Karen DeMasco is the pastry chef at Hearth Restaurant in the East Village, where she is reunited with fellow Craft alum Chef Marco Canora. There, she is creating desserts that complement his unprocessed and nutrient dense food by using natural sugars, freshly milled flours, and local produce.
DeMasco began her career training under Chef Claudia Fleming in her celebrated pastry kitchen at Gramercy Tavern. This was followed by her first opportunity to run a pastry kitchen at Fore Street Restaurant in Portland, Maine. In 2001, DeMasco returned to Manhattan to serve as pastry chef on the opening team of Chef Tom Colicchio’s Craft. She went on to open Craftbar in 2002 and ‘wichcraft in 2003.
DeMasco was the only pastry chef included in New York Magazine’s Best Chefs roster in 2003 and was named Outstanding Pastry Chef by the James Beard Foundation in 2005.
In May 2009 DeMasco joined Chef Andrew Carmellini to create breads, pastries and desserts for Locanda Verde, his rustic Italian restaurant in The Greenwich Hotel.
DeMasco’s deeply flavored, deceptively simple and irresistible desserts, cookies, and pastries have earned her accolades from The New York Times, Bon Appétit, Fine Cooking, Food & Wine and New York Magazine where Adam Platt called her desserts “impeccable...for my money, the best in town.”
DeMasco’s first book, The Craft of Baking, was published by Clarkson Potter in October 2009.