We wanted to introduce you to Stephanie (a.k.a. Steph), the mastermind behind F&J’s delicious sweet selection. She’s a qualified Food Technologist as well as a certified Le Cordon Bleu Patisserie chef, a trained high school teacher, manicurist and personal trainer!
Where did you grow up?
In quaint Lower Hutt, Wellington, New Zealand – bottom of the north island for those that haven’t been. My father was an artist and built our first family home which sat on a steep hill which overlooked Wellington Harbour. A wonderfully windy city which I still call home.
Started at F&J
Day one! I love working part-time in the friendly kitchen with our chefs.
What time do you start?
I do the afternoon shift from 1pm – 6pm.
What part of your job do you enjoy the most?
I really enjoy trying new things and hearing the feedback from our customers. There’s nothing more rewarding than seeing someone enjoy a well-deserved piece of cake or biscuit that we have created. I’m always trying new things in the kitchen and I love to hear feedback on the F&J selection. If you see me in the café please do let me know what you think!
Where did you work prior to F&J?
I’m certainly not the youngest team member so I have had a fair few roles in my time! One of the most recent roles I had was as a Patisserie Chef in Adriano Zumbo’s Sydney bakery. He was featured heavily on Australia’s Master Chef TV program and is famous for his eccentric macaroon flavours – imagine liquorice or Vegemite!
Heston Blumenthal would be top of the list as, like me, loves the science behind creating the perfect dish. For fellow Kiwi’s, Alison Holst should ring a few bells, arguably she’s New Zealand’s most famous chef who does amazingly wholesome family meals.
Where would we find you in your spare time?
Mountain biking around Richmond Park. The deer make the place somewhat magical.
Has to be an extra hot skinny chai latte with a hint of cinnamon. However since trying F&J’s Matcha Lattes, they come in a close second.
Favourite sweet item at F&J?
Seems odd to blow my own trumpet, however the white chocolate and pecan slice is hard to resist.
Your favourite memory or funniest moment of working at F&J to date?
My favourite moment was when one of our regulars mentioned to our Head Barista that our chocolate ganache cake was the ‘most delicious cake he had ever eaten’. It may be a small compliment, however to me, hearing our regulars enjoy our products keeps me coming to work each day.
“Life is uncertain. Eat dessert first.” – Ernestine Ulmer