Modern Sweets at Masa’s in San Francisco

A sophisticated chocolate tart at Masa's. (Photo courtesy of the restaurant)

Hong Kong-born and San Francisco-raised, Maggie Leung is turning out irresistible modern interpretations of classic desserts at the elegant Masa’s in San Francisco, a short stroll from the Campton Place Taj Hotel.

Leung, who became executive pastry chef there this summer, has given sophisticated spins to a chocolate walnut tart, made dainty and memorable with a fleur de sel flourish and a scoop of Earl Grey ice cream; strawberry pain perdu with a distinctive rose-geranium creme anglaise; and s’mores with housemade graham cracker ice cream, hot fudge, toasted marshmallows, candied hazelnuts and hazelnut powder between two chocolate cookies.

After studying molecular biology in college, she turned to the science of baking, enrolling at the California Culinary Academy in San Francisco. After earning a degree in pastry art, she went on to work at Masse’s Pastries in Berkeley, where she focused on elaborate French pastries and intricate wedding cake designs.

Afterward, she joined the staff of Americano in San Francisco, before becoming executive pastry chef at the Lark Creek Inn in Larkspur (now the Tavern at Lark Creek), where her lemon-blueberry cheesecake parfait was featured in a story in Food & Wine magazine.

Maggie Leong's version of s'mores. (Photo courtesy of Masa's)

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Date: Friday, 24. September 2010 5:28
Trackback: Trackback-URL Category: Chefs, Chocolate, General, Restaurants

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23 comments

  1. 1

    Wow, beautiful creations! I’d love to taste such desserts…

    Cheers,

    Rosa

  2. 2

    you know i so enjoy places just like this one. the dessert plates are like a work of art. i just love to photograph these dishes. wonderful, always LOVE when you do posts like this.

  3. 3

    always great to see another female pastry chef in the kitchen – need to go back to Masa and check it out…

  4. 4

    Lovely, lovely desserts. Thank you for keeping us up-to-date on all these must-go-to places.

  5. 5

    this is the most beautiful dessert. What a creative and modern way to remake the smore. Beautiful, now my mouth is watering!

  6. 6

    Another great place that makes me want to try! It’s also amazing that thought her major is a common science major in most Asian families that her desire to go into the culinary path is so inspirational.

  7. 7

    awesome just having a look, i know i want to spoon in right away!

  8. 8

    Wish I had the time to enjoy such beautiful dessert creations when I am in SF for BlogHer Food. I need to schedule a separate restaurant tour trip!

  9. 9

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  10. 10

    Another wonderful chef feature! These elegant treats are not only beautiful but sound absolutely delicious. I love her take on s’mores!

  11. 11

    Every time you post food that intrigues me from SF I make sure to pass it onto my ex-roommate who lives there. This is definitely making it into the queue! These treats are so elegant and intriguing!

  12. 12

    These photos are just gorgeous – such elegant presentation and sounds delicious too! I have never tried Earl Grey ice cream yet though probably because I don’t quite fancy Earl Grey tea but maybe the ice cream version could win me over :)

  13. 13

    What beautiful, sweet pieces of art! Hubby and I really have to make it a point go to SF more and explore the world a bit…

  14. 14

    They look like a piece of art rather than dessert, hehe…

  15. 15

    These desserts look incredible!!!

  16. 16

    This makes me crave chocolate so much! I love how elegant it looks.

  17. 17

    Oh, they’re exquisite!!

  18. 18

    I think I need to learn how to be delicate enough to handle those intricacies. I am too rough!

  19. 19

    Wow, that looks great. I need to check that out.

  20. 20

    wow that looks delicious! i’d love to try graham cracker ice cream.

  21. 21

    How delicious! I especially like the s’mores dessert. I bet the hazelnut is a great flavor not found in the traditional version.

  22. 22

    How delicate are they!? Excuse me if I associate them with the fine dim sum here.

  23. 23

    Looks like a work of art, and I’d love to sample some of the treats she turns out. Congratulations to her on her promotion – it looks well deserved.

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