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Team USA Exhibition
June 3 @ 8:00 am - June 4 @ 4:00 pm
Join us at the Artisan Baking Center for our first ever exhibition class taught by six different bakers from past Coupe du Monde de la Boulangerie teams. This two day seminar will be dynamic, shifting from baker to baker as each makes and presents their products, thought processes and techniques. Each baker will discuss personal anecdotes along with how they applied the rigor, dedication and creativity necessary to compete at this level.
Each discipline with be exhibited:
Baguette & Specialty Breads
Bakers will include Nicky Giusto, Craig Ponsford, Mike Zakowski, Jeffrey deLeon, Solveig Tofte and William Leaman.
Breakfast and Lunch will be served both days, along with an invitation to an intimate Bread Baker’s Guild of America gathering on Monday night.
NICKY GIUSTO is a fourth-generation miller and baker who grew up in the world of bread. In 2013, he won the Grand Prize in the Artisan Baking category at the America’s Best Raisin Bread Bakingcompetition. As a member of Bread Bakers Guild Team USA, he competed in the 2016 Coupe du Monde de la Boulangeriein Paris, in the Baguette and World Breads category. He works for Central Milling Company, developing bread programs and teaching bakers of all levels.
CRAIG PONSFORD graduated from the California Culinary Academy with top honors and opened Artisan Bakers with his family in Sonoma California in 1992. In 1996 his breads won the Gold medal at the Coupe du Monde de la Boulangerie in Paris. He then went on to coach the US Team to victory in 1999. He has coached each U.S. team since and served as U.S. judge at the 2002 and 2005 Coupe du Monde and 2007 Louis LeSaffe Cup held in Argentina. He currently is an instructor at the Artisan Baking Center in Petaluma, California and has his own bakery/innovation center, Ponsford’s Place, in his home town of San Rafael. Craig was an early member of the Bread Baker’s Guild of America and has volunteered as the guild’s chairman for the past eight years. In his teaching at various culinary institutions and in his international consulting for product development and systems optimization he emphasizes quality of ingredients, techniques and product.
MIKE ZAKOWSKI is a graduate of the Culinary Arts program at Kendall College in Chicago, Illinois. When he owned Kraftsmen Baking in Houston, Texas, he was named Best Baker in Houston and won the Best Bread award for his pain biologique during the bakery’s first year of operation. He was the Operations Manager at Artisan Bakers in Sonoma, California for 5 years and currently owns his own bakery, The Bejkr, and markets his creations at local farmers markets in Sonoma County, CA. Mike is a member of Bread Bakers Guild Team USA and competed at the 2010 Louis Lesaffre Cup and the 2012 Coupe du Monde de la Boulangerie in the Baguette & Specialty Breads category, where he and his teammates brought home the silver medal. He was then selected to compete in the Masters de la Boulangerie2014 representing the USA as 1 of 6 competitors.
SOLVEIG TOFTE has dedicated herself to the craft of artisan baking for over 16 years. As head baker at Turtle Bread Companyin Minneapolis, she spent a decade spreading the appreciation of artisan baking throughout the Twin Cities. In 2008, Solveig represented the United States at the Coupe du Monde du la Boulangeriein France. She then spent 6 years on the Bread Bakers Guild of America’s Board of Directors, and currently serves as the Chairman of the Board. In 2011, Solveig was picked as one of the Star Tribune’s Taste 50, and a 2011 Tastemaker by the St. Paul Magazine. In 2016 Solveig was inducted into the Club Elite de la Boulangerie Internationale. In 2011 she opened Sun Streetbakery with her husband Marin Ouimet, which she continues to run as owner operator.
JEFFREY DE LEON a native of Southern California, began his career at Thomas Keller’s Bouchon in Las Vegas, followed by leading the team in Yountville and was part of the opening team for Bouchon in Beverly Hills. He then held the position as the Group Pastry Chef for Farmshop in Los Angeles. As the Executive Pastry Chef for the Grand America Hotel in Salt Lake City, the hotel’s patisserie was named “Best of Salt Lake” and “Best of State”. In 2016 he competed in the Coupe du Monde de la Boulangeriein Paris, winning fifth place, followed by a third place win in the Masters de la Boulangerie.