La Tarte’s Jared Melamed: Transforming South Africa’s Patisserie Landscape

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Chef Pâtissier Jared Melamed, the culinary force behind recently launched La Tarte, is making significant strides in establishing the highest-end French patisserie experience in South Africa. Jared’s journey, marked by unconventional moments and a steadfast passion for French pastry, has evolved into a remarkable venture that caters not only to luxury hotels, fine restaurants, and local food markets but also to private orders.

Operating from his ghost kitchen in Sandton, Jared and his team meticulously craft La Tarte’s offerings, ensuring careful preparation for all of their clientele. La Tarte’s creations have garnered attention for their unprecedented luxury French appeal, captivating both visually and gastronomically.

Among Jared’s desserts is the classic Paris Brest, a wheel-shaped pastry commissioned in 1910 to celebrate the Paris to Brest bike race. This pastry, along with other offerings such as Tartelettes au Choux Noisette, Charlottes aux Fruites Rouge, and a wide selection of entremets, showcases the meticulous craftsmanship and French finish that goes into each La Tarte creation.

Jared’s dedication to perfection is evident in his meticulous process, involving 20 to 30 days of trialling, exact remeasuring, and ratio perfection for each item before it earns the distinction of being a La Tarte dessert. He emphasises a commitment to the ultimate patisserie experience without compromise.

Driven by passion and an unwavering commitment to his craft, Jared, 35, is an entirely self-taught chef, having never attended chef school. His culinary education spans nearly two decades of diving, travelling, palate training and hands-on experience in kitchens across Southeast Asia, Oceania, and Europe. Inspired by old French master chefs and contemporary figures like Cyril Lignac and Pierre Herme, Jared continuously refines his skills and techniques. “You have to be better than those who have trained as chefs, you have to be a master of every part of the patisserie process. But then there is finesse – you cannot be taught that. You have it or you don’t. I am lucky.”

Jared views his commitment to excellence as akin to a St Honoré Gateau – challenging, show-stopping, and time-intensive. “It may look like a sophisticated luxury but it’s beauty. You can taste beauty.“ says Jared.

In only seven months since its inception, La Tarte continues to receive acclaim from the French community in Johannesburg, as well as locals and top chefs in the region. Jared Melamed, a proud South African chef, is actively working towards securing a dedicated space for his desserts and viennoiseries, striving to deliver an unparalleled, sophisticated French patisserie experience to the discerning palates of South Africa.

You can order online via info@latarte.co.za, and visit Johannesburg’s Morningside Market every Friday and Saturday, Prison Break Market every Saturday or Sunday, or Le Marche Market on the first Saturday of every month.

For more information email info@latarte.co.za