Thomas Keller

Our Team

Thomas Keller Chef / Proprietor
Sandra Bohlsen General Manager
Chad Palagi Chef de Cuisine
Elaine Smyth Pastry Chef
Michel Couvreux Beverage Director
Hak Soo Kim Head Sommelier
Portrait of Per Se pastry chef, Elaine Smyth

Elaine Smyth

Pastry Chef

Elaine Smyth

As Pastry Chef for Per Se, Elaine Smyth oversees the pastry kitchen from team development to menu collaboration.

Since her arrival in 2012, Elaine has been instrumental in shaping the restaurant’s pastry research and development. Her journey from Chef de Partie to Bread Baker, Sous Chef and Culinary Liaison has provided her with a deep understanding of Per Se’s inner workings and the culture running through it.

Food has always been a source of fascination for Elaine, beginning with her mother and grandmother, who nurtured her early interest in cooking and baking, teaching her to prepare miniature apple tarts, quiches, queen cakes and mousses. As a young girl, her parents took her to lunch at McNean House, where she vividly remembers the entire menu devoted to dessert, which further encouraged her fascination. During her college summers, she also credits working in a one hundred twenty-five-year-old hotel in Cape May for whetting her appetite for a life in the kitchen.

Before joining the Thomas Keller Restaurant Group, Elaine honed her skills as a commis and chef de partie at Gordon Ramsay at Claridge’s, later advancing to roles at The Devonshire and Gordon Ramsay au Trianon. Since becoming a part of TKRG, she has twice received the group's scholarship, studying cocoa farming in Peru and learning traditional salt raking in Brittany with Chef Olivier Roellinger.

Elaine’s interests extend beyond the kitchen, with a background in history and political science, holding both bachelor’s and master’s degrees from Trinity College Dublin.