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François Payard Bakery

A third generation French pastry chef and cookbook author, Francois Payard is known for his mastery of the pastry arts. Francois is the chef and owner of Francois Payard Bakery and FC Chocolate Bar, both located in New York City, as well as Payard Las Vegas at Caesars Palace. Branches of Payard have also opened in Japan and Korea.


François Payard Bakery



What region or ethnicity most influences your cooking?

When I travel I am always inspired by the foods I see. Flavor and texture are very important to me. I produce new collections of cakes and chocolates throughout the year, and I try to incorporate new ingredients from my travels.

What is your signature dish?

Chocolates are one of my signature items.

What kind of food were you exposed to as a child?

I grew up in a family of chefs. Every day I saw my dad cooking for us. As a child, I always dreamed of being as good as he was. My grandma also shared with me her love of food and gave me a passion for food.

Have you ever lived or trained overseas? Where?

I was born in Nice, France, to a family of pastry chefs. I am a third-generation pastry chef. After working in my grandfather's shop, Au Nid des Friandises on the Riviera, I moved to Paris and worked as a pastry chef at La Tour d'Argent and then at Lucas Carto.

Is there an exotic spice or ingredient that you particularly enjoy using?

I like using yuzu juice from Japan. It is a Japanese citrus that is starting to gain popularity in the U.S. I have been using it for years in chocolates and macarons. And green tea as well.

Does the design and style of your restaurant evoke a particular place? If so, where?

Francois Payard Bakery is inspired by rustic French bakeries.

When you cook for yourself, what do you make?

I like making pasta and salads. You can use simple and fresh ingredients to create dishes with amazing flavors. You can do so many things with them. You can create a new pasta dish just by incorporating different ingredients. There is always a new combination to try.

Tell us about some trips you've taken for inspiration.

I like Japan and Korea for inspiration. I have shops in both of those countries, so I have a good excuse to visit them yearly.

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