Rising Star Pastry Chef Caroline Schiff of Gage & Tollner - Biography

Brooklyn, NY

November 2020

At 23, Caroline Schiff was living in a cheap apartment with no culinary training to her name, but she knew she wanted to be a chef. She was fresh from her travels through the Swiss Alps and Scotland, where she studied French at the University of St. Andrews. Back in her native New York City, Schiff was excited by the local mom-and-pop scene, but no one would give her a chance—until Chef and Restaurateur Sohui Kim. 

Kim hired Schiff in 2008 at The Good Fork as a line cook, subsidized by working part-time as a cheesemonger at The Greene Grape. When Schiff’s interest settled on pastry, Kim recommended that she go to a restaurant with a high-level pastry program. So she moved on to James Beard Award-winning Chef Galen Zamarra’s Mas (farmhouse), followed by wood-fired grill offshoot Mas (la grillade), where Schiff developed the seasonal pastry menu. In 2014, she moved on to Southern whiskey bar Maysville and subsequently opened the New Orleans location called Kenton's. 

Schiff returned to New York and The Greene Grape in 2016—this time as executive pastry chef. She founded her own consulting business, ParadigmSchiff, LLC, in 2018, in addition to being the head chef at snack bar company Slow Up and showcasing her baked goods at Red Hook general store Fort Defiance. She was also a consulting chef at Edith’s, a Jewish, deli-style pop-up that featured Schiff’s bagels. Now, she is back with Kim and her partners, St. John Frizell and Ben Schneider, to reopen Downtown Brooklyn's historic oyster and chop house, Gage & Tollner, as pastry chef in 2021.