Karen DeMasco, Craft’s pastry chef, is leaving her post to work on a cookbook, she tells Restaurant Girl. This is another blow to normal desserts in New York (Nicole Kaplan’s departure from Del Posto in January was one, too), as DeMasco is a leading proponent of traditional, non-savory desserts. DeMasco was a protégé of Claudia Fleming, Gramercy Tavern’s influential dessert chef, who also carried the torch for conventionally delicious sweet tastes. (Though not cloying — in the interview, she says, “I like desserts that are not overly sweet, but, personally, I will leave the bacon to the hot line.”) Who will fill her place? If durian flan or white-pepper gel starts showing up at Craft, we’ll know that the battle for traditional high-end desserts is officially over.
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