Abby Searles has been promoted to chef de cuisine at Apis, which also announced today its new pastry chef, Lauren McCann, who moves to Austin from New York City. (Apis Restaurant & Apiary)

Yes, in a perfect world, we wouldn’t point out that two prominent chef roles at Apis were just filled by women, but in an industry that last year was reportedly dominated by men at a four-to-one rate, it is encouraging to hear of the news from the fine dining restaurant in Spicewood.

The restaurant hired University of Texas graduate Lauren McCann, who served as chef de partie at Thomas Keller’s Per Se in New York City, to serve as pastry chef. The Texas native is a 2013 graduate of the pastry arts program at L’Academie de Cuisine. In addition to the new hire, Apis has promoted Abby Searles to the position of chef de cuisine. The Houston native, who has worked in New York City for chefs like Larry Forgione, Marc Forgione and Anita Lo, was promoted from the position of sous chef.

Searles replaces Adam Brick, a fellow Texan and veteran of New York City kitchens, who is turning his attention to Apis’ Pizzeria Sorellina, an Italian restaurant that will open soon in a building on the Apis campus in Spicewood. Apis will give a taste of what’s to come at Pizzeria Sorellina when it hosts a pop-up Monday night at Bufalina in East Austin. Get details here.