We are the only school in South Africa offering three diplomas in one comprehensive year, as we believe this all-inclusive foundation in culinary training is true to the industry. Our strength is in hands-on practical training and our students spend a large part of every day in the kitchen. Exposed to all aspects of the food industry, they will learn their own strengths and areas they can specialise in.
Steady hours over weekends ensure students are ready for industry, and our students are very much in demand, both locally and internationally. By way of example, 12 out of 18 second-year students in 2015 applied to an internship programme with the Ritz Carlton Hotel Group in the USA in 2016, and ALL were accepted. In 2016, 17 out of 24 students accepted overseas internships.
This is a fantastic achievement and a great start to their careers, with international experience. There is a maximum enrolment of just 36 students per year, ensuring small classes of 12 students each with personalised attention and a chance to thrive as individuals and members of a culinary team.
On completing the course students will achieve three internationally recognised City & Guilds Diplomas:
Essential cookery skills and foundation principles in the industry.
Practical applications including knife skills, cooking methods and a range of styles and ingredients
Storage and care of materials and equipment
Kitchen management including budgeting, planning and basic business principals
Basic French and culinary terminology
Introducing the kitchen brigade
The art of seasoning
History of cooking
Mise En Place
Skills required for a pastry chef, as well as baking and finishing a range of hot and cold desserts.
Scones, doughnuts and similar products
Creams and fillings
Hot and cold sauces
Doughs and bread
Gelatine set desserts
Cakes and sponges
Skills required to manage a restaurant or similar food establishment. It forms a critical part of understanding the business environment as a chef, and the integration of the front of house and kitchen teams, as well as the role of the customer in the success of the food business.
Students learn customer service and are introduced to the range of beverages available to customers, including hot drinks, beers, spirits and wines. Students learn about how they are produced and how the flavours impact foods they are served with. This is an introduction to wine pairing and explores the newer trends in coffee and beer pairing.
Students work on a rotation in our on-site deli and restaurant to acquire the practical skills necessary to achieve this diploma. In our experience, this is a tremendous boost to confidence for all students, and encourages entrepreneurship.
The course starts in late January each year and runs until the middle of December. Students attend school from 7:45 am to 4:00 pm from Tuesday to Sunday and will spend a week learning each syllabus in rotation.
We are fortunate to have both a fine dining restaurant and our own commercial deli on campus, and these provide a “real-life” training ground for students to cook to exacting customer standards. To gain further practical experience and prepare the students for working in Industry, students may be required to do function work with external caterers and organize small commercial ventures. This type of work experience is invaluable in preparing the students for the commercial world.