Meet Katherine, Our Chocolate Chef

Chef Katherine Clapner

is the visionary of the entire Dude, Sweet Chocolate concept, as well as co-founder, co-owner, and Chef of the company itself. Having over twenty years of experience as a pastry chef, Katherine is a force to be reckoned with in the kitchen. The rest of Katherine’s story is no less impressive.

Coming out of the Culinary Institute of America in New York with an associate’s degree in baking and pastry, Katherine headed overseas and got to work. Her first stop in Europe was the Savoy in London, followed a few years later with Windsor Court Hotel, Hotel Splendido and Hotel Cipriani under the Orient Express umbrella.  She trained and held Pastry Chef positions at Four Seasons Hotel (Chicago), Charlie Trotter's (Chicago), Bread with Appeal (Chicago), Kevin Graham (New Orleans), Stephan Pyles (Dallas), Hilton Hotel Convention Center(Austin) and Central Market. She has contributed recipes and consulted with Wholesome Sweeteners, Southwest Vegetarian, PF Changs, Texas HoneyBee Guild and Rocky Mountain High Brands. 

In The Press

Dessert Professional Magazine named Katherine one of their Top 10 Chefs for 2012 and she was featured on Chuck’s Eat the Street in 2014, “Beat Bobby Flay''. Wusthof Knives chose Katherine as a spokesperson and featured chef for their brand (2013-2020). Her diverse collaborations have a wide range including Jim Beam, Breckenridge Distillery, Laphroig, Whistlepig Whiskey, Desert Door Sotol, Angel's Envy Rye Whiskey, Dorcol Spirits, Wynona Orchards, Yaupon Tea, Rahr Brewery, Pork Council, World’s Craziest Funerals, Meatfight, Staff Meal, The Flaming Lips, and Valrhona chocolate. 

Clapner, who now has one store in the Oak Cliff area of Dallas, a full production kitchen / packaging and even facility, is usually found in the kitchen surrounded by an apothecaries’ treasure trove of plants, jams, vinegars, spices that friends bring her back from their travels, and a staff she adores. She remains an active part of the local food community, consulting and eating with some of Texas's greatest culinary luminaries.

Chef's Favorites