Cook With Me
Dana Herbert, owner of Desserts by Dana, resides in Bear, Delaware. Chef Herbert lives and breathes in the sweet and artistic world of pastry art, where flavor and color come to life in his wonderful wedding cakes, sugar sculptures, custom cakes, and tasty miniature desserts for all occasions. Dana is an expert sugar artist with a number of nicknames. He’s best known as “The Sugar Daddy” because of his work with pulled and blown sugar, but is also known as Delaware’s “King of Cakes.”
Chef Herbert has garnered a lot of attention for his big win on Cake Boss: The Next Great Baker, a hit show on TLC, which premiered in December 2010. After watching him excel in both design and taste in each episode, he took home the gold (and a new car!) in the finale. All of Delaware’s residents have supported the Sugar Daddy throughout the exciting show’s season. He also was invited to work in Hoboken with Buddy Valastro and can be seen on some of the awesome episodes of Cake Boss.
After Dana’s historic win on Cake Boss: Next Great Baker, the nation has seen Chef in a number of other media outlets nationally and internationally including multiple shows of Deals with Kat Cosley (ABC), and throughout NBC, WHYY, FOX, CN8 and more. Chef Herbert’s features and recipes have been seen in numerous magazines including Essence, Fitness Magazine, Catering Magazine, and the Huffington Post, Chef Magazine, Delaware Today and many more. Dana also graced the cover of Dessert Professional in 2012. Chef Herbert has also been featured on WEtv for Wedding Cake Wars, TLC’s Ultimate Cake Off, and many local television magazine programs.
When it comes to burning in the kitchen Dana is an expert. Dana is trained in both Culinary and Pastry which makes him a double threat in any kitchen. He loves to blend his sweet and savory style together. This caught the eye of James Beard and they asked Dana to be a part of the James Beard Celebrity Chef Tour which has been running for approximately 10 years. Organizers of the tour loved his work so much that they announced that Dana’s course was Top Ten All- Time Desserts on tour. Dana has authored a book called the Sweet and Savory Union as a result of his love for blurring the lines between sweet and savory. Chef also tours the country with Novo Nordisk educating people with Diabetes on how they can make their culinary creations delicious, nutritious, and sensible for a sugar free diet. Dana feels as though the key to living a long life starts with everything in moderation, and balance.
Dana works with a number of celebrities in his line of work and has made cakes for some of the nations’ best athletes and stars including fiancé of Michael Vick, Asante Samuels, Bart Scott, Jimmy Rollins, Joselio Hansen, Jill Biden, Dick Vermeil, Tye Tribbett, and daughters’ wedding of famous jazz musician Najee.
Dana is a 1998 graduate of the University of Delaware (UD) with a Bachelor’s degree in Hotel, Restaurant, and Institutional Management. While in college, Chef Herbert was involved in the National Society of Minorities in Hospitality (NSMH), serving as the chapter president and eventually the National Chairperson for the organization. After graduating from UD, Chef Herbert continued his education at Johnson and Wales University (JWU), where he completed a second Bachelor’s Degree in Culinary Arts and an additional Associates of Arts in Pastry. During his study at JWU he worked for the Four Seasons Boston. After pastry school, Dana worked for Philadelphia Downtown Marriott as the in-house Pastry Chef. During that time, Dana also had the unique opportunity of being the Pastry Chef for the 2006 American Culinary Federation National Convention, and cooking for the Philadelphia Chapter of the Chaine Des Rotisseurs. Currently, Dana is the Chef at the Delaware River and Bay Authority in New Castle and also a member of Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity Inc. (Wilmington Alumni Chapter), the International Cake Exploration Society (ICES), and the American Culinary Federation.
He is married to his wonderful wife Netesha, and welcomed their first child, Siani Rose, in February 2011, and their second child Jasmine in October of 2012.