Rising Star Pastry Chef Michael Werrell of Audrey - Biography

Nashville, TN

May 2022

Although Keaton Vasek and Michael Werrell connected on Instagram while attending the Culinary Institute of America, the pastry duo wouldn’t collaborate for several more years. Upon graduation, Vasek went on to work at Gotham Bar and Grill, while Werrell held positions at Betony and Pearl & Ash. Werrell then moved down to Charleston, where he worked at The Ocean Room for one year before heading back to New York. The two united on the opening team of Italienne, with Vasek helping create the restaurant’s bread and Viennoiserie programs as pastry chef de partie, while assisting Pastry Sous Chef Werrell with menu development.

With their skills in high demand, the couple continued to build their resumes at some of New York’s top restaurants. After two years in the pastry department at Eleven Madison Park, Vasek became pastry sous chef at The NoMad Hotel, while Werrell held the same title at Dominique Ansel's flagship bakery before jumping on the Eleven Madison Park train in 2019. Their joint pedigree drew the eyes of Sean Brock, who brought the couple on to lead the pastry program at his four Nashville restaurants: Audrey, The Continental, Joyland, and June. As co-pastry directors, Vasek and Werrell share multiple kitchens but approach their desserts as if they share one brain. Their natural chemistry and creativity led them to create their own company, Trēt Baking Co. Born in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, Vasek and Werrell produce small-batch baked goods with an emphasis on nostalgia, seasonal produce, and expert lamination.