A Tart Guy No More, Gareth Whitton Is Proud to Be Australia’s First Dessert Master

dessert masters gareth whitton

In a thrilling culinary showdown that left taste buds tingling and hearts pounding (at the sight of blood), Gareth Whitton emerged as the crowned champion of MasterChef: Dessert Masters. Known for his extraordinary tarts, the kitchen virtuoso has taken the dessert world by storm, leaving a trail of sweetness in his wake.

Over the phone, Whitton tells The Latch that his celebration was short and sweet.

“By midnight, we had a babysitter to let off the clock. So, we didn’t go too wild,” he chuckles. Whitton’s journey to the winner’s circle was nothing short of a sugar-coated rollercoaster, filled with highs, lows, and a sprinkle of unexpected twists.

Gareth Whitton on his MasterChef: Dessert Masters Journey

“I knew I was gonna be up against some tough competition, but at the same time, my philosophy throughout the entire competition was to just trust the process,” he says, reflecting on the early days of Dessert Masters.

In the grand finale, Whitton chose to make a tart — he is the ‘Tart Guy’, after all. But he defends the choice, highlighting the classic appeal of the dessert. “I know Amaury loves his classic cooking, and this was pretty classic stuff,” he says, emphasising the layers of flavour that won the judges over.

During the rush of the cook, Whitton cut himself. In our chat, he explains that it didn’t actually happen on the rhubarb.

“I guess they edited it to make more sense, but that injury didn’t exactly happen how it was shown,” he notes.

“The only thing going through my mind at the time was, ‘I don’t have time to deal with this’, and everyone was telling me I needed medical attention. I just needed a glove and to keep going,” he explains.

Gareth’s Win Is About More Than the Money

Despite the injury, Whitton soldiered on to put up two desserts the judges couldn’t fault. He was rewarded with coveted title of Dessert Master, which Whitton explains meant more than just the money.

“Yes, it was a great opportunity for my business,” he notes, “but I really wanted to break the stereotype of just being the tart guy.” Whitton’s resume spans the globe, from chef de parties in London to head pastry chef at Dinner by Heston Blumenthal. He has over 18 years of experience in the kitchen, and is a stalwart of the industry.

“I wanted to show people who are potential customers at my shop that the tarts are being made by someone who has a lot more to their culinary arsenal — I’m not a one-off opportunist, ” he explains.

Gareth Whitton on What’s Next For Him

As for what’s next, Whitton reveals a lineup of exciting projects, from a cookbook release, to new menu launches at Tarts Anon, and collaborations with fellow contestants. His passion for pushing culinary boundaries promises a future filled with sweet and savoury surprises from the dessert virtuoso.

While MasterChef: Dessert Masters may be over for 2023, the good news is that it will be back in 2024. Network Ten confirmed the show’s renewal at its upfronts in October.

Until then, you can relive the sugar rush, with all episodes of MasterChef: Dessert Masters streaming now on 10 Play.

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