Claire Clark has had a career encompassing time spent at some of the most prestigious restaurants, hotels and event caterers in England. Her career spans from the grandeur of The Ritz, Claridges and Intercontinental and Westbury hotels to the more diverse Sir Terence Conran’s Bluebird, and from setting up a Pastry kitchen at the House of Commons to becoming Senior Pastry Lecturer at Le Cordon Bleu Culinary Institute. Claire’s event-catering background was grounded with Mossman’s Party Service, one of the most prestigious event caterers in the UK. Claire also has extensive background knowledge of banqueting; having worked at the then-largest conference and banqueting hotel in Europe, the London Hilton Metropole Hotel. Claire’s career has been all-encompassing: she gained many medals for the British Olympic Culinary Team and was one of the youngest examiners for City & Guilds Advanced Pastry. Claire’s knowledge and dedication to her work gained her a place in 2005 at the legendary The French Laundry in California under the watchful eye of Thomas Keller, the first American restaurant to obtain three Michelin Stars. In recognition of her commitment to her craft, Claire was awarded an MBE in the Queen’s Birthday honours list of July 2011.
The Art of Pastry:
Claire started out with the intention of following a career in music, but turned her creative talent to the art of Pastry. She feels that she was extremely fortunate to complete her apprenticeship with two Swiss German/Austrian Patissiers, the legendary Prof. John Huber, now deceased, and Ernst Bachmann.
Time spent working with chefs demonstrating such expertise inspired Claire and helped her to begin her celebrated career as a Pastry Chef. Training the up-and-coming Pastry Chefs of today remains of paramount importance to Claire.
Best Pastry Chef:
Her outstanding ability has been recognised with accolades such as becoming the first person in the UK and only female recipient of the “Meilleur Ouvrier de la Grande-Bretange” (MOGB) or the “Best Crafts Worker of Britain”. This is the highest recognition of professional excellence. In addition to this, in both 1999 and again in 2005, Claire was awarded the title of “Best Pastry Chef” by the well-regarded industry publication, Restaurant Magazine.