Primetime Emmy Awards.

I sampled an episode profiling Christina Tosi, owner of NYC’s Milk Bar and judge on Masterchef and Masterchef Junior. The episode allows her to narrate her journey from childhood home cooking to her move to New York trying to break into the industry. She describes her classical training at CIA followed by years of working in fine dining establishments as a pastry chef up to her developing her own signature style and the opening of Milk Bar and its subsequent success. Tosi – always photogenic – comes across as down to earth and accessible, not carried away by her celebrity status.

These new episodes are pretty sweet, and will have you reaching for the desert menu!