1. Please tell us your secret: What do you need to do for arising as patissier of the year from the competition of the sweet arts?
Actually, there is not much you can contribute on your own, except delivering top performances constantly over the years and keeping up with the times, being courageous, taking chances. My advantage possibly is that I have been member of the FACIL team for quite some time now. If I had changed the restaurants more often, maybe I would not have become patissier of the year as many times. At the end, I need to trust that my performance is recognized by others and my name is mentioned often enough when it comes to choosing the patissier of the year.
2. How many times have you become „patissier of the year“ until now?
Overall, I was already allowed to call myslef patissier of the year five times. In 2012 & 2016, I received this title through the Rolling Pin, which is a German directed trade magazine for gastronomy, the hotel & cruise industry. In 2016, Gault & Millau concurred with this point of view and in 2013, as well as just recently for 2019, I received the award “patissier of the year” by the so-called Schlemmer Atlas, which is a restaurant guide for Germany, Austria and Switzerland.
3. What contributed to your professional success in your opinion?
In fact, I just pursued my path in an ambitious, consistent and goal-oriented way, plus I have read lots of books.
4. Where do you get the inspiration for your sweet masterpieces from?
My biggest source of inspiration is nature, that’s why some of my desserts are directly named after it, e.g. „The Forest“ or „The Stone“. But also my journeys ensure constant boosts in creativity, like the ones to Japan, which is the home country of my wife. In addition, I modified and refined recipes with growing experience.
5. Do you have a favourite ingredient, which you would like to use in each of your creations?
That’s definitely Kampot pepper from Cambodia. It’s very fruity and only has a little pungency. I also like to use Canadian cranberries and I’m a fan of Dulcey chocolate by Valrhona. It’s the fourth kind of chocolate after dark, milk and white chocolate and it‘s called „the blonde chocolate“. Actually it‘s white chocolate, which has been conched a little longer and therefore, it caramelized.
6. Your creations are anything but standard. What is your craziest dessert combination?
I actually don’t find my dessert combinations that crazy. A dessert with pumpkin and caramelized bacon, or pickled mushrooms with my current forest dessert come the closest.
7. Sweet dessert or savoury dessert?
8. Have you ever experienced a real fail?
Indeed, I have already experienced a real fail! I was responsible for the dessert at an event with 100 persons, but it was way too hot in the room so that the mousse melted and the whole dessert collapsed. I had no other choice than sending it as it was. This was very awkward and caused me nightmares the following nights.
9. What’s your tip for the next date? Which dessert can melt the heart of a woman?
That’s a tough question. I guess it’s dark chocolate mousse and raspberries.
10. Have you ever considered recording your works in a book? If yes, when can we buy it?
I was actually asked, whether I would like to write a book, but I think that there are already so many cooking books with a similar content. If and only if, I could imagine writing a book together with the whole FACIL team, but this is a huge amount of work.
11. Do you currently have any exciting projects in the starting blocks? Can we see you do some magic somewhere beyond the FACIL?
Soon, a commercial by Volkswagen will be broadcasted with the slogan „What drives you“ and I’ll be part of it. I got this “job” through friends this summer. Apart from this, we are cooking at the Berlinale only every second year, so in 2019 you won’t be able to see the FACIL doing magic there. Other projects are mostly coming in spontaneously.
12. Do you also have a sweet tooth privately?
Absolutely! My favourites are milk & dark chocolate.
13. Thomas Yoshida is a rather untypical name. On the one side, Thomas is a European name and on the other side Yoshida is an Asian influenced name- is it a pseudonym? ;-)
Just a few years ago, I was known as Thomas Gläser. After my wedding, I adopted the surname of my Japanese wife- Yoshida. It might be an unusual name in Germany, but it’s a very common one in Japan. There, my surname occurs as often as the surname „Müller“ in Germany. By the way, this name means "Happy rice field“.
14. Where can we find you, when you are not working on your sweet creations as an exception?
When spending the whole day in the kitchen, it’s simply wonderful to come home and to put my feet up. Moreover, I love spending time in the nature together with my small family and visiting foreign countries to get to know new cultures. On top of that, my two-year-old son is currently learning to speak and it’s fascinating listening to him.