Known for his exception works as Chef Christian Faure is the owner of the award-winning Montreal restaurant and pastry shop Maison Christian Faure. With big plans of opening a second location in Toronto in spring/summer 2016, this boutique and café will offer patrons a selection of hand-crafted sweet and savoury indulgences including gateaux, mille-feuilles and éclairs and will bring his acclaimed “Snacking Chic” menu to Toronto which offers a variety of luxury plates including gourmet salads, sandwiches and quiche at an affordable price-point.
We sat down with Chef Christian Faure to learn more about his journey to become a chef. To learn more, read part one of our interview here.
What has been your biggest achievement/obstacle so far in your career?
The biggest obstacle in my career so far has been finding the balance between personal life and professional life. A big part of my professional life is needing to work during times when people celebrate with their loved ones – weekends, holidays and evenings. Because celebrations typically revolve around pastries, I rarely get an opportunity to attend since I’m usually baking for them. For example, I have been invited to a lot of wedding celebrations but have never been as a guest. However, as a Chef, I have frequented many weddings but to deliver the cakes. Now that I’m established and far enough along in my career, I’m looking forward to finding that balance and spending more time with my friends and family.
What made you decide to expand to Toronto?
We get many customers at our Montreal location who are from Toronto and they always ask us “when we will be opening in Toronto?!” We’ve decided to move to Toronto this year because we feel as though the culinary and food scene is eager to embrace international pasty, specifically French pastry. There are already fabulous French chefs in Toronto such as Daniel Boulud. Now there is a place here for the French macaron. By expanding to Toronto, we also hope to introduce the city to a new selection of French pastries they likely haven’t tried before.
We are excited to be building on our business! The Toronto location will make the Montreal location more strong and Montreal with make Toronto stronger.
What is your favourite thing to “snack chic” on?
“Snacking Chic” is the name I came up with for our lunch/ brunch menu. It represents fresh, light eats that are made from good quality products but is not too expensive for the customer. Take our Lobster salad in a large puff pastry. It’s not too heavy on the stomach, is perfect for a quick snack and we make it fresh daily. My personal favourite is the Sandwich de Boeuf- thin sliced house roasted prime rib on light brioche with Dijon mustard and cornichon pickles. Served with a small salad, it’s perfect for lunch and you’ll still be able to carry on with your day without feeling tired or lethargic from a heavy lunch. Our lunches can be enjoyed for around $20.00.
Do you have any advice for aspiring chefs?
My advice to aspiring chefs is to love what you do every day. There are a lot of sacrifices you must make to be a pastry chef, and not everyone will understand. You have to work weekends, evenings and through holidays. You are out of bed and at work before the sun rises and everyone else is still sleeping. You do this to be the best pastry chef you can be. Be proud of your chef jacket, fall in love with it – it can doors and grant you with amazing opportunities to travel the world. The sacrifices you make when you are learning your craft will pay off for you in the future. It is very important to go to school and study. But also, you need to practice what you are being taught. You need to practice over and over and over again. Pastry is an art that you develop, not just an equation that you memorize. As a student you will benefit from listening to your professors or your chefs. You will go further if you can really listen to all that they know even if you have heard it before. Some define success by the work you do, but in pastry, your work is what defines your success.