January 2016| Newsletter
In This Edition:
Happy New Year!
The Stratford Chefs School is abuzz with upcoming guest chefs and events.
We look forward to having you join us for an exceptionally busy semester.
Gabrielle Hamilton Arrives January 11
Renowned JHGWIR will be in our classroom and kitchen
Dinner & Lunch Labs Resume January 12
Reservations are already filling up
26th Annual Gala Fundraiser and Auction
Tickets are on sale now
Canadian Guest Chef Series
A sneak peak of what's in store
International Chef in Residence
Gino Minacapilli will bring a taste of Piedmont to Stratford
Level 1 student Jaclyn Marsh reveals how she feels after completing first semester
Our Annual Gala Fundraiser is Quickly Approaching
The Stratford Chefs School 26th Annual Gala Dinner and Auction at George Restaurant in Toronto, brings together food lovers and school supporters for an evening of superb dinning.
Our students are front and centre at the Gala, behind the scenes preparing the meal, out front serving our patrons in style, and running the Gala Auction throughout the evening.
Alumnus and Chef Instructor Ryan O'Donnell will be at the helm of the kitchen and has developed this year’s menu. O'Donnell, Executive Chef of Mercer Hall in Stratford, is known for his innovative dishes and pride in Perth County products.
Dinner is a four-course meal and although not vegetarian it will showcase the versatility of the humble vegetable. Celebrating the best produce, O’Donnell’s menu will play with textures, colours and flavours, making the vegetable the star of the plate.
Our wine instructor and chefs carefully select wine pairing. Additional beverage partners include The Vine Agency and revel caffè.
Chris Blake, renowned auctioneer will be back holding the gavel. An extensive catalogue of curated auction packages includes distinctive gifts, one-of-a kind experiences, dinners and events. Silent and live auction items are priced for every budget and will be sold throughout the evening.
As a Non-profit educational institution, the Stratford Chefs School relies on fund-raising efforts like the Gala to keep tuition affordable and maintain excellence of training. The Gala accounts for 40% of fund-raised revenue every year.
We thank our returning supporters both individual and corporate who continue to join us for this event— and look forward to having new guests join the Stratford Chefs School community.
Tickets are $500 per person ($300 tax receipt issued) and alumni pricing is available. Tickets can be purchased online here or by calling the school.
Dinner Labs Resume
January 2016 | International Inspirations Series
Experience international chefs' renowned styles, interpreted by our student chefs
$55 per person, wine pairings included
Dinners from Tuesday to Saturday | Seatings start at 6:30pm
Location | The Prune, 151 Albert Street
Tuesday January 12 | waitlist only
Inspired by Gordon Ramsay
Butternut Squash Velouté with Sautéed Cèpes, Scallops, Parmesan Crisp, and Mushroom-White Truffle Tortellini
Seared Loin of Tuna with Poached Veal Fillet and Caper Dressing
Roast Saddle and Leg of Rabbit, Cauliflower, Haricot Blanc and Young Lettuce
Apple Parfait with Honeycomb, Bitter Chocolate and Champagne Foam
Wednesday January 13
Inspired by Atul Kochhar
Goan Fish Croquettes with Cucumber Salad and Tomato Chutney
Peppered Chicken Curry
Almond Lamb Curry
Turnips with Ginger and Nigella Seeds
Rich Cashew Nut Ice Cream with Roasted Fruit
Thursday January 14
Inspired by Frank Pabst
Kusshi Oysters with Pickled Vegetables, Cucumber Jelly and Horseradish Foam
Sesame-Crusted Pacific Scallops with Japanese Eggplant
Smoked Black Cod with Beluga Lentils and Beet Straw
Hazelnut Financier with Vanilla Poached Pears
Friday January 15 | waitlist only
Featured JHGWIR Gabrielle Hamilton $85+HST
Braised Octopus with Potatoes
Mustard Greens Salad
Grilled Pigeon on Seeded Toast with Warm Parsley Vinaigrette
Olive Oil Cake with Candied Orange
Saturday January 16
Inspired by: Anne Desjardins
Maple Marinated Trout with Fennel Juice Vinaigrette
Medallions of Fresh Duck Foie Gras with Mead Jelly and Brioche
Arctic Char with Soft Potato Purée and Olive Oil Sauce
Hazelnut Cake with Caramelized Apples and Maple Syrup
519.271.1414 orwebsite for details
Lunches on Friday and Saturday|Seatings start at 11:30
Location| Rene's Bistro, 20 Wellington St.
Enjoy inspired three course menus conceived and created by Level 2 Student Chefs
$30 per person
Friday January 15 | Student Chef Kari Bauman
Bread and Butter
Not Your Average Sushi
Something Like Soup
Saturday January 16 | Student Chef Amanda Van Brenk
Bacon sourdough with beef dip
Egg's nest salad
Beef with potato purée, jus foam, tarragon glass and pearl onions
Hot chocolate, coffee, and tea
Wines available by the glass or $5 corkage
Location | Rene's Bistro, 20 Wellington St
Gabrielle Hamilton Arrives
You have probably heard it too many times by now, but we are very excited about the arrival of our Joseph Hoare Gastronomic Writer in Residence, Gabrielle Hamilton.
Chef Hamilton is the chef-owner of Prune restaurant in New York's East Village and was named Best Chef NYC by the James Beard Foundation in 2011.
Launching her Canadian visit on January 11th 2016, Chef Hamilton will be in conversation with fellow JHGWIR and notable author Ian Brown at the Toronto Public Library Appel Salon Series. This event will be held at the Appel Salon in the Toronto Reference Library. Tickets are free but seats must be reserved here.
While in residence at the Stratford Chefs School, Chef Hamilton will work alongside students for three dinners:
Friday January 15 | waitlist only
Thursday January 21|
Saturday January 23 | waitlist only
These exclusive four-course dinners, with wine pairings, are priced at $85.00 plus HST. Reserve your seat by calling the school or visiting our website.
Sunday January 17 | waitlist only
Alumni, students and Richmond Station co-owners, Carl Heinrich and Ryan Donovan will be collaborating with Chef Hamilton at Richmond Station. Serving a four-course meal with wine pairings from Southbrook Vineyards, this sold out event is sure to be a winner. Learn more here.
Canadian Guest Chefs Series
Some of Canada's most noted chefs, many of whom are alumni, share their skills and experience with our students while executing an outstanding meal for our diners
Confirmed Chefs include: Ryan Crawford, Arron Carley, Bryan Steele, Sean Collins, Yva Santini, Neil Baxter and Carl Heinrich... to name a few.
Stay tuned for the complete list, dates and menus.
International Chef in Residence Gino Minacapilli arrives in February
Gino was born Domodossola in northern Italy and grew up in his family-owned restaurant helping out in the kitchen from a very early age. He literally learned traditional Piedmont cuisine on his Grandmother’s knee!
Already sure what his chosen profession would be, Gino earned a Hotel Management diploma by the age of 19. He gained a series of internships in internationally renowned resorts in Italy and, at the age of 24, he was appointed chef and tutor at ICHM (International College of Hotel Management) in Crans Montana, Switzerland.
In 1988, Gino moved to Agliano Terme in the Monferrato, a small spa town in the heart of the Barolo, Barbaresco and truffle-producing area of Piedmont. Agliano Terme was to become his base for the next 25 years.
During his time at the boutique hotel and restaurant Fons Salutis, where he rose to the rank of head chef, he decided to specialize in regional cuisine and wine selection. Gino is now a private chef and consultant.
Gino's menus are posted online here and from what we can make out (written in Italian, of course!) they will be traditional and delicious. Piedmont is known for it's rich dishes and picturesque green hillsides, but the region has recently been cited as Italy's new food capital.
We look forward to seeing Chef Gino's menu come to life. These dinners will sell out. Make reservations while you can.
Level 1 Student Jaclyn Marsh reveals how she feels after completing first semester
Written by Jaclyn Marsh.
With Semester 1 successfully in the books, I am feeling, admittedly, completely exhausted.
Having said that, I also feel exhilarated and utterly amazed at how much I have learned in eight short weeks... Ten if you include the two week prep course.
I am definitely proud of myself for pushing through, keeping organized, and maintaining good grades.
I started with close to zero knowledge and skills, save for what had been self-taught and researched. And yet, I already had the confidence (gained without even really realizing it) to cook continuously for my family for a week over the Christmas holidays.
I cannot exactly pinpoint my favourite thing learned thus far, but in a broad sense I can say that I enjoy knowing how simple certain things can actually be.
Things that seemed too daunting to even attempt (sauce preparation, braising, deep-frying, making confit, butchering whole animals, baking bread from scratch to name a few...) are now easily accomplished!
If I had to highlight one thing I have really enjoyed, even though I find it challenging, it would be making bread and pastries. There is something about the accuracy, science, and meditative kneading that is just so incredibly appealing to me.
My greatest challenge was adapting to the long days, the full, busy schedule, and staying organized enough to complete the necessary readings, assignments and test and exam preparations.
Since I came to the School without any background in restaurants, I challenged myself to learn very quickly. For me pretty much every technique was new - even if I had been cooking with certain methods, I hadn't known what they were called or why they worked. Something that is very beneficial with this course is the fact that we learn the science behind the cooking: the "why", and not just the "how". It allows various techniques to be applied to just about any food....and I guess that is where the creativity can begin.
Next semester, I am looking forward to Gabrielle Hamilton's visit to the school and her instruction in class, as well as the arrivals of the other guest chefs, such as Chef Ryan Crawford from Backhouse in Niagara.
As for my summer work placement, I am leaning towards a local restaurant, but nothing has been solidified as of yet....so we'll see!
Thank you for sharing Jaclyn! We look forward to watching your journey continue.
We are Now Accepting Applications for 2016
Are you passionate about a career in the Culinary Arts? Or do you know someone who is looking for the perfect school to hone their skills?
The Stratford Chefs School is now accepting applications for Fall 2016.
Join us to see what it is like before committing.
Meet with the School's Recruitment and Admissions Officer, Robert Friesen. Ask questions about the program, financial aid and life in Stratford.
Train in real restaurant kitchens and dining rooms
Learn some basic practical culinary terms and techniques
Watch our talented chef instructors demonstrate knife skills and food preparations
Take home examples of the kinds of recipes you would learn as a student
Book your personal visit here or contact our recruitment officer Bob Friesen for more details.
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org or
THANK YOU TO OUR 2015|2016 SUPPORTERS
BOARD OF DIRECTORS
Ryan Donovan, Nigel Howard, Timothy J. Leonard, Dr. Dennis Nuhn
Dan Donovan, Carl Heinrich, Eleanor Kane, Shelley Windsor, John Wolfe
The Compudoc and Switch Wifi
Cave Spring Cellars, Hidden Bench, Le Sommelier, Malivoire, Rosewood Estates, The Vine Agency
EXECUTIVE CHEF $10,000+
BMO Financial Group
ESCOFFIER DONORS SOUS CHEF $2,500+
Sarah & Jason Bandey
CHEF DE PARTIE $1,000+
Hans & Lydia Habegger
Judith Horner & Hammond Bentall
Vicki & Max Lass
Vicki & Tim Pritchard
Rheo Thompson Candies Ltd
Susan & David Tamblyn
GASTRONOMIC WRITER IN RESIDENCE DONORS
Lighthouse Lemonade Inc.
Sandra & Jim Pitblado
SUPPORT A STUDENT CHEF DONORS
BMO Financial Group
Lynda & David Bowen
Dr. Robert Close
Sandra Collier & Thomas Verny
Gayle & Larry Folliott
Ann & John Lang
Connie & James MacDougall
Ross & Fran McElroy
Chris E. Reed
Gordon & Elaine Steed
Stratford Tourism Alliance
The Hillbrook Group
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Stratford Chefs School
The Stratford Chefs School is a world renowned, not-for-profit educational institution. It is now entering its fourth decade training young Canadian chefs through a unique, industry-driven program. Stratford Chefs School is supported by Service Canada and the Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities.
Charitable No. 119199958 RR0001