Chef Inspiration | Le Bon Garçon

Top 10 Things I Learned from the French about Amour

Ah, love is in the air…not just because it is February, but also because some of our favorite people at Le Bon Garçon will celebrate their birthdays this month. (hint, hint look for a special promo code coming soon to honor this.) We thought this was a fitting time to reflect with Justin Chao, Le Bon Garçon’s master chef. Justin went to culinary school in Paris at Bellouet Conseil and then practiced his culinary craft at Le Meurice.

Here is what a...

Should you go to culinary school?

By Justin Chao


Many famous chefs, such as Heston Blumenthal from the Fat Duck, never went to culinary school and have found great success in the restaurant industry. In fact, I’ve heard many people say that going to culinary school is a waste of money. In my experience, however, culinary school was very useful and has helped me to become a better pastry chef.


Although going to culinary school worked out well for me, some of my classmates from culinary school did not end up becoming chefs. Many of them did not like the long hours, the...

My pastry internship at Le Meurice in Paris

 By Justin Chao

I learned a lot in culinary school in Paris, but the bulk of my culinary training began when I left the safety of Bellouet Conseil (my culinary school) and started working at Le Meurice. I won’t lie: working in a French kitchen was difficult.  The first day I walked in to the kitchen, I was absolutely clueless.    I made all the rookie mistakes like using my apron as a napkin.  I even spilled a whole pail of pastry glaze on...

Choosing a Pastry School in Paris


By Justin Chao

Petits gateaux at Bellouet Conseil 

Individual cakes at Bellouet Conseil.



Since launching my website, I’ve had a lot of people ask me questions about my culinary training in Paris.  Choosing a culinary school was a tough decision.  I researched culinary programs in the US, but none seemed to fit my needs. I had talked to a few culinary professionals who told me that--while culinary school was a great experience, you only really learn your craft when you start working professionally.  With this in mind,  I...