On this special episode of Chef’s Story, host Dorothy Cann Hamilton speaks with Dominique Ansel, executive pastry chef of the Dominique Ansel Bakery, and the maker of the world famous Cronut. Speaking about his history working as an apprentice at the age of 16, he explains how he left school and left no room for failure. After finishing his compulsory military service, he moved to Paris to work in the kitchen of Pâtisserie Peltier. Just a year later, Ansel made the move to the legendary bakery Fauchon. He spent seven years there working for Master Pastry Chef Christophe Adam, learning the delicate balance in flavors, textures, and aesthetics necessary to produce the bakery’s unique pastries. He later became responsible for Fauchon’s international expansion, helping set up shops in far-flung locations such as Russia, Egypt, and Kuwait. Next, Dominique rose to fame in New York City, where he served as the Executive Pastry Chef at Daniel under celebrity chef Daniel Boulud. During his six year tenure at Daniel, the restaurant won its first 3-star Michelin rating, a 4-star New York Times review, and James Beard’s Outstanding Restaurant of the Year Award in 2010. In November 2011, he moved on and became the chef and owner of Dominique Ansel Bakery in New York City. Despite being a newcomer to the pastry scene, it has already been awarded “Best New Bakery of 2012” by Time Out New York and “Best Bakery of 2012” by Metromix. In 2013, Chef Ansel received his own James Beard Award nomination as a finalist for Outstanding Pastry Chef at his eponymous bakery. Also known as the maker of the Cronut, a half croissant, half doughnut, this pastry hybrid continues to take the world by storm. Learn how Dominique was able to start his own bakery, and find the inspiration behind the makings of his pastries such as the Cronut! This program has been sponsored by Fairway Market.


“It takes a lot of personal effort. Take the time to show what cooking is about by respecting the product.” [8:00]

“Opening a bakery for me was a dream – I always told myself that someday, I would do something special for myself.” [30:10]

“The Cronut was to challenge myself – I wanted to do a doughnut, but bring a French spirit to it.” [42:00]

Dominique Ansel on Chef’s Story