An honors graduate of Harvard College with a degree in Applied Mathematics and Economics, Joanne left a career as a management consultant to enter the world of professional cooking.
She started as garde-manger cook at Boston’s renowned Biba restaurant, then worked as a pastry cook at Bentonwood Bakery in Newton, and in 1995 was hired as Pastry Chef at Rialto restaurant in Cambridge.
Joanne moved to New York City in 1997 to work in the cake department of the critically acclaimed Payard Patisserie and Bistro. Returning to Boston a year later with dreams of opening up her own pastry shop, she brought her French and American training to Mistral where she was the Pastry Chef until summer of 2000.
In 2000, she opened Flour, a bakery and café, in Boston’s South End. Flour features breakfast pastries, breads, cakes, cookies, and tarts as well as sandwiches, soups, and salads. In 2007 she and her business partner Christopher opened a second branch of Flour in the Fort Point Channel area, in 2010 a third branch in Cambridge near MIT and Central Square, in 2013 a fourth branch on Clarendon Street in the Back Bay, in 2016 a fifth branch in Harvard Square and a sixth in Cambridgeport, and in 2017 a seventh branch on Dalton Street in Back Bay.
Flour has been featured in Gourmet, Food&Wine, Bon Appetit, the New York Times, Conde Nast Traveler, Lucky Magazine, Inc. Magazine, and Boston Magazine and has received numerous Best of Boston awards. Flour was also featured on Throwdown with Bobby Flay on the Food Network in which Joanne’s sticky buns won over Chef Flay’s.
Joanne’s energetic commitment to excellence extends beyond the kitchen. She writes pastry articles and reviews cookbooks for Fine Cooking magazine. She teaches classes and advises pastry cooks both within the bakery and at area cooking schools. She and Christopher opened a Chinese restaurant called Myers + Chang in the South End neighborhood in the fall of 2007; it receive a 4-star review from the Boston Globe. An avid runner, she competed in every Boston Marathon from 1991 – 2006. She is the author of four cookbooks: Flour, Spectacular Recipes from Boston’s Flour Bakery+Cafe; Flour Too, Indispensable Recipes for the Cafe’s Most Loved Sweets and Savories; Baking with Less Sugar: Recipes for Dessert using Natural Sweeteners and Little-to-No White Sugar, and Myers+Chang at Home: Recipes from the Beloved Boston Eatery. She is currently working on her fifth cookbook Pastry Love. Joanne is the winner of the 2016 James Beard award for Outstanding Baker.