Lori Gilmore is the owner and head pastry chef of The Sweet Touch
Bakery in New York.
As a child, Lori adored a book called The Sweet Touch,
which tells the fanciful story of a little girl, Peggy, who wishes
that everything she touches would become a delicious sweet. A
friendly genie grants her wish, and Peggy magically transforms
her surroundings into a roomful of beckoning treats. The black-and-white
illustrations of Peggy’s bedroom gradually turn into colorful
drawings of delicious taffies, chocolates, and candies. With Peggy’s
“sweet touch,” the book came to life—and became
the inspiration for Lori’s dream.
Lori recalls wonderful memories of birthdays, family gatherings,
and holidays that were always centered on cooking and baking with
her family. She often gave friends the gift of a special homemade
treat, knowing even then that the best presents come from the
kitchen. Irish soda bread, Gram’s fudge, and Mom’s
tapioca pudding…bake sale cupcakes, Christmas cookies, and
Dad’s chocolate meringue pie…all of these yummy treats
meant that it was time to celebrate!
While in college, Lori began working in restaurants: prepping
in country clubs, apprenticing with pastry chefs, and working
her way up the line as a cook at the Joshua Wilton House, one
of the most acclaimed inns in Virginia. There, she discovered
her true love of cooking, bread baking, and the art of pastry.
A visit to The Culinary Institute of America confirmed that she
had found her path. As a student in the Baking and Pastry program,
Lori learned classical techniques, honed her skills, and nurtured
her artistic and creative perspectives with the guidance of the
incredible chefs at the “other CIA.”
Since her time at the CIA, Lori has studied under and worked
with some of the industry’s most famed sugar artists and
cake designers, including Ewald Notter, Colette Peters, and Elisa
Strauss. With Elisa, she participated in the Food Network’s
Holiday Cake-Off and The Apprentice: Martha Stewart.
Lori has spent years perfecting her own delectable recipes and
refining her decorating techniques. In 2008, she created specialty
birthday cakes and cookies for some of the top fashion designers
in New York, including Tommy Hilfiger, Donna Karan, and Calvin
Klein, and her pastries were featured in the holiday issue of
Vox Hamptons magazine. Baking truly has become her craft.
Lori personally designs and prepares her edible works of art--from
scrumptious cupcakes, to spectacular, once-in-a-lifetime wedding
cakes, to custom-designed gift cookies with corporate logos--with
her own sweet touch. She loves to share the excitement and joy
that her unique creations bring to any celebration!