Culinary School Restaurants on the Rise

Not everyone is aware of the treasures that are culinary school restaurants – comparable in service and food quality to regular high-end restaurants, the difference is in the price at these affordable dining establishments! It’s the evolution of the culinary arts ‘campus’, moving students into a more practical space where they can learn on their feet.

Promising young chefs can really benefit from the ‘in-house’ experience involved in delivering service excellence to actual restaurant customers, engaging in detailed prep work under deadline, long hours, and mastering good plate aesthetics with people watching and waiting on the other end…

The new culinary arts campus

Most culinary academies offer hands-on training in restaurants and hotels, and this is a vital part of growing and evolving as a chef. The focus tends to be on gourmet cuisine. Budding chefs can expect to work on delicious entrées, exotic fish, artistic dessert decoration, and a wine list almost as long as, if not longer than, the menu itself!

This real-world experience is a huge bonus on a student’s resumé because working with a team in the kitchen and learning the fast pace of service in a ‘real’ restaurant is knowledge that can’t be bought. What sets the calibre of a culinary school restaurant is these students working to push the envelope in order to achieve good grades, and also to progress onto well-paid jobs in reputable restaurants after they complete their studies.

Hands-on practical training

Many culinary arts programmes have a restaurant or kitchen affiliated with the programme.  This is preparation for their careers as professional chefs or restaurateurs. Culinary school restaurants offer students experience in all facets of restaurant service – from front of house to head chef.

It’s a testing ground that can launch a student’s career in the desired direction. And with effort levels pitched at maximum, the end product is a great experience for customers!

Customers can enjoy top-notch treatment and gourmet fine dining at a much-reduced price, and because many well-known chefs come out of culinary schools and this kind of practical training, patrons get the chance to hobnob with future celebrity chefs before they become big brand names.

Culinary school restaurants kick-starting careers

Not only is this kind of practical experience great for honing a student’s cookery skills, but is also a great opportunity to showcase their culinary talent, innovation, and versatility in the kitchen. Despite the fast pace and increased pressure, students are still amongst their peers and under instruction, so the atmosphere is a less stressful gateway to the working world.

Chef training has been growing in popularity lately, and actually equips students for a variety of careers, both within the hotel and restaurant industry, and further afield within hospitality. In line with this, The International Hotel School recently launched the Christina Martin Culinary Arts Studio at Plettenberg Bay.

The culinary school career path to professional chef

The Christina Martin Culinary Arts programme is actually the only programme in South Africa to offers the CTH Culinary Arts Qualification, which was designed in partnership with Gordon Ramsay’s Tante Marie Culinary Academy for those with ambitions to become a professional chef.

The Studio accommodates 24 up-and-coming chefs on  a beautiful farm with a vineyard on the property – so winemaking and viticulture (the study of grapes) is obviously included in the programme! A mix of theory, practical experience, and hands-on training, the Christina Martin Culinary Arts Studio at Plettenberg Bay is the ideal training ground for aspiring foodies and restaurateurs!