Laurent Branlard is the executive pastry chef for the Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin Resort. A native of France, Branlard is a highly accomplished pastry chef who holds the distinction as the only two-time winner of the World Pastry Team Championship. Branlard captained Team USA to victory in 2008 after previously winning in 2002. Branlard and Team USA defeated the top chefs from competing nations in a challenging 2-day 13-hour competition that tested the team’s culinary ability and artistic skills. In between his world titles, Branlard held the honor of serving as a judge for the pastry championship competition and coaching Team USA in the 2006 World Pastry Competition to a bronze medal. He holds the distinction of being named one the Top Pastry Chefs in America.
His outstanding creations have been featured on the Food Network, CBS Early Show and NBC’s Today Show. He was trained in his craft in France and is certified as a Pastry Chef; Chocolate-Maker, Ice-Cream Maker and Confectioner. He holds a CAP degree from a French Culinary Institute in Vincennes. Branlard is most noted for his sugar showpieces, resulting in intricate designs, all accomplished by pulling sugar. Branlard will revamp the hotel’s pastry menus in all restaurants and banquets.
Branlard began studying pastry arts at the age of 16. Before joining the hotel, Branlard was executive pastry chef for the Ritz-Carlton Hotel, Buckhead in Atlanta. He was also executive pastry chef for the Ritz-Carlton in St. Thomas, USVI. He worked throughout France as a pastry chef and caterer. While working as a pastry chef for Bontemps Catering in France, Branlard participated in the country’s most prestigious pastry contest, the “Meilleur Ouvrier de France” (M.O.F. - master of the craft designation in France), an elite honor bestowed upon only few chefs. He was recruited by the noted Philippe Urraca, M.O.F. to be his pastry chef. He also worked for Layrac Catering Company and held numerous other pastry chef positions in France. Branlard trained in chocolate-making under Chef Boucher, M.O.F, one of the most noted chocolate-makers in France.
Branlard has distinguished himself with fascinating sugar and chocolate showpieces and a host of other tantalizing desserts, resulting in intricate designs and awe-inspiring presentations. His proven experience adds an impressive component to the hotel’s culinary team.