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29 October 1971
William Curley (born 29 October 1971) is a Scottish luxury patissier and chocolatier based in London. Curley is the owner of William Curley Ltd. Since 2007 Curley has won the Academy of Chocolate's 'Britain's Best Chocolatier' Award four times and in 2012 the couple became members of the prestigious pastry association Relais Desserts.
Early life and career
William Curley, the son to a docker, was born and raised in Methil, a small town in Fife. He began his career with an apprenticeship at Gleneagles Hotel, before moving on to train at numerous Michelin-starred establishments. Since his first apprenticeship he has worked amongst highly respected chefs and patissiers in the business, including: Pierre Koffmann at La Tante Claire, Raymond Blanc at Le Manoir aux Quat' Saisons, Marco Pierre White at The Restaurant Hyde Park Hotel (now the Mandarin Oriental Hyde Park, London, Marc Meneau at L'Esperance in Burgundy and Pierre Romeyer at Maison Du Bouche, just outside Brussels. At the age of 27, William then moved to The Savoy[] to become Head Chef Patissier, where he led a team of 21 pastry chefs under Anton Edelman.
William has won a variety of awards including the 'William Heptinstall Award', ‘The Craft Guild Pastry Chef of the Year’ award, ‘Caterer and Hotelkeeper’s Acorn Award,’ and ‘British Dessert of the Year.’ William won Gold at numerous international culinary competitions and events in Chicago, Luxembourg and Basle, and at the Culinary Olympics in Germany in 2004. William has also been named four times winner of the ‘Best British Chocolatier' award by the Academy of Chocolate.
William Curley opened his first shop in Richmond Upon Thames just off the green in 2004, serving a range of chocolates and patisseries. Following the success of Richmond, a second boutique was opened in November 2009 in Orange Square, Belgravia, London. Boasting the same fine selection of chocolates and patisseries as well as home-made ice cream and a brunch menu, William's Belgravia boutique introduced London's first "dessert bars" where customers can sit at the bar and sample a tasting menu of desserts created in front of them by one of William's chefs. Curley’s Belgravia dessert bar features creations such as Mille-feuille au chocolate - layers of hazelnut daquoise and chocolate cremeaux with an orange sauce and muscavado ice-cream and then Rhubarbe sable – layers of shortbread sandwiched with rhubarb parfait and topped with berry sorbet and rhubarb poached in ginger syrup. There’s even an a la carte menu from which customers can top and tail the main event with a pre-dessert and petit fours.
In the summer of 2011, William Curley opened a chocolate concession at the world-famous department store Harrods. His chocolates are available to buy in the Chocolates and Confectionary Room on the ground floor of the store. The William Curley patisserie range is also available at the Harrods patisserie counter.
To celebrate Chocolate Week in October 2010, William an Afternoon Tea at Claridges Hotel in Mayfair, London, which featured some of William's signature creations including his Venezuelan Cadeaux and Sea Salt Caramel Tart.
William then began a regular Afternoon Tea set with the Halkin Hotel in November 2011  and launched his exclusive limited-run Jubilee Afternoon Tea  in the Halkin Hotel in June 2012, featuring an Apricot and Ginger Macaron Crown. In the summer of 2012, William collaborated with the V&A Victoria and Albert Museum in London to celebrate their Ballgowns British Glamour exhibition. William selected four gowns and created 4 patisseries, available as part of Harrods' 'Best of British' Afternoon Tea range in their Tea Room during the Jubilee.
Masterclasses & Workshops
William is keen to pass his knowledge on to others and holds a firm business philosophy of training up the next generation of top chefs. He encourages many of his chefs to attend courses to further their knowledge in the industry.
In addition to training up the next generation of top chefs, William is also very supportive of the public's growing interest in high quality chocolate and its production. He and his chefs provide chocolate masterclasses and workshops, where participants can learn the basics of the art of chocolate making. William has also been known to hold demonstrations and classes at Divertimenti Cookery School. The William Curley team was also the first ever to hold chocolate making classes at Harrods in May 2012, encouraging participants to get hands-on and learn the true art of working with chocolate in the Harrods Gourmet Cook Shop.
In March 2012 William was invited to participate in Faberge's charity event The Big Egg Hunt  to raise money for Action for Children and Elephant Family. William and his team created a giant chocolate egg measuring 1.5 metres. This egg was featured in the window of Fortnum & Mason during the hunt and on 20 March 2012 fetched £7,000 at a charity auction making it the most expensive edible chocolate Easter Egg ever sold at auction.
Books and Publications
William launched 'Couture Chocolate'  in October 2011 which won 'Cookery Book of the Year' by the Guild of Food Writers  and a Gourmand World Cookbook Award. William also launched 'William Curley's Chocolate Manual'  in Japan in 2010 and in May 2014 saw the launch of William Curley’s book Patisserie: A Masterclass in Classic and Contemporary Patisserie 
William Curley is committed to sourcing ethically sound chocolate. The company works exclusively with the Tuscan company Amedei who prioritise in improving the conditions in which the people who grow its cacao beans live. Using only Criollo and Trinitario cocoa beans, Amedei's produce is predominantly sourced from: Venezuela, Madagascar, Ecuador, Trinidad, Jamaica and Grenada.
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