Published on 1/29/24


Chef Emma Fitzpatrick


Chef Emma was born and raised on Long Island, New York, where she got her first job baking bread at a local French bakery. In 2019, she graduated from Johnson & Wales University in Providence, RI. After a semester abroad at Florence University of the Arts, she went on to work multiple James Beard Foundation events with the University. Upon graduation she went on to work as a pastry supervisor at Orlando World Center Marriott before moving down to Miami, FL to join the team at The Salty Donut as their Pastry Sous Chef. Chef Emma quickly moved up to the Executive Pastry Chef of their Wynwood Commissary kitchen. She did a brief stint with Ariete Hospitality and helped open their French Brasserie, Laurel, before moving up to Charleston to oversee the pastry programs for Tempest and Church and Union.




What is your earliest dessert memory?

The first birthday that I can remember I begged my parents to have a party at my local bakery. They let me go in there with some friends and we were able to decorate a bunch of cookies and cupcakes. It was so much fun and it really sparked my desire to work in bakery when I got older.

What inspired you to enter the world of pastry?

I have a really large family so growing up I’d always see my grandmas in the kitchen making a ton of food for everyone. We weren’t really big on desserts growing up outside of birthdays and holidays, but I was super interested in them and as I got older I wanted to work in a bakery. My dad helped me get my first job in a local bakery that specialized in French breads/ pastries and I was hooked from there. The technique and science behind the doughs were so fascinating to me.

Where do you find inspiration for your creations?

It kind of varies. Sometimes I start off with a flavor profile I want and other times I utilize social media and different recipe books. I take a ton of notes on different textures and aspects of what I like and build a plate from there. 

Who in your life has been the biggest mentor/inspiration in your career?

I’ve been really lucky to have worked with a lot of great pastry chefs, but Devin Braddock and Josh Cain have had significant impacts on my career and how I approach things in the kitchen. Josh helped me understand extremely large scale production and how to organize each day/week as efficiently as possible. Working with Devin helped shape how I approach flavor development and how I wanted to be as a female leader in a kitchen.

What are your hopes for the future of the world of food and pastry?

I hope that the pastry world keeps evolving and pushing boundaries. Social media has helped introduce the pastry world/food and beverage as a whole to so many and I’d love to see it help future chefs expand on what we’re creating now.

What should the role of the food/pastry industry be in the community? The world? The environment?

I think that the food/pastry industry should continue to help shape communities through the use of local purveyors when possible and to help expose people to new cultures. This industry is at a point where we can teach people about sustainable practices that can have impacts that reach beyond their local communities. 

What Social Responsibility / Community initiative are you the most proud of taking part in ?

Majority of the product we work with at Tempest and Church and Union comes from local farmers or fishermen. Connecting with them on regular basis to ensure that we’re using fresh local product and adjusting the menu as needed to keep it aligned with what they’re growing has been amazing to experience.

If you could pass one bit of insight down to a chef just getting their start, what would it be?

Try to learn from everyone around you and to try everything that you make. My chefs taught me a ton when I was really new in the industry, but I learned so much from the savory chefs that I worked with as well since they had a totally different perspective on kitchen life. Trying everything that you make will help develop your palate and it will help you later on when you start to develop your own recipes later on. 

What is your favorite perk of the Cercle V program?

I’m new to the Cercle V program, but I love that it’s creating another network for chefs to share recipes/ideas.

When & how did you hear about Valrhona for the first time? / When & how did your “relationship” with Valrhona start?

I was introduced to Valrhona in college, but when I was working in Orlando, FL with Josh we exclusively used Valrhona. Since then it’s been the only chocolate I’ve worked with because the quality is amazing and it helps elevate desserts to another level.





Celsius or Fahrenheit?


Favorite Valrhona Chocolate?


Favorite restaurant?

It changes a lot, but right now it’s either The Obstinate Daughter in Charleston, SC, Ariete in Miami, FL, or Bar Monette in Santa Monica, CA

Favorite flavor pairing with chocolate?

Tropical/acidic fruits, sea salt

Go to snack?


Coffee or Tea?


Favorite kitchen tool?

A mini offset or a really good whisk

Who do you follow on social media?

I follow a lot of chefs, but the ones I pull a lot of inspiration from are Camari Mick, Devin Braddock, Tatum Lynea Sinclair, Leigh Omilinsky, and Sophia Smith

Favorite type of dessert to make? To eat?

Ice cream for both