- TOUR PACKAGE
- ABOUT CHEF JENNY
- OPTIONAL TOURS
CHEF JENNY MCCOY
Jenny enrolled in the Baking and Pastry Program at Chicago’s Kendall College, just after graduating from high school, on a whim. Knowing she wasn’t ready to enter college proper, she decided, “If I like baking, I’ll have a job; if I don’t, I’ll know how to make great birthday cakes—where’s the harm?” Lucky for Jenny, she fell in love with the kitchen and landed positions in a variety of Chicago’s top restaurants, including Charlie Trotter’s, Blackbird, Gordon and Bittersweet Bakery. It was in these kitchens where Jenny learned to refine her palate and develop her talent for composing seasonal desserts.
Following her formative experiences in fine dining, Jenny took a brief hiatus from professional baking and traveled to various countries in Europe, South and Central America to broaden her culinary vocabulary. With an interest in food beyond the kitchen, she also returned to school and completed a BA in Food Writing at DePaul University.
When Jenny returned to the pastry kitchen, it was in New Orleans. There, she had the opportunity to oversee three restaurant pastry departments for Emeril Lagasse, as well as contribute weekly to the Cooking Blog at Emerils.com. While working at Emeril's Delmonico, Jenny was a nominee for the PastryScoop.com Best Dessert Menu Award in 2006. It wasn’t long, however, before she felt the pull of New York City’s vibrant culinary scene; she moved north a few years later.
While in New York City, Jenny was the opening pastry chef at Marc Forgione, and executive pastry chef for A Voce, where she ran pastry operations for both their Madison Square and Columbus Circle locations. She then moved on to work for Tom Colicchio at his flagship restaurant, Craft, where she was influenced by her varied pastry background and knowledge of ingredients and flavors. In September 2011, ten years after Craft opened, she helped the restaurant earn its second three-star review from The New York Times. She was also awarded the 2011 NYC Rising Star Pastry Chef Award from StarChefs.com.
In 2012, Jenny stepped out of restaurants to co-found Cissé Trading Company, a line of gourmet and fair trade hot cocoa and baking mixes; and to work with leading companies such as Starbucks, the Almond Board of California, Vitaprep, Crate & Barrel, and Chinet as a tastemaker and brand ambassador. Jenny simultaneously followed her dream to teach others the art of baking, as a chef-instructor at the prestigious Institute of Culinary Education in NYC.
In 2018, Jenny and her family moved back to her hometown, Chicago, where she consults with small food producers to help them commercialize their products for grocery store sales, and operates a micro-bakery specializing in modern French pastries with a cultish following.
Jenny is also the author of two cookbooks, Jenny McCoy’s Desserts for Every Season and Modern Eclairs: And Other Sweet and Savory Puffs, and is the host of several online baking and cake decorating courses on Craftsy.com, with over 75,000 student subscribers. Throughout her career, Jenny has appeared in many print and media outlets for her work as an authority in the baking and pastry industry.
Highclere Castle is a Grade I listed country house built in 1679 and largely renovated in the 1840s, with a park designed by Capability Brown in the 18th century. Highclere Castle has been used as a filming location for several films and television series, including 1990s comedy series Jeeves and Wooster, and achieved international fame as the main location for the historical drama series Downton Abbey (2010-15) and the 2019 film based on it.
Cost of this optional visit and tour of Highclere Castle (Downton Abbey) is $128.97 per person.
Warwick Castle is a medieval castle developed from an original built by William the Conqueror in 1068. Warwick is the county town of Warwickshire, England, situated on a bend of the River Avon. The original wooden motte-and-bailey castle was rebuilt in stone in the 12th century. During the Hundred Years War, the facade opposite the town was refortified, resulting in one of the most recognisable examples of 14th century military architecture. It was used as a stronghold until the early 17th century, when it was granted to Sir Fulke Greville by James I in 1604. Greville converted it to a country house and it was owned by the Greville family, who became Earls of Warwick in 1759, until 1978 when it was bought by the Tussauds Group. In 2007, the Tussauds Group merged with Merlin Entertainments, which is the current owner of Warwick Castle.
Cost of this optional tour to see the historic Warwick Castle is $147.97 per person.
TESTIMONIALS FROM PAST ENGLAND TOURS:
The accommodations you provided were first rate and were in great locations. The rooms were beautiful and the areas felt safe. I also believe my husband would have a great time on one of your trips. We will definitely be checking it out. Mostly I understand you and your staff spent a lot of time planning and executing such great plans for a wonderful vacation for us all and I wanted to tell you I really appreciate it. I am looking forward to another trip in the future."