The Westin St. Francis Hotel in San Francisco has kicked off the holiday season in style – by unveiling a 12-ft tall Holiday Sugar Castle made of sumptuous ingredients.
The creator of this extraordinary castle is Executive pastry Chef Jean-Francois Houdre. Dubbed King of the Castle, Houdre has worked on perfecting his signature rotating Holiday Sugar Castle and his hard work, which spanned 360 hours, has finally paid off – the 1200 pound castle, which resembles a French chateau, is one of the country’s largest.
Houdre originally began working on this sugar castle in 2005 and his magnificent creation has continued to grow and evolve ever since – bigger and larger with each passing year, and it become a holiday tradition for many families in San Francisco to visit the hotel during the holidays to see this wonder.
The sugar castle features more than 20 grand circular towers, approximately 30 rooms, glowing windows and even a running train. New addition this year is an expansive life-like replica of a medieval French village complete with intricately constructed homes, a quaint church, a bakery and even stores – all with illuminated windows and surrounded by a “magical forest.” A second train filled with elves will encircle this winter wonderland.
So how did Houdre come up with this idea? According to The Westin St. Francis, the inspiration came to Houdre, while he was on one of his trips with his family to Europe, and he was fascinated by the chateaux Mont Saint Michel and La Cite de Carcassonne – one of Europe’s most beautiful and complete examples of a fortified city.
Houdre’s wonderful creation is made of:
70 pounds of gingerbread,
130 pounds of pastillage (powdered sugar, egg whites and gelatine dough),
40 pounds of pulled and bubble sugar,
Royal icing made of 300 pounds of sugar and egg whites,
40 pounds of molasses,
60 pounds of flour, and
100 pounds of assorted Christmas candy!
The Holiday Sugar Castle is one of San Francisco’s most popular tourist attractions during the holiday season.
This fantastic creation will be on display from November 23 to Jan. 3.
Start the slideshow to see this amazing, delectable display!