While some may spend their entire youth working toward a career path of their choosing, the path to the technique-driven world of pastry seemed almost to have chosen Adam Young. Raised in Brandon, Vermont, Chef Adam set foot in his first kitchen at the age of 12. (The restaurant’s owner thought he was at least 16 because of his height – he is 6-foot-5.) Here, at a Victorian-style inn in the area, he was responsible for one of the most labor-intensive (and underappreciated) areas – the dish room.
Gradually, as he rose through the ranks, Chef Adam was exposed to all areas of the culinary field, including butchery and, eventually, pastry. It wasn’t long before the talented and determined young chef soon found himself infatuated with the aggressive and fast-paced atmosphere the kitchen afforded.
When he turned 17, Chef Adam enrolled in the New England Culinary Institute, a rigorous program that instilled within him discipline and focus. As his technique strengthened, so did his passion and resolve to pursue a culinary career. Initially drawn to the savory side of the kitchen, it wasn’t until a chance encounter with French Master Chef Rene Bajeux and Pastry Chef Joy Jessup in New Orleans that Chef Adam discovered the as yet uncharted world of pastry – and fell head over heels.
“I fought it at first,” he said. “My ignorance led me to believe that desserts were just an afterthought. But I learned that the success of a pastry is determined by a strict set of variables. Controlling those variables and working as precisely and consistently as possible is paramount.”
Prior to joining Ocean House as head of the pastry department in 2010, Chef Adam worked as the pastry chef at Quail Valley Golf and River Club in Vero Beach, Florida under the direction of Chef Jose Faria.
“When it comes to grooming and molding young chefs, this guy was the ultimate,” Chef Adam said.
It is this approach Chef Adam encourages at Ocean House, where he continues to oversee a 24-hour pastry operation, which has attracted aspiring young talent to create the recognized products that have become signatures to the hotel brand.
“In the culinary industry, once you yourself have achieved your goals, you have the opportunity to start giving back to the next generation of young talent behind you,” he said.
Excited to deliver what will be the best year at Ocean House yet, Chef Adam said he is looking forward to providing for guests more variety, new techniques and products, and a shining young staff to support him.
“I feel very at home at the Ocean House, it provides the perfect pallet to perform my craft,” he said.