5 Questions with Pastry Chef Josean Jimenez

After working as Chef and Owner at MRKT Restaurant in South Deerfield, MA, Josean joined the team at Inn on Boltwood. In 2016, he was appointed Pastry Chef, allowing him the opportunity to nurture his passion for the sweeter side of the business full-time. Josean has 15 years of culinary experience and has showcased his diverse background throughout various Western Massachusetts and Boston-area restaurants after graduating from the Connecticut Culinary Institute in 2002. Recently, we had the opportunity to catch up with Chef Josean.

How did you choose a career as a Pastry Chef?
I have always had a sweet tooth. So, after many years of working in the savory world, I decided I wanted to change and expand my knowledge of the pastry world.

What influences do you draw on to inspire your work?
I like to use straightforward baking techniques and a minimal but tasteful presentation with colors and textures on the plate to tempt the palate. I love rethinking classic desserts and modernize them with new flavors. We currently feature a re-imagined Strawberry Shortcake on our dessert menu that blends savory with sweet.

What is the hardest part of your job?
Controlling my creativity. I’m always editing my desserts. I like to push the envelope as far as I can. But, I’ve learned through the years of being in the business sometimes we can go too far. At the end of the day, I want the guest to enjoy them.

What advice do you have for those just starting out in the industry?
Never stop learning. Always push yourself further. Travel. Read magazines and cookbooks. Work at as many restaurants as you can before you open or run your own [restaurant].

What is one thing people should know about you but don’t?
I love to travel to bakeries and pastry shops in search of the best almond croissants.

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