Cedric Grolet & Airelles

The iconic pastry chef looks back to his beginnings, and forward to his first mountain project at Les Airelles Courchevel.

Your career has taken you from Puy-en-Vélay to Paris, and now to the four corners of the world. What has been the common thread guiding you since the beginning?

The first common thread is, of course, hard work and the desire to surpass oneself every day. Next comes the team; teamwork is very important to me, and finally, creativity. All guided by the seasons, to offer creations in harmony with nature.

You share your recipes and techniques with your community, which requires a lot of time and preparation: what drives you to do it?

The most important thing is that I don’t feel obliged to do it; it’s a real work tool. It’s part of who I am, and it’s mainly the feedback from my customers that pushes me to do it. Everyone uses social media in one way or another. As a pastry chef, I want to communicate about my work as intelligently as possible and, thanks to my videos, my followers gain a better understanding of pastry. I try to bring a touch of magic and creativity, and to listen to them by being present on social media.

This is your first mountain project. How does this environment inspire you?

The opportunity to create new creations adapted to the place. With the environment, the snow, the mountains, we seek that comforting side, and it pushes me to create a new menu different from what you can find in Paris, for example.

What inspired you about Les Airelles the first time you walked through the hotel’s doors?

What I appreciate about Les Airelles is the feeling of being “at home”. Everything is thought out and done so that you feel comfortable; there is a real cocooning spirit. That’s exactly what I like and what I’m looking for.

What creations have you imagined for Les Airelles? What inspired you?

The flagship creation that I can already share with you for Courchevel is the pine cone, directly inspired by the region. Other pastries specially designed for the place will follow depending on the new ideas that emerge!