Want to know more about Chef Sugar? Chef Heidi started baking at a very early age under the influence of her Grandmother and Mom who celebrated each occasion with delectable European style confections. With years of baking at home she decided that formal training was a key to success in the culinary world and opted to attend Scottsdale Culinary Institute-Le Cordon Bleu where she graduated with an Associates degree in culinary arts and restaurant management.
At the end of her schooling she was offered a fellowship at SCI where she assisted in teaching the restaurant operations at L’Ecole restaurant and also spent some
time assisting in the Confectionery Showpieces class. After an extended 8 month fellowship a move was in order and Chef Heidi returned to her hometown, Colorado Springs where she worked as Executive Pastry Chef at Mackenzie’s Chophouse for nearly three years. Her experience there allowed for much learning and creativity while actively becoming involved in the community.
Once Chef Heidi became comfortable with effectively running a pastry program she felt that a big city experience was necessary for rounding out her career and she moved to Las Vegas. After only a few days in Las Vegas Chef Heidi was offered the Executive Pastry Chef position at Aquaknox at the Venetian Hotel where she assisted in the opening of the award-winning establishment. Aquaknox provided an outlet for more refined pastry and this was a time to grow and become truly great at the art of pastry.
After a year in Vegas Chef Heidi had a new journey in mind and returned to Colorado Springs to open Amuse Gourmet. While getting Amuse Gourmet underway she also became the Executive Pastry Chef at the Cliffhouse in Manitou Springs where she managed the pastry program for nearly two years. She has also done consulting for local and regional restaurants to develop menus and train staff for multiple pastry programs.
Leaving the Cliffhouse to focus solely on Amuse Gourmet proved to be a positive move as Amuse Gourmet and has become an award-winning company in the Colorado Springs area known for European confections and custom designed wedding cakes.
While building Amuse Gourmet and Chef Sugar’s Cakes and Confections Heidi also spent nearly three years running the pastry department at Paragon Culinary School where she implemented a progressive curriculum from basics of baking to advanced European pastry, confectionery showpieces and more. She has a great love for teaching and sharing with up-and-coming chefs her unique take on the pastry world.
In October of 2010 Chef Heidi opened Chef Sugar’s, a cake shop in north Colorado Springs, specializing in custom cakes and weddings. Chef Sugar’s offered a unique bakery/cake studio concept with a chic lounge where Heidi and her creative staff focused on all the latest trends in everything sweet, made from the best ingredients available.
Shortly after opening Chef Sugar’s, Heidi had the opportunity to participate in Food Network Challenge where she dazzled on camera while creating an “Awesome 80’s” themed cake in an 8 hour competition. Pleased with having earned third place and to have participated in her first Food Network Challenge, she hoped to return to have another chance to compete and was able to do so on Halloween Wars, season 5 where she and her team created multiple winning showpieces and made it through the first three weeks of competition. Their team still boasts three pieces that are on the top 20 creations for the tv series which now is on it’s 8th season. Shortly before the closure of Chef Sugar’s on Dec 31, 2019 Heidi was given the opportunity to appear again on the reboot of Food Network Challenge, season 14 nearly 10 years after her first appearance, and this time she took home the win and got some much needed redemption!
Chef Heidi is currently working on her first cookbook as she is eager to share her recipes and learned methods from her 20 year career! While she is not currently baking or creating professionally as she has opted to seek a career off her feet for health reasons, she still very much wants to remained tied to the pastry community and will be launching a blog and video in addition to the cookbooks and hopes to have future opportunities to return to Food Network where she can continue to create! She remains committed to serving the community and happily participates in many charitable events and is happy to continue her philanthropy. Heidi is now running a travel company called Jetset Adventures where she gets to work on another passion and enjoys hunting for amazing travel adventures for people across the globe! http://www.facebook.com/jetsetadventuresco
With over 20 years of professional experience in the culinary industry including all areas of the business Chef Heidi is a leader in the pastry arts and has much to offer. Keep an eye out for updates on upcoming cookbooks, blogs, videos and more!