Pauline Mannion

2009 Recipient

Pauline comes from a food-oriented family. Her mother, originally from France, and father have owned a health food business for many years. Pauline’s interest was always in sweets, and she knew since she was very young that she wanted to be a pastry chef. Pauline enrolled in L’Art de la Pâtisserie at The French Pastry School at City Colleges of Chicago and moved to the windy city from Miami, Florida in January, 2009.

The education "exceeded [her] expectations in every way and was better than [she] imagined it could be." Her favorite part of the program, she said, was exam time. She liked the fast pace and more-hectic-than-usual atmosphere. She learned the great importance of organization, and that if everything is well organized and well planned, nothing should go wrong. 

"Chef Sébastien told us that if you know the purpose of every ingredient, you can make anything. You just can’t guess in pastry, you have to be exact."

Pauline greatly appreciated her instructors. "All of the chefs are really wonderful. The recipes are incredible." She was surprised to find that some of her favorite recipes were actually quite simple. She values having learned the technique and the science behind all the recipes. Pauline said she often had inspiration and ideas but lacked the proper tools and instruction to realize her ideas. "Chef Sébastien told us that if you know the purpose of every ingredient, you can make anything. You just can’t guess in pastry, you have to be exact." Using the best ingredients in the program was also great practice for her. "You hear people say that, ‘The French Pastry School uses the best ingredients,’ but they really do – every single thing is the best you can get!"

Following graduation, Pauline moved to San Francisco, California and accepted a full-time position at Quince Restaurant working for Pastry Chef Will Werner.