Chef Joanne Yolles’s career as a pastry chef began almost 40 years ago. She attended Tante Marie’s Cooking School in San Francisco, returning to her hometown of Toronto and landing her first job as pastry chef at Fenton’s Food Shop, located next to the much-lauded Fenton’s Restaurant. From there, she moved on to Scaramouche and became well-known for her delicious desserts. Chef Yolles was considered a trailblazer at the time since most restaurants didn’t have a full-time pastry chef role; to this day, her coconut cream pie is the restaurant’s best-selling menu item. After an 11-year run at Scaramouche, she took time off to start a family and eventually returned to the culinary scene as head pastry chef at Pangaea where her desserts were also recognized by patrons and critics alike.
Chef Yolles currently teaches in the Baking and Pastry Arts Program at George Brown College. She has developed recipes for LCBO’s Food and Drink Magazine and her work has been recognized in many publications, including The Globe and Mail and Toronto Star. She was included in Post City Magazine’s list of “Seven Culinary Greats That Changed It All” and cites a major career highlight as baking for Julia Child. Chef Yolles has made several television appearances and is a Fellow of the Ontario Hostelry Institute.
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