Pastry Chef Sherry Yard of Helms Bakery - Biography

Los Angeles, CA

April 2010

Renowned Pastry Chef Sherry Yard’s early education at New York City Technical College and The Culinary Institute of America led her to a career in New York City’s top restaurants, including the celebrated Rainbow Room, Montrachet, and Tribeca Grill. She then moved to the West Coast to command the pastry kitchen at San Francisco's critically acclaimed Campton Place and then to Jan Birnbaum's restaurant Catahoula.

In 1994, Yard joined Spago as pastry chef and quickly made her mark on the Los Angeles restaurant scene. During her two-decade tenure as executive pastry chef for Wolfgang Puck’s empire, she was responsible for desserts at Puck’s many restaurants including Spago, Cut, and Chinois, as well as numerous events including at the annual Academy Awards, Grammy Awards, and Emmy Awards.

Bon App├ętit and the Southern California Restaurant Writers Association both named Yard “Pastry Chef of the Year” in 2000. She was named “Outstanding Pastry Chef” by the James Beard Foundation in 2002 and won a James Beard Award for “Best Baking Cookbook” for her first volume, The Secrets of Baking: Simple Techniques for Sophisticated Desserts. And in 2004, the Women Chefs and Restaurateurs presented her with a Golden Bowl Award.

In late 2012, Yard left Spago to team up with Chef Sang Yoon of Lukshon and Father's Office. The duo is currently working on plans to revitalize the Helms Bakery complex into a dining hall and bakery.