Christina Tosi

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Christina Tosi
Christina Tosi
Born 1981 (age 36–37)
Ohio, U.S.
Education French Culinary Institute
Home town Springfield, Virginia, U.S.
Spouse(s) Will Guidara (m. 2016)
Culinary career
Cooking style Pastry, dessert, French, Italian, Southern American cuisine

Christina Tosi (born 1981[1][2][3]) is an American chef, author, and television personality. She is the chef, founder, and owner of Milk Bar, the sister bakery to the Momofuku restaurant group, with fourteen retail outlets throughout North America.[4][5] By 2012, Milk Bar had grown from one retail sales location in the East Village of Manhattan to nine retail outlets in New York City,[2] one in Toronto, Canada (opened in 2013),[6] three in Washington, D.C. (opened in October 2015,[7] February 2018[8] and May 2018) and one in Las Vegas, Nevada at the Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas (opened in December 2016).[9][10] All retail locations, aside from those in Washington, D.C. are supplied from a central bakery located in Williamsburg, Brooklyn.[2]

Tosi is also a cookbook author.[11] She joined the judging panel of MasterChef on Fox beginning with its sixth season, which premiered 20 May 2015, and the fourth season of MasterChef Junior, which premiered 6 November 2015.[12] In April 2018, an episode of Chef's Table: Pastry[13] featuring Tosi debuted on Netflix.[14]

Early Life[edit]

Christina Tosi at Hot Bread Kitchen

Tosi was born in Ohio and raised primarily in Springfield, Virginia[15] to an agricultural economist father of Italian origin and to an accountant mother.[15] After studying to become an electrical engineer for a year at the University of Virginia,[15] she spent time in Florence, Tuscany, Italy, to see if she wanted to be a translator. Eventually, she graduated from James Madison University.[15] After graduating, she moved to New York and enrolled in the French Culinary Institute's pastry arts program.[2] She entered the culinary field at the fine dining restaurant, Bouley, and then advanced to wd~50.[16] On July 30, 2016, Tosi married New York City-based restaurateur Will Guidara.[17][18]

Early career[edit]

David Chang, the owner of Momofuku, originally employed Tosi[when?] to write his food safety plans and help administratively with the NYC Department of Health.[19][not in citation given] Chang was so impressed with Tosi that he hired her to run their pastry program . There were no desserts on the menu when she came on board.[2] It was from there that Milk Bar was born. When Momofuku Ssam Bar's adjoining next store space became available, Chang encouraged Tosi to open her own shop, which she named Milk Bar. In a Bloomberg article, Tosi describes Chang as "a great adviser and shareholder" in Milk Bar.[20]

Media personality[edit]

In 2015, Tosi was asked to serve on the judging panel for the Fox reality TV cooking competition shows MasterChef and MasterChef Junior.[21][22] She appeared in a television ad for Subaru in 2014.[23] She also did promotional work for American Express, Kellogg's, and Estée Lauder.[24]

Critical reviews of her cookbooks[edit]

Momofuku Milk Bar, Tosi's first book, was published by Clarkson Potter in October 2011.[11] This book mostly contains recipes of the desserts that are sold at Momofuku Milk Bar.

Many reviewers praised her first book. Lisa Messinger wrote, "Tosi is a talented new voice you want whispering in your ear as you bake."[25]

Although reviewers praised the sweet concoctions that were included in the first book, one reviewer[who?] wrote that because the book is not written for the home cook, she found it very demanding to prepare the recipes since they are not tested for use in a home kitchen, some of the ingredients are not easy to obtain (glucose, gelatin and freeze-dried corn powder were mentioned), preparation of some needed intermediate ingredients are quite laborious and many home ovens do not operate in the same way as a commercial oven. Measurements used in the book are both by weight, as preferred by professional cooks, as well as by volume, as usually preferred by amateur cooks and popular food magazines.[26] A reviewer for the Austin Chronicle wrote that preparation of some of the recipes was "a massive pain" to prepare due to the fact that there were many "sub-recipes" to be prepared before making the main item.[27]

Milk Bar Life, Tosi's second book, was published by Random House in April 2015.[28] This book contains recipes for dishes, some savory, that the author and other chefs may prepare for themselves and friends during their off hours.

In contrast, a reviewer of the second book, Milk Bar Life, liked it better since it included recipes for more savory dishes, uses easier-to-obtain ingredients, and appears to be more geared to the home cook than the first book.[26]

Jenny Rosenstrach of the New York Times Book Review wrote of her second book, "It's impossible not to be charmed by the chatty Tosi and her hot pink and bubble-letter-filled never-never land..."[29] The book includes tips like making your own Lambrusco using red wine in a Sodastream.[30]

Other business ventures[edit]

In 2012, Tosi began marketing cookie mixes through Williams-Sonoma stores.[31][32][33] The cookie mix venture was replaced in 2015 by an exclusive distribution deal with Target.[34][24]

In 2018, Tosi and Milk Bar had executed several partnerships, including cookies with JetBlue,[35] a lip balm with Glossier,[36] a clothing and cookie mix collection with Madewell,[37] and SoulCycle's first ever food offering in studios, the SoulFuel cookie.[38]



  • 2012 recipient of the James Beard Rising Star Chef award[39][40]
  • Finalist for the 2014 Outstanding Pastry James Beard award for rising star chefs.[41]
  • 2015 recipient of the James Beard Outstanding Pastry Chef award[42]
  • In 2016, Crain's New York Business included Tosi in their annual list of the top 40 business persons working in New York City who are under the age of 40.[43]

Featured publications[edit]

Christina Tosi has been featured in a variety of national publications:

  • In April 2015, Tosi was featured on an episode of Conan making sweet desserts with leftover candy and a hammer.[44]
  • Tosi was featured on a list of "Most Innovative Women in Food and Drink" by Food and Wine Magazine in 2014.[45]
  • Tosi was featured by Glamour in 2014 in "The Power of Taking Risks and the Magic Behind Momofuku Milk Bar".[46]
  • Tosi has been featured multiple times by the Wall Street Journal.[47]
  • Tosi has been featured multiple times by The New York Times.[48]


  1. ^ Sherman, Lauren (14 January 2014). "The Secrets of a Skinny (Pastry) Chef: The Woman Behind Momofuku's Sweet Treats Spills". Elle. 
  2. ^ a b c d e Leve, Ariel (21 April 2012). "Christina Tosi: 'My diet was crazy for the first 27 years of my life'". The Guardian. Retrieved 16 July 2014. 
  3. ^ "When Life Gives You Lemons". MasterChef Junior. Season 4. Episode 6. 11 December 2015. Event occurs at 15:30. Fox. Archived from the original on 2015-12-25. 
  4. ^ "Milk Bar's New Flagship D.C. Bakery Will Roll Out Experimental Desserts Weekly". Eater DC. Retrieved 2018-06-07. 
  5. ^ "Locations". Milk Bar Bakery. Retrieved 2018-04-16. 
  6. ^ Henry, Michele (19 July 2013). "Momofuku's Milk Bar opening in Toronto today: Now Torontonians will be able to get their crack pie — and eat it too". Toronto Star. 
  7. ^ Frederick, Missy (October 23, 2015). "Compost Cookies Are Here: Momofuku Milk Bar Is Open Right Now in D.C." Eater Washington DC. 
  8. ^ "Cult Bakery Milk Bar Starts Serving Crack Pie in Southwest February 23 [Updated]". Eater DC. Retrieved 2018-04-16. 
  9. ^ Stapleton, Susan (December 30, 2016). "Cereal Milk, Crack Pie and Compost Cookies Arrive Via Milk Bar: Christina Tosi's Milk Bar debuts at the Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas". Eater Las Vegas. 
  10. ^ "Milk Bar opens at Cosmopolitan in Las Vegas". Las Vegas Review-Journal. December 30, 2016. 
  11. ^ a b Andriani, Lynn (9 November 2011). "Baking Rules a Pro Says You Can Ignore". Oprah. Harpo, Inc. Retrieved 16 July 2014. 
  12. ^ Andreeva, Nellie (13 January 2015). "'MasterChef Junior' Renewed For Season 4, Christina Tosi Joins As New Judge". Deadline Hollywood. 
  13. ^ "Chef's Table | Netflix Official Site". Retrieved 2018-04-16. 
  14. ^ "A Complete Guide to Netflix's 'Chef's Table: Pastry'". Eater. Retrieved 2018-04-16. 
  15. ^ a b c d Witchel, Alex (3 May 2011). "Christina Tosi, a Border-Crossing Pastry Chef". New York Times. Retrieved 16 July 2014. 
  16. ^ "Pastry Chef Christina Tosi of Momofuku Milk Bar – Biography". Star Chefs. May 2012. Retrieved 16 July 2014. 
  17. ^ Calderone, Ana (August 1, 2016). "Chef Christina Tosi Is Married! See Photos from Her Camp-Themed Wedding". People. 
  18. ^ Murtaugh, Taysha (August 2, 2016). "Milk Bar Owner Christina Tosi's Foodie Wedding Featured a Giant Naked Cake, Because Duh: The camp-themed wedding looked like a blast—despite the pouring rain". Martha Stewart Weddings. 
  19. ^ "New York State Department of Health". Retrieved 2018-04-16. 
  20. ^ Krader, Kate (November 28, 2016). "Learn the Secret Ingredient to Momofuku Milk Bar's Success: Owner Christina Tosi reveals how she's made a bakery empire, one Crack Pie at a time". Bloomberg News. 
  21. ^ DeJesus, Erin (13 January 2015). "Christina Tosi Joins MasterChef and MasterChef Junior's Judging Panel". Eater. 
  22. ^ Wilkinson, Amy (20 May 2015). "MasterChef: Meet 'scary but friendly' new judge Christina Tosi: The Milk Bar owner and pastry chef joins Fox's cooking competition series tonight". Entertainment Weekly. 
  23. ^ Galarza, Daniela (26 August 2014). "Watch Pastry Chef Christina Tosi in a Car Commercial". Eater. 
  24. ^ a b Bazilian, Emma (7 June 2015). "How Pastry Goddess Christina Tosi Is Bringing Milk Bar to the Masses: The dessert pro talks MasterChef, endorsement deals and Crack Pie". Adweek. 
  25. ^ Messinger, Lisa (July 12, 2012). "Who Knew Cereal Milk Could be so Gourmet?". Creators Syndicate. Archived from the original on September 23, 2015. 
  26. ^ a b Chang, T. Susan (19 April 2015). "'Milk Bar Life', reviewed: guilty pleasures, sweet and savory alike". Washington Post. 
  27. ^ Haupt, Melanie (2 November 2012). "Cookbook Review: Momofuku Milk Bar: Ain't nothing simple in Christina Tosi's cookbook". Austin Chronicle. 
  28. ^ "Milk Bar Life" (Press release). Random House. 2015. ISBN 978-0-77043-510-3. 
  29. ^ Rosenstrach, Jenny (31 May 2015). "Cooking". New York Times Book Review. p. 24. 
  30. ^ Cooperman, Jackie (5 July 2015). "Why your Keurig is your new favorite bartender: Get Silly with Your Sodastream". New York Post. 
  31. ^ Levine, Sara (24 January 2012). "Shortcut: Milk Bar Cookie Mixes". Cooking Channel. 
  32. ^ Salkeld, Lauren (17 January 2012). "Momofuku Milk Bar Cookie Mixes". Epicurious. 
  33. ^ Baker, Lucy (8 February 2012). "Testing Momofuku Milk Bar Cookie Mixes Against Milk Bar's Cookies". Serious Eats. 
  34. ^ "Target x Milk Bar: It's a "Milk Bar Life!"". Target (Press release). 24 June 2015. 
  35. ^ "JetBlue Adds Iconic Momofuku Milk Bar Snacks to Its Premium 'Mint' Service". Fortune. Retrieved 2018-06-28. 
  36. ^ "We're Already Obsessed With the Beauty Product That Tastes Like Birthday Cake". Bravo TV Official Site. 2017-06-16. Retrieved 2018-06-28. 
  37. ^ "Madewell Announced A Collab With Another Brand Fave & We Want Every Single Item". Retrieved 2018-06-28. 
  38. ^ "SoulCycle Now Sells Cookies It Wants You to Eat Before Class". Retrieved 2018-06-28. 
  39. ^ Lower, Claire (3 April 2014). "The xoJane Interview: Momofuku Milk Bar's Chef Christina Tosi". XoJane. Retrieved 16 July 2014. 
  40. ^ "The 2012 James Beard Award Winners!" (PDF). James Beard Foundation. 
  41. ^ "The Complete 2014 JBF Award Nominees". James Beard Foundation. 18 March 2014. 
  42. ^ "The 2015 James Beard Award Winners!". James Beard Foundation. 4 May 2015. 
  43. ^ "40 Under 40 Class of 2016: Christina Tosi, 34, Milk Bar, Chef, founder and owner". Crain's New York Business. 2016. Archived from the original on 2016-06-07. 
  44. ^ "Pastry Chef Christina Tosi & Conan Make Grocery Rolls & Crackle – Conan on TBS". YouTube. 16 April 2015. 
  45. ^ "The Most Innovative Women in Food and Drink". Food and Wine Magazine. September 3, 2014. Archived from the original on May 12, 2015. 
  46. ^ "Chef Christina Tosi on the Power of Taking Risks and the Magic Behind Momofuku Milk Bar". Glamour. 14 August 2014. 
  47. ^ Murphy, Jen (8 September 2014). "For Christina Tosi, Chef and Owner of Momofuku Milk Bar, Running Is a Sweet Treat". Wall Street Journal. (Subscription required (help)).  Alternate Link via ProQuest.
  48. ^ Earle-Levine, Julie (7 July 2014). "The Secret Behind Momofuku Milk Bar's Sweet Strawberry Treats". New York Times. 

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