Born in Singapore, she fell in love with pastry as a child while she helped her mother in the kitchen, although she did not realize that she wanted to work as a chef until she was 21 years old when she had already started her career in administration. After training at At-Sunrice culinary school, and working for almost ten years in patisseries, restaurants, and hotels, she was recruited by Guy Savoy’s eponymous French restaurant at Marina Bay Sands. There she met Kai Ho, who in 2015 offered her the position of pastry chef at her new restaurant, Taïrroir.
Since she moved to Taiwan, Ella Lai has not stopped researching seasonal products and culinary traditions of the country to translate all this learning into her desserts. Taïrroir is a restaurant that aims to deconstruct Taiwanese cuisine, integrate French techniques, and infuse a global spirit into classic recipes – a spirit that aligns perfectly with the chef’s love of French pastry classics like cream puffs.
Her desserts have different textures, a wide range of flavors, as well as bitter and salty notes. They are creations that even those who do not have a sweet tooth can like, although Lai always makes sure they leave a truly lasting sweet impression.