In 2007, a documentary film crew trailed Pfeiffer, co-founder of Chicago's French Pastry School, as he competed in Les Meilleurs Ouvriers de France competition. At stake: the prestigious title of Best Craftsman in France, or M.O.F.
It was the first time cameras were allowed in to the three-day competition, which takes place every three to four years.
Pfeiffer had no problem mentally shutting out the cameras. "Whenever you're competing, you don't think about anything else. You don't even go to the bathroom for 10 hours," he says.
Pfeiffer has no problems multi-tasking. He spoke to me by phone as he blow-torched a sugar sculpture to bring for his appearance tomorrow on "Good Morning America." He also was finishing a chocolate sculpture in the shape of a giant film reel, which will be on display at Friday's Chicago premiere.
Filmmakers Chris Hegedus and DA Pennebaker come to this project having done the documentaries "The War Room" about President Bill Clinton's 1992 presidential campaign, and "Don't Look Back," about singer Bob Dylan's 1965 concert tour of England.
Different topics, same message: "It's about people taking a risk," Hegedus says.
There's another Chicago connection to the project: Flora Lazar of Flora Confections, a friend of the filmmakers from her days living in New York, first suggested Pfeiffer and the M.O.F. competition as a possible film subject. Lazar was studying at the French Pastry School at the time.
How did Pfeiffer fare in the competition? The answer is out there, but let's not ruin it, shall we? See for yourself. "Kings of Pastry" runs through Oct. 7; go to siskelfilmcenter.org for the schedule and tickets. Here's a taste: