Four of the nation's best pastry chefs have been chosen to compete in the Coupe du Monde de la Patisserie (World Pastry Cup) taking place Jan. 23 and 24, 2011 in Lyon, France.

The newly selected members of Team USA 2011 accept their award.

Team USA is made up of captain Jean-Francois Suteau, executive pastry chef of the Beverly Hills Hotel; Frania Mendivil, executive pastry chef of The Beverly Hilton; Bill Foltz, executive pastry chef of L'Auberge de Lac Casino Resort in Lake Charles, La.; and alternate Yoni Morales, executive pastry chef of Ark at the New York-New York Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas.

Bill Foltz works on his centerpiece creation.

To make the team, competing chefs had eight hours to prepare combinations of plated desserts, chocolate (or sugar) centerpieces, ice carvings and chocolate entremets. Team USA members were reviewed by a panel of judges including Coupe du Monde founder, master pastry chef Gabriel Paillasson, Ewald Notter, Stéphane Tréand and Kerry Vincent.

"It feels amazing to be selected as captain of the USA team for a competition," said Suteau in a statement. "I know we have a lot of work ahead of us. It's an awesome challenge and I'm ready for it."

Jean Francois Suteau pipes Valrhona chocolate into molds.

The biennial Coupe du Monde is a two-day competition with teams from more than 20 nations vying for a spot in the top three to which medals are awarded.