Rising Star Pastry Chef Boris Portnoy of SucrePunch - Biography

San Francisco, CA


Boris Portnoy is passionate about three things: food, cocktails, and mopeds. A brilliant pastry chef and innovative culinary mind, Portnoy is always pushing the boundaries of pastry with his inventive creations and modern techniques. He always knew he wanted to work with food, and began his professional training in the kitchen at Deux Cheminees in Philadelphia with Chef Fritz Blanc, where he learned to cook traditional French cuisine. After two and a half years, he ventured off to open Restaurant Salt with 2004 StarChefs.com Rising Star Vernon Morales, who introduced him to hyper-modern cooking techniques.

After working together for a year, Morales encouraged Portnoy to spend time in Spain to further his understanding of the avant garde techniques and philosophies behind the country’s “alta cocina.” Portnoy worked at Restaurant Mugaritz with renowned chef Andoni Aduriz outside of San Sebastian, Spain, where he learned more about the application of modern technique and, more importantly, the range of taste.

Upon his return to the States, Portnoy moved to New York to be the opening pastry chef at Cru, the critically acclaimed modern European restaurant led by Chef Shea Gallante. But when the wanderlust struck, Portnoy moved to San Francisco, where he worked at Winterland (where he was named a 2005 StarChefs.com Rising Star Pastry Chef) and Campton Place.

In 2008, Portnoy collaborated with mixologist Daniel Hyatt to establish SucrePunch, a collaborative project to investigate and contribute to the dessert and cocktail culture. Currently Portnoy works as a consultant, helping to develop savory, pastry, and cocktail menus for eateries in San Francisco. When not in the kitchen, Portnoy enjoys working on his mopeds (of which he has a respectable collection) and zipping around San Francisco and Marin County.