Michael D.Mignano has been named Executive Pastry Chef for The Pierre, A Taj Hotel on New York’s Central Park. The talented chef, whose personal mission is to transform The Pierre “into New York City’s premier sweet destination,” previously spent eight years at Four Seasons Hotels in New York leading expert pastry teams, including seven years at the classic Pierre Hotel before it was acquired by Taj Hotels, and recently appeared on several award-winning Food Network shows.
In his new role, Chef Mignano will oversee all pastry and confection creation for the 189-room property, including designing seasonal desserts and high tea specialties as well as inventive treats offered in Two E Bar/Lounge, in-room dining and for all of The Pierre’s celebrated private social events, weddings and conferences. A key focus will be developing new sweet creations for catering menus, including impressive dessert buffets for meetings, parties and gala weddings that draw on his extensive two decades of pastry expertise.
Guests may recognize Chef Mignano from his appearances on episodes of the Food Network’s “Sweet Genius” and “Fat Chef” shows, where he wowed audiences with his dessert prowess on the first and adopted a healthy diet and training regimen to lose 100 pounds in just 16 weeks on the second while continuing to manage daily production and operations of his busy Long Island bakery cafe. His remarkable attitude and dedication inspired Food Network executives to select him as “Fat Chef” spokesperson.
His motto today? “I’m half the size and twice the chef I used to be. I’ve rekindled my passion for food and take great pleasure in creating memorable experiences for guests without losing sight of quality, consistency and service.”
Before returning to The Pierre, Chef Mignano spent six years as chef/owner of Long Island’s popular Main Street Bakery & Café in Port Washington, New York, where breakfast, lunch and Sunday brunch menus featured his tempting entrees and signature retro-style desserts. A local favorite was his decadent Main Street Bar, a sweet combination of caramel, cashews, macadamia nuts, chocolate ganache and Rice Krispies on a graham cracker crust topped with Hawaiian Sea Salt, named “New York’s Most Memorable Food Item” by Newsday in 2010.
His prior experience also includes service as Pastry Chef on the opening team for NYC’s Balthazar Restaurant, as Pastry Cook for Aureole Restaurant and Bouley Restaurant in New York, and a year as Executive Pastry Chef for Hershey Entertainment & Resorts in Hershey, Penn.
An alumnus of SUNY Farmingdale and father of two, Chef Mignano delights in spending time with his extended family. He credits his childhood growing up as a first-generation Sicilian in Astoria, NY surrounded by family, great food and the best fresh ingredients as the foundation for his life-long passion to create sweet and savory delicacies.
To experience Chef Mignano’s inspirational approach to cooking, sample his creations at The Pierre or check out his informative how-to cooking videos, such as this one for Savory Cheese & Rosemary Scones.
About The Pierre, A Taj Hotel, New York
After 80 years, The Pierre, A Taj Hotel, New York continues to set the standard for elegance and unrivaled hospitality in New York City. Located on Fifth Avenue overlooking Central Park, The Pierre, A Taj Hotel is an exclusive AAA Five Diamond property and a member of Leading Hotels of the World. Managed by Taj Hotels Resorts and Palaces, the iconic five star luxury hotel underwent a $100 million renovation, updating 189 guestrooms, including 38 suites, as well as the hotel’s banquet and social event spaces. The Pierre’s 11 residential-style Grand Suites come with a private Taj Royal Attaché trained in the palaces of India to flawlessly fulfill every guest request. Two E Bar Restaurant offers light fare, afternoon tea and a stylish bar featuring a no-cover jazz series every Tuesday evening. The Pierre, A Taj Hotel welcomes Sirio Ristorante, the eponymous restaurant from restaurateur Sirio Maccioni of Le Cirque fame.
About Taj Hotels Resorts and Palaces
Established in 1901, Taj Hotels Resorts and Palaces is one of Asia's largest and finest group of hotels, comprising 99 hotels in 56 locations across India with an additional 16 international hotels in the Maldives, Malaysia, Australia, UK, USA, Bhutan, Sri Lanka, Africa and the Middle East. From world-renowned landmarks to modern business hotels, idyllic beach resorts to authentic Grand Palaces, each Taj hotel offers an unrivalled fusion of warm Indian hospitality, world-class service and modern luxury. For over a century, The Taj Mahal Palace, Mumbai, the iconic flagship has set a benchmark for fine living with exquisite refinement, inventiveness and warmth. Taj Hotels Resorts and Palaces is part of the Tata Group, India's premier business house. www.tajhotels.com