Since winter is the perfect season for chocolate beverages, we are focusing on two chefs who have a special talent for all things chocolate. Chef Donald Wressel and Chef Josh Johnson of Guittard Chocolate have shared some chocolate beverage recipes that provide a unique spin on something traditional to showcase their expertise. Check out their distinctive takes on hot cocoa on our Instagram feed, @makeminefine.
Chef Donald Wressel found passion for cooking at a very young age, and grew his life around it. He began his journey at Washington State in the Chef Culinary Program, and worked in multiple locations on both the east and west coast before settling down with Four Seasons Restaurants for almost twenty years. In 1986, he began working for the Four Seasons in Philadelphia, quickly making his way up to executive pastry chef at the Four Seasons Beverly Hills location. He remembers these times as his noteworthy learning years.
Chef Wressel’s commitment to excellence led him to participating in worldwide pastry competitions resulting in multiple awards and medals for his talent. Donald joined Guittard Chocolate in 2006 as their corporate pastry chef, and to this day continues to create new and stunning recipes that are incomparable. He continues to master his craft while teaching others as well with his “Guest Chef Series” classes at the Guittard Chocolate Studio in Los Angeles.
Another chef we’d like to highlight is Chef Josh Johnson. Chef Johnson’s love for chocolate began as a teenager working at his uncle’s pastry shop. He moved on to working at the Ritz-Carlton in Chicago, where he gained more experience alongside world-renowned pastry chefs. Josh ventured into many different pastry positions before opening Cocoa Bean Fine Desserts, his own shop in Geneva, Illinois. He soon became a teacher as a pastry chef instructor at The French Pastry School of Chicago. He was thrilled to be given the opportunity to teach others his craft, the way he was taught by so many chefs throughout his life as well. He now works as a pastry chef for the Guittard Chocolate Company, where he combines all of his knowledge and skill to bring new ideas and creations to the table.
We invite you to learn more about chefs and chocolatiers like these on our website, finechocolateindustry.org. The Fine Chocolate Industry Association (FCIA) is the only organization focused 100% on supporting fine chocolate professionals. We promote the artistry and craftsmanship of the chocolate professional, focused on producing superior products made from premium chocolate and natural ingredients. We believe in using best practices in cacao processing and chocolate production; as well as transparent labeling and marketing practices.