The Picasso of Pastry: Pierre Hermé

Famous in France, Japan and the United States, the man that Vogue called “the Picasso of Pastry” revolutionized pastry-making with regard to taste and modernity. With “pleasure as his only guide”, Pierre Hermé has invented a totally original world of tastes, sensations and pleasures.

Towards the end of 1996, Pierre Hermé left Fauchon to start Pierre Hermé Paris® with Charles Znaty. Their first shop opened in Tokyo in 1998, followed by a Salon de Thé in July 2000. In 2001, Pierre Hermé returned to the gourmet scene in Paris. Immediately, the pastry shop at 72 rue Bonaparte in the Saint Germain des Prés area scored a big success. Every day, enthusiastic gourmets rediscovered pastries, macarons and chocolates, with connoisseurs from all over the world flocking to this temple of sweet delights.

In 2004, a second shop featuring very innovative interior design opened at 185 rue de Vaugirard. In early 2005, the latest concepts from Pierre Hermé Paris® were launched in Tokyo: a “luxury convenience store” and a Chocolate Bar. Both are located in the Omotesando district, where the biggest fashion brands and companies operating in Japan have stores.

In 2011, Pierre Hermé Paris® has eight sales outlets in Tokyo, one in Osaka, nine in Paris, one in Strasbourg, two in London and an online boutique

Heir to four generations of Alsatian bakery and pastry-making tradition, Pierre Hermé began his career at the age of 14 as an apprentice to Gaston Lenôtre.

With his original approach to the profession of pastry chef, he revolutionizes even the most firmly entrenched traditions. For example, he prefers discreet pastry decors and “uses sugar like salt, in other words, as a seasoning to heighten other nuances of flavor.” Refusing to rest on his laurels, he is always revising his own work, exploring new taste territories and revisiting his own recipes.

As a result, praise has often been lavished on Pierre Hermé, who has been called “pastry provocateur” (Food & Wine), “an avant-garde pastry chef and a magician with tastes” (Paris-Match), “The Kitchen Emperor” (New York Times) and “The King of Modern Pâtisserie” (The Guardian), along with honors and decorations, as well as – most importantly – the admiring gratitude of connoisseurs of gourmet sweets.

“La gourmandise: an infinite source of pleasure.”

Read page 2 to see what his partner Charles Znaty has to say about him.