Celebrated Pastry Chef Dominique Ansel of Cronut™ Fame Speaks to Graduates


Hyde Park, NY – Dominique Ansel, the pastry chef behind the Cronut craze, advised graduates of The Culinary Institute of America to remain true to themselves in an industry that can be challenging. Chef Ansel delivered the commencement address at the college’s New York campus on December 18.

The chef and owner of two eponymous bakeries in New York City and one in Tokyo introduced the hybrid croissant/donut in May 2013. Within days, lines were forming around the block for the trademarked pastry, which TIME magazine named one of the best inventions of the year.

“This is not an easy industry. It requires a lot of time, a lot of passion, a lot of hard work,” Chef Ansel told recipients of CIA degrees in Baking & Pastry Arts and Culinary Arts. “You are going to give so much more than you receive, especially in the beginning. But, at the end, when you look at how many people you made happy, it is really, really satisfying.”

Before opening his first bakery in 2011, Ansel was executive pastry chef at Daniel in New York City. During his time there, the restaurant received Michelin three-star ratings and a James Beard Foundation Award for Outstanding Restaurant of the Year. He earned his own James Beard Award as Outstanding Pastry Chef in 2014 and was a 2015 recipient of France’s Ordre du Mérite Agricole award for dedication to promoting French cuisine and culture. Dessert Professional magazine proclaimed him one of the “Top 10 Pastry Chefs in the United States” in 2009.

The entire graduation ceremony can be seen online.

Photo Captions and Hi-Res Images:

Photo 1: Dominique Ansel, the pastry chef behind the Cronut craze, addressed graduates of The Culinary Institute of America at the college's New York campus on December 18, 2015. (Photo credit: CIA/Phil Mansfield)
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Photo 2: Pastry chef Dominique Ansel takes a photo—an “Anselfie,” he calls it—with graduates of The Culinary Institute of America. Ansel, known worldwide for the Cronut, was commencement speaker at the college on December 18, 2015. (Photo credit: CIA/Phil Mansfield)
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Jeff Levine
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Founded in 1946, The Culinary Institute of America is the world’s premier culinary college. Dedicated to driving leadership development for the foodservice and hospitality industry, the independent, not-for-profit CIA offers associate degrees in culinary arts and baking and pastry arts; bachelor’s degree majors in management, culinary science, and applied food studies; and executive education through its Food Business School. Its conferences and consulting services have made the CIA the think tank of the food industry in the areas of health & wellness, sustainability, world cuisines & cultures, and professional excellence & innovation. The college also offers certificate programs and courses for professionals and enthusiasts. Its worldwide network of 48,000 alumni includes leaders in every area of foodservice and hospitality. The CIA has campuses in New York, California, Texas, and Singapore.

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