We are Wassim and Omar - brothers who have travelled far and wide to inspire and be inspired by the delectable world of food, art, travel and culture. We aspire to enrich the pastry world with creations that are distinctly influenced by our roots and our experiences. Although we have since discovered our own niche in the kitchen, our ever growing appetite for adventure and baking continues to keep us together.
If you ever find yourself in Syria, follow your nose and it will definitely lead you to wonderful places. It is a land blessed with a flair for food that is made with love and inspired by various ancient civilizations, with techniques far advanced than the rest of the world and with an abundance of fresh ingredients.
The craft of Aleppian sweets is one of the most important art forms that have passed down from one generation to the next, like the Zalabia that has been passed down from two families since the age of Al-Ma’moon. Other sweets in the industry is directly attributed to a few families that specialize in the craft like cotton candy (dragon beard candy), natif, tahini halva, baklava, and karabeej halab (Aleppo cookies), and of course, the Arabic candies: almond milk, Turkish delight (raha), marzipan, chocolates, jams, guk-malban or (cevizli sucuk), pestil and other desserts.
We are quite literally ‘buns in the oven’ as we’ve grown up with one foot always through the door. However, growing up in a culinary-rich country, we didn’t realize how the food from our kitchens are way beyond what the world is just starting to discover. When we started to get our hands dirty and actually learn to cook and bake, we had even greater respect and awe for Syrian, especially Aleppian cuisine.
Our cherished childhood memories are waking up to the energizing scent of something baking in the kitchen and going home to a sumptuous feast at the end of a long day. These memories are just a few of the ones that encouraged us to push boundaries, criticize everything and discover things that will only continue to evoke our curiosity so we can elevate these experiences and share them with the world.
We read. We studied. We traveled.
This is our story - the story of how Orfali Brothers came to be.
TWO PASSIONS. ONE GOAL.
Until now, we are continuously shaping our craft as chefs, inspired by the people we’ve met and the places we’ve been around the world. We have developed a strong inclination to French pastry and are in the path of creating a balance between its masterful techniques and the rich flavors and ingredients of our Aleppian roots.
We are 3 brothers that have combined our 2 passions of cooking and baking to fulfill our ultimate goal. The eldest of our group (sometimes a leader, sometimes a dictator) - Mohammad - is a wide-eyed and passionate chef who is always striving for innovation and perfection in everything he does. He provided us with an abundance of direction and more importantly, inspiration.
We are the younger (and maybe more awesome) of the three - Wassim and Omar. Being born into a family of chefs, we were always experimenting with different taste, flavors and textures. We would often fail, but in the end, we always learned. Through continuous learning and even constant bickering, we each developed our own styles.
We did not have it easy. We started working inside kitchens on menial jobs. Our unbridled curiosity and hunger to learn kept us going until we worked our way up and found ourselves being the masters of our craft. Our dedication to the art of Pastry is as exact as our measurements are for every pastry and every dessert we put our hands on. Each day is a new day to discover something new. Just because we are called chefs doesn’t mean we’ve reached the end. We are just beginning.
In our journey, one of our main goals is to reestablish and place Aleppian cuisine back on the gastronomy map like it was in the past. Aleppian cuisine was one of the founding fathers of culinary arts in Middle Eastern Cuisine, and it inspired neighboring countries around it. It not only inspired other countries in terms of its techniques in molecular gastronomy, but also the sustainability and the art that came with crafting harmony between flavors and aromas. This continuously shapes how food is experienced and enjoyed throughout the world. We want to inspire people to cherish their roots, just as we did ours. We want to take people on a journey around the world through every dessert we love.
We also aim to inspire professionals and food enthusiasts to recreate pastries with an abundance of layers, imaginative textures and explosions of flavors in every bite. Through pastry and baking courses, we want to share our philosophy, our vision, our passion and our beautiful memories that we have learned throughout our journey and help others discover and develop their own.
We will be re-igniting the way people see, understand and taste dessert by enriching their innate talents and unlock their creativity. Through this, we are providing the best possible contribution we can give to future generations.
We want our baking and our pastries, to invoke a sense of creativity, pride, and joy at the many possibilities that can be born from our kitchen.
Food is our life. Sharing it with the world is our mission.