April 16, 2014
It is no secret that Austin’s restaurant scene has blown up exponentially over the past several years. Its pastry chefs, in particular, are thinking outside the plate to produce innovative, playful desserts that are just as pleasing to the eye as they are to the palate. Incorporating more savory elements than ever, and using techniques ranging from classic to molecular, the 10 nominees for CultureMap’s 2014 Tastemaker Award for Best Pastry Chef are bringing some pretty sweet competition to the table.
Soon after her first kitchen job at Cipolina in Austin, led to a job at esteemed Jeffrey’s, Callie Speer dropped her physics major to pursue the culinary arts. She went on to become the pastry chef at Mars followed by Parkside. Married fellow pastry magician Philip Speer, she now thinks up the playful desserts at Swift’s Attic. Years in the industry: 13.5
What dessert made you want to be a pastry chef? No particular dessert —I just really loved the art of desserts, or pastry cheffing, if you will.
Guilty pleasure sweet treat? Thin Mints. Favorite dessert from childhood? Funfetti icing — I would just eat the icing by the spoonful!
Current favorite creation of your own: Banana pudding with stout beer bubbles, peanut brittle, sherbet and crispy chocolate mousse.