The Gage/The Dawson/Acanto
Mitsu Nozaki joined the culinary team at The Gage and The Dawson as Executive Pastry Chef in February 2014. She adds a mecca of culinary experience from several acclaimed kitchens in Chicago and Florida including Tribute, Boka, Ravenous Pig and Everglades Country Club.
A classically French trained pastry chef, Mitsu believes food should be simple, yet beautiful with taste being the most important element. With a belief in seasonality, pastries are her modern interpretation of traditional French desserts. Her desserts change with the season, in hopes that diners can experience something new every time they visit.
Mitsu was influenced to become a chef by her parents, who have successfully operated a restaurant in Hyde Park, Illinois since she was a child. Her biggest inspiration in the culinary world is fellow chef Julie Petrakis (owner of Ravenous Pig) who told her “Being a passionate chef in the industry means that you live and breath food – you must really love it.”
Mitsu’s heritage (half Japanese and half Thai) is an important influence in her cooking style. Having spent a lot of time traveling throughout Thailand, she takes inspiration from both cultures for her desserts.
A graduate of the Culinary Institute of America in Hyde Park, IL Mitsu also obtained a pastry degree from the Le Cordon Bleu in Orlando, Florida.
Outside of the kitchen, Mitsu enjoys traveling the world. She believes that seeing the world teaches balance in food, improves the palate, and opens the mind to new and unusual foods.