Pastry Chef Katy Keefe discovered her passion for baking while learning from her mother in their family kitchen in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. To this day, Keefe still keeps her mom’s greatest lessons top of mind when baking— follow recipes, get creative when you have to, and appreciate the classics. Later, when she learned she could earn a degree in baking and turn her favorite pastime into a career, there was no other option. She attended the University of Mississippi on a full scholarship for volleyball and graduated Cum Laude with a degree in Hospitality Management. She then went on to attend the Culinary Institute of America (CIA) in Hyde Park, New York and received her Associate’s degree in Occupational Studies in Baking and Pastry Arts.
During her time at CIA, Keefe took a pastry externship at the renowned Stein Eriksen Lodge in Park City, Utah. The experience set the stage for Keefe’s career, teaching her the basic skills of a restaurant pastry chef. Following graduation, Keefe joined the esteemed kitchen team at Lincoln Ristorante in New York as a pastry cook for Pastry Chef Richard Capizzi. At Lincoln, Keefe helped create recipes and plate desserts, managed on and off-site pastry-related events, and led the production team for Lincoln Ristorante’s partnership with the Metropolitan Opera. In 2014, Keefe was named Lincoln Ristorante’s Employee of the Year. Throughout her career, Keefe has held stagiares at many prominent restaurants and bakeries including Daniel, Jean-Georges, Mast Brothers, and Dominique Ansel Bakery in New York, and Girl and the Goat in Chicago.
Keefe joined the team at McCrady’s in Charleston, South Carolina, in 2015. As Pastry Chef, she oversees the dessert menu, changing it frequently to coincide with McCrady’s constantly evolving dinner menus, as well as managing the entire pastry department. When not in the kitchen, Keefe can be found spending time on the beach where she keeps an eye out for a good volleyball game.