For Aya Fukai, owning a bakery/pastry shop was never something she dreamed about doing. She always thought she would dedicated herself to working in haute cuisine and she did, working at a variety of fine dining restaurants, including Chicago’s Elysium Hotel, Trump International Hotel & Tower, and Maple & Ash. A few years ago, however, her attraction to creating desserts in a fine dining setting started to wane. Hence the opening of Aya Pastry in Chicago’s West Town neighborhood, where she offers bread, pastries, desserts, cakes, and bake-at-home items for both retail and wholesale customers.
“In my case, I had a hard time continuing with the fine dining part of the job because I realized how inaccessible it was to most people”