Best of Boston

2004 Best Pastry Chef

Kristen D. Murray, No. 9 Park

Some desserts are among life’s sweetest rewards precisely because they aren’t too sweet. Kristen D. Murray understands this. Consider her walnut pain perdu, a soft and almost custardy bread laden with tart red currants, rich, nutty crunch, and tangy water-buffalo-milk yogurt sorbet. Or feast your eyes—and stomach—on her black pepper cheesecake, a masterpiece of smooth cheese jolted with black pepper and cut with the soothing sweetness of caramelized pineapple and tart-as-can-be-green apple compote.

9 Park St., Boston, 617-742-9991,