Chef Stephanie Izard is an inventor. Anyone who watched her climb the Top Chef ranks (like I did) during the 2008 season when she ultimately emerged as the popular TV show’s first female champion could see Izard’s ingenious talent that separated her from the pack. And now her culinary magic is on full display every day at her Chicago dessert shop, Sugargoat.
Izard is currently the chef/owner of Girl & the Goat in Chicago and Los Angeles (which opened in summer 2021), Little Goat, Duck Duck Goat, Cabra, and Sugargoat (which opened in November 2020). The dessert shop – located on the side of Little Goat Dinner – is open from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Tuesday through Sunday. They serve a delectable lineup of cookies, cakes, cupcakes, pies, and ice cream.
Signature cookies include chocolate crinkle cookies with a delicate layer or icing and gooey chocolate center and spiced pecan brown-butter cookies that feature a balance of spicy pecan and melted butter with a sweet soy drizzle.
“I had to be home for a week (during the first pandemic-caused restaurant shutdown) and I was working on a menu and working on some desserts and I just sort of started getting more excited about desserts again,” she told the Chicago Tribune at the time. “We wanted to remind people of flavor combinations or snacks that they love and put it into a sweet, fun way that can get a little bit silly.”
A 2011 James Beard “Best New Restaurant” nominee, Girl & the Goat has been praised by high-profile publications such as Saveur, New York Times, Food & Wine, Better Homes and Gardens and others. Little Goat, Izard’s highly successful follow-up to Girl & the Goat, encompasses a diner, coffee shop, bakery and bar. In March 2016, she opened her third restaurant, a Chinese concept called Duck Duck Goat in Chicago’s West Loop neighborhood, and in 2019, Izard’s Peruvian-inspired eatery, Cabra Cevicheria, opened on the rooftop of The Hoxton, Chicago.
Izard was awarded the coveted title of “Iron Chef” after winning season 1 of Food Network’s Iron Chef Gauntlet. Additionally, Izard was the first woman to win Bravo’s Top Chef (Season 4) and is the only winner of the original version of the show to take home the title of “Fan Favorite.”
Among other projects, Izard has a product line called “This Little Goat,” consisting of cooking sauces and spice mixes for home cooks and a nationwide meal kit service called “Girl & the Goat by Stephanie Izard” in partnership with Goldbelly. Izard’s first book, “Girl in the Kitchen,” was released in 2011 and her second book “Gather & Graze” was released in April 2018.
“Sugargoat is your sweet dreams destination, guaranteed to bring out the KID in you. see what we did there?” the bakery proclaims on its website, sugargoatsweets.com. It is a place “where our team carries out goatland's tradition of showcasing the love of fun flavor combinations. enjoy your fondest food memories turned into tasty dessert experiences and continue to make more memories enjoying sweets with friends and family!
“We've got everything from "simple to silly" flavors whether you just want delicious fresh baked chocolate chip cookies, a fun and interesting cake that tastes like fries dipped into a chocolate shake, or want us to take a stab at concocting your dream dessert —we got you!”
Faith Taheny, Sugargoat’s pastry chef de cuisine, grew up loving to bake. From the moment her dad bought her first rolling pin, she realized she needed to bake – and as she and her mom churned out thousands of decorated cookies at Christmas time, she knew it would become her lifelong calling. as a result, she went to pastry school – and following time at various bakeries in the suburbs of Chicago, she found herself on the goat pastry team in 2016, quickly moving into a lead role.