Interview with Jason Licker Executive Pastry Chef The Westin Resort Nusa Dua, Bali

When did your “Sweet Career“ begin and how?

I have always been in love with sweets. As a young child I ate every cookie, donut and candy bar that was near me. I eventually was told by a girl I liked that I was funny, but, so I stopped eating the sweets and started lifting weights. A few years later my mother was diagnosed with cancer and placed on a special diet. We started baking together since there were not many healthy alternatives in the market. The joy I found cooking with mother and the memories of having a serious sugar tooth were simply foreshadowing to what I would become in the future.

What are some of your favorite flavor combinations?

The desserts I like to make will balance your palate with elements of sweet, salty, sour and bitter. I do not like sweet desserts that out you in a sugar coma. I like desserts that are balanced. Some favorite combinations are: Milk Coffee & Passion Fruit, Caramel & Miso and Cheese & Citrus.

Who or what is your Inspiration?

Life, itself  is my inspiration. I experienced loss at a young age and realized you get one ride on this crazy roller coaster called life. I challenge myself and rise to the occasion to live each day full and free. 

When you are not at work where do you go for a good pastry?

I do not eat much pastry. I rather go to a Warung and get some nasi goreng with an insane amount of sambal matah. I like it hot……

What is the biggest accomplishment you’ve had in your career?

My biggest accomplishments have been working in different countries and seeing my cooks grow and strengthen their skiils.  I have won a few things, and yeah that’s nice for your ego, but there is nothing greater than seeing someone you worked with take control of their career and become successful.

Do you have any tips for the beginners?

My advice is learning by making mistakes. Become relentless and take chances. Set goals and conquer them. At the end of the day, it is really up to you to create your own path to success.

What`s your favorite dessert?

My favorite dessert is the Pierre Herme’s Praline Mille Feuille. It is decadent, crispy and crunchy praline slap in the face. It is so damn good.

Do you have any projects on the underway?

I am thinking about writing a third cookbook. My first book, Lickerland: Asian-Accented Desserts by Jason Licker and my second book, Baking With Licker: Home Baking With Asian Accents, both available of Amazon globally, have done quite well. I enjoy the process of seeing an idea come to life. It is a huge amount of work, time and money, so I space out these projects over time.  I am also preparing an incredible menu for The Westin Nusa Dua’s upcoming opening of the iconic beachfront restaurant. “Ikan.”

What can we expect to see from the dessert menu in all the dining venue at The Westin Resort Nusa Dua, Bali?

You can expect a variety of tastes and textures that are specifically catered to each outlet.  So, if you go to Prego, you have a modern dessert with Italian attitude. If you go to Hamabe, you will have modern desserts with a Japanese twist.  If you go to the Lobby Lounge, you will have one of my signature desserts that will be unlike anything you have ever tasted. Go to the hotel and eat all over and see for yourself. 

Mention 3 reasons, why we have to come to Westin in Nusa Dua when we look for desserts?

1) The desserts are life changing.

2) The desserts are life changing.

3) Read reasons 1 & 2.