Nicholas Pine

Nicholas Pine

Co Co. Sala

Nicholas Pine is the assistant pastry chef of Co Co. Sala, Washington D.C.’s luxurious chocolate boutique, lounge and restaurant. He manages Co Co. Sala’s dessert, pastries, and chocolate production, and works along side Executive Chef Santosh Tiptur to create beautiful chocolate sculptures, sugar showpieces, and elaborate dessert buffets for private parties, special events, and charities.

Having developed a love for chocolate and art at an early age, Nicholas channeled his passion into a career choice. He graduated from the professional pastry arts program at L’Academie de Cuisine and received other certifications from prestigious national chocolate schools, including L’École Valrhona Brooklyn and Jean-Marie Auboine Chocolatier, Las Vegas.

From handcrafting artisanal chocolates with a range of flavor combinations from the familiar to the global and exotic to assisting chef instructors in pastry workshops, Nicholas is always looking for new challenges and opportunities to develop and expand his chocolate arts.

Richie Budiharto Pratadaja

Richie Budiharto Pratadaja

FIKA NYC

I was born in Jakarta, Indonesia. I moved to United States in 2004 to study industrial design. However, I spent a lot of time watching Food Network channel on my free time that made me decided to go to culinary school and pursue my dream. I want to create something that makes people happy. So, I enrolled and graduated from Le Cordon Bleu College of Culinary Arts in Scottsdale in Pastry and Baking program. While I was in sc hool, I assisted my instructor in ACF Pastry Chef of The Year Chef Tracy DeWitt. I also assisted in Chef Stephane Treand’s chocolate showpiece class at the World Pastry Forum 2010. That’s the moment I know that I want to be a chocolatier. After I graduated, I work at the Bellagio Hotel, Las Vegas for Chef Jean-Marie Auboine. Then I moved to New York and worked for Jacques Torres as sous chocolatier under Chef Christophe Toury. Now, I work for FIKA NYC under Chef Håkan Mårtensson where I have the freedom to create what I desire from confectionary to chocolate sculpting.

Natalya Shapiro

Natalya Shapiro

Chef Brulee Chocolates and Gateaux

Natalya is a native of Ukraine who moved to the U.S. at age 17.

She received her training in the chocolate arts from the Ecole Chocolat, where Natalya become a professional chocolatier.

In 2011 she established the Chef Brulee Chocolate and Gateaux Company located in Roswell Georgia

Annie Rupani

Annie Rupani

Cocao & Cardamom

Annie Rupani was born and raised in Houston, Texas, but spent four years in Massachusetts , where she obtained her B.S. degree in Anthropology and Religion from Boston University. Her fascination for the world led her to London, U.K. for a semester, while her interest in religion and language led her to Amman, Jordan to again study abroad. Throughout her travels around the world, she gained a special appreciation for food and began her love affair with the culinary arts. Rupani would spend her free time watching Food Network shows and researching recipes online to practice in her tiny dorm room kitchen for her weekly gourmet cooking sessions.

Over the summer of 2010, Rupani participated in a pageant and was crowned Miss Pakistan World 2010. This experience brought her Pakistani roots to the forefront. The smell of cardamom, cumin, coriander, fennel and turmeric were spices that regularly flowed through her house, but were rarely appreciated until Rupani began to see food in a different light and began looking at nutrition and health. She began to explore the diversity and versatility of spices and turned to dark chocolate for her daily antioxidant laden dessert. Her fascination with dark chocolate grew as she researched the process of cacao beans to chocolate bars and the regional differences in taste and flavor from region to region.

After she graduated from Boston University, she began studying for her law school admissions exam, and took breaks by reading books about chocolatiering. This led to ordering 30 lbs. of couverture chocolate, a mini-tempering machine, and a very messy kitchen. Three days after the test date, Annie made her way to Pakistan where she spent the next six months working on Early Childhood Development projects with the Rupani Foundation. With chocolate constantly on her mind, she found a pastry school in Malaysia and attended a week of chocolatiering courses in Kuala Lumpur. Once she completed her projects in Pakistan, she made her way back to Houston determined to get her hands back on chocolate. What was just a weekly break from the LSATs turned into a passion for the skill and art of chocolate. What followed was the infusion of flavors from her upbringing and travels that enhanced these chocolate bites of art.