Pastry Chef and Chocolatier John Cook of Norman Love Confections has been named Pastry Chef of the Year by Paris Gourmet at the 28th Annual U.S. Pastry Competition. The competition took place on Sunday, March 5 at the International Restaurant & Foodservice Show of New York at the Jacob Javits Convention Center, where Cook competed against the top U.S. pastry chefs for Pastry Chef of the Year. Cook’s achievement marks the second consecutive year that a Norman Love Confections chef has won the coveted title of Pastry Chef of the Year.
The theme for the 2017 competition was Modern Masters Come to Chocolate, inspired by the artwork of artists Pablo Picasso, Vincent Van Gogh, Marc Chagall or Salvador Dali. Cook created a Dali-inspired confectionary sculpture, bearing a clock, an intricate frame, paintbrush, phonograph and record, and detailed flowers. In addition to the artist-inspired showpiece, Cook also presented artisan chocolates, individual desserts, a plated dessert and a cake.
Cook has been creating pastries, chocolates and desserts for Norman Love Confections since 2005, and in 2015, Cook took second place at the U.S. Pastry Competition.
The U.S. Pastry Competition is America’s most prestigious pastry competition. The event allows leading pastry chefs to showcase their talents by creating advanced
dessert and chocolate bonbon recipes exhibited along with highly technical sugar and chocolate sculpted showpieces. Board members of the Societe Culinaire Philanthropique, one of the oldest and most prestigious chef associations in the world, will preside over the judging procedures. Contest awards total over $10,000.00.
Founded in 2001 by Norman and Mary Love, Norman Love Confections creates and distributes handcrafted artisanal chocolates from its corporate headquarters at 11380 Lindbergh Blvd. in Fort Myers. The award-winning Fort Myers-based chocolatier has been lauded more than a dozen times by a leading consumer ratings magazine, including recognition six times for producing the best ultra-premium chocolates in the nation. Forbes.com included Norman Love Confections BLACK line on its list of the nation’s top 10 truffles; The Huffington Post listed it among the six best U.S. destinations in its Chocolate Lover’s Travel Guide; and USA Today named Love as one of its top 10 entrepreneurs for 2014. Love has recently been named as the inaugural inductee of Dessert Professional Magazine’s Chocolatier Hall of Fame, partnered with local chefs to present a six-course meal at the James Beard House in New York and Norman Love Confections was ranked among the top 10 shops in the world for chocolate lovers by U.K. media outlet Daily Telegraph.
Norman Love Confections has Chocolate Salons in Fort Myers, Estero and Naples, and Artisan Gelato by Norman Love is next door to the Fort Myers salon, off Daniels Parkway east of I-75. Chocolates, gift baskets, sipping chocolate and Love’s book, “Artistry in Chocolate, A Story of Love,” also can be ordered online at www.normanloveconfections.com. In addition, Norman Love Confections chocolates and desserts are offered on 18 Princess Cruises’ ships through the “Chocolate Journeys” partnership and at independent retail locations throughout the U.S. For more information visit www.normanloveconfections.com, follow @normanlovecandy or call 239-561-7215.