| Pastry Chef: JJ Praseuth Luangkhot
JJ French Pastry
3447 Waialae Ave
Honolulu, HI 96816
Monday - Thursday 9am - 8pm
Friday - Saturday 9am - 9pm
Sunday: 12:00pm - 6:00pm
You can also find JJ's desserts at Chai's Island Bistro, Signha Thai Restaurant,
Euro Cafe & Keo's Thai Cuisine.
Driving Direction from Honolulu International Airport to JJ French Pastry
1. Take Interstate H1 East Honolulu
2. Take High way -78 E/MOANALUA FRWY E. 4.9 Mile
3. HI-78 E/MOANALUA FRWY E becomes INTERSTATE H 1 E/LUNALILO FRWY E. 6.0 Mile
4. Take 6th Ave Exit, and Turn left onto 6th Ave
5. Turn RIGHT onto WAIALAE AVE. (Second Traffic light).
6. End at 3447 WAIALAE AVE HONOLULU HI
Extra Parking is in the Rear, turn right on 9th Ave.
Get more driving direction to JJ French Pastry, please go to Mapquest.com
Written by Scott Whitney, features in Honolulu Magazine 2001
It was 1987 and Jinjie Praseuth Luangkhot, or JJ, was a 19 year-old Laotian immigrant in New York who was just looking for work-any work. Through a friend he a job as an ice cream scooper in the famous Maxim's and it was there that the hard-working youngster caught the eye of rising star patissier Jean Marc Burillier.
“I didn't know what Maxim's was about,” JJ recalls, “It was just a job to me. Then one day Jean Marc said to me: ‘Are you ready to work?' So I learned to make ice cream, then the basics like cookies, butter cream, sponge and crème anglaise. Then I became the dessert soufflé maker. Boy, that made me so nervous. All I really wanted to be was a busboy because you could make tips.”
Like others in our series, JJ says he never planned to be a pastry chef. “One day you just feel like' this is what I can do.' You learn to feel the temperature of chocolate on your fingers.”
He and Jean Marc developed the chocolate pyramids that became one of JJ's signature creations. Inspired by I.M. Pei's glass triangle entrance to Louvre, the three inch-high pyramids are filled with a thick dark chocolate mousse that surrounds carefully placed fresh raspberries.
In 1994, at age 29, Jean Marc Burillier drowned at a Long Island Beach. Burillier, JJ and some other chefs had just left Maxim's to open a bistro of their own called Trois Jeans. Unable ot endure working at the bistro without his mentor, JJ moved to Hawaii that same year. “He was my chef and he is the one who built my future. I want to keep his memory alive forever. He is always with me,” JJ says movingly of Burillier.
JJ French Pastry at 3447 Wai'alae is where you can see JJ's work. You can also find his desserts at Chai's Island Bistro, OnJin's, Singha Thai, The Willows and at the espresso bar at Neiman Marcus. In his display case at the Waialae shop you can see the elegant lines of his individual-size cakes and tarts. There are the shiny green tea cakes that almost fluoresce in the afternoon light, or the cocoadusted chocolate raspberry pyramids, or tarts of poached pear in re wine, apple Bavarian, banana chocolate comfit and - with an almost neon glow near the end of the counter – a grenadine pink framboise. All classic. All inventive. All part of a leagacy.