Established in 2010 to provide chocolate to fine dining restaurants in the San Francisco Bay Area, La Forêt has developed into a true chocolate atelier. Calling on her pastry training, Wendy works closely with chefs to design and execute chocolates with unparalleled attention to flavor, texture, and presentation. She created her innovative “allocation” program to bring these limited-production creations to a wider public and stocks her Napa micro-boutique with seasonal treats.
Before opening La Forêt, Wendy trained at Le Cordon Bleu Paris and honed her craft at some of the industry’s top establishments including Patrick Roger in France and, most recently, The French Laundry in Yountville, California. In 2005, Wendy received the prestigious Julia Child Endowment Fund Scholarship from the International Association of Culinary Professionals. Her program included study at the École Lenôtre and traveling for several months throughout France visiting prominent chocolatiers.
La Forêt has been featured in many publications, newspapers, and blogs including Food & Wine, Martha Stewart Living, Brides Magazine, The San Francisco Chronicle, Edible Marin & Wine Country, Eater SF, Zagat, AFAR, and Davidlebovitz.com.
In a previous life, Wendy earned a B.A. summa cum laude in Film Studies from the University of Minnesota and an M.A. in Communications from the University of Iowa with a focus on European cinema. She has recently returned to academia as part of the faculty at The Culinary Institute of America in St. Helena, California.
What’s in a name?
During a trip to France in 2005, Wendy and her husband, Mark, frequently heard the refrain “Sherwood… Aah, la forêt!” while making reservations at country inns and restaurants. The idea of the forest and the nod to Wendy’s French training seemed a perfect fit and the dream of La Forêt was born.
“Over the past 15 years, I’ve run the gamut of culinary positions in the Napa Valley. From fine dining pastry chef to chocolatier to business owner, the team at Pac Gourmet has been with me every step of the way. That sort of continuity and reliability is rare these days.” – Wendy Sherwood