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Certified Master Sugar Artist, Pastry Chef Instructor
"Learning decorating skills takes patience and practice: I want my students to know that excellence is not going to happen overnight and they have to learn from their mistakes rather than be discouraged by them. However tempting it is, students of the pastry arts cannot focus on the end results alone: they need to focus on what it takes to get there."
Nicole Bujewski is a Chef Instructor in The French Pastry School's full-time programs, L'Art du Gâteau and L'Art de la Pâtisserie, specializing in celebration cakes. Bujewski, a graduate of The French Pastry School herself, was a small business owner for many years, acting as pastry chef and owner of Le Flour Bake Shop and Cake Studio in Chicago, IL starting in 2008. Prior to her career in pastry and cake decorating, Bujewski taught in both elementary and middle school settings after graduating with a Master’s in Education from DePaul University. Her unique background in cake decorating, business management, and education is the ideal combination from which her students can learn.
After working for several years in education, Bujewski took what she originally intended to be a one year long leave of absence from teaching. During her time off, she fostered the love of baking she had gained in her childhood, constantly trying new recipes. When her husband suggested that she do this professionally, Bujewski went in search of the right place to further her skills. She visited The French Pastry School for a demo and didn’t need to look any further. “I knew within thirty seconds of walking in that this was it: the environment, the philosophy of pursuing excellence in everything, the goal of teaching lifelong skills – it was everything I was looking for.”
Within months of graduating from L’Art de la Pâtisserie, Bujewski opened Le Flour Bake Shop and Cake Studio in her home neighborhood of Edison Park. Her business began with a focus on breakfast pastries, classic cakes, and tarts. As demand for custom celebration cakes grew, she expanded that aspect of the business until they became a signature item at Le Flour.
During her tenure at Le Flour, Bujewski was featured on Chicago’s James Beard Award Nominated food program, “The Hungry Hound;” and is a dedicated participant in many community events.
In 2015, Chef Nicole competed in the International Cake Exploration Societe (ICES) Certification Program. Chef Nicole, along with Chef Instructor Sunny Lee, were awarded certification as Certified Master Sugar Artists, the organization's highest possible title. Since the inception of the certification program, ICES has awarded only 29 Certified Master Sugar Artists and 10 Certified Sugar Artists honors worldwide.
She keeps this in mind as she teaches her students. “Learning decorating skills takes patience and practice,” Bujewski explains. “I want my students to know that excellence is not going to happen overnight and they have to learn from their mistakes rather than be discouraged by them. However tempting it is, students of the pastry arts cannot focus on the end results alone: they need to focus on what it takes to get there.”