Eat at a Culinary School

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Herb Stuffed Chicken

I don’t think I’m going to have any room for dinner tonight. Not after the amazing three-course lunch that I just enjoyed at our local culinary school. It’s such a fantastic deal. For $11 a person, you get an appetizer or salad, an entree, a dessert and a drink. And there’s no tip to pay.

Where else could you enjoy a gourmet meal at that price?


Everything is prepared by culinary students, which is really a fun thing.

Some culinary schools have on-site restaurants that are run by the students. Other schools host special lunches or dinners that you have to sign up for in advance. Our local university is currently running a new lunch series that we’ve been attending. The first lunch was served family style. This week’s lunch was served a la carte.

Each time a different student serves as the executive chef.


Here’s what was on today’s menu. And here’s the tastiness that I got to eat …

Watermelon and Cherry Salad

For my first course, I had a watermelon and cherry salad with a fresh mint dressing.

Sage-Brined Pork Loin

For my second course, I had a sage-brined Berkshire pork loin with potato croquette and brussels sprouts in pecan butter. So good!

Freeform Apple Pie

And for the third course, I had freeform apple pie with vanilla bean ice cream and caramel sauce. It sort of tasted like a cross between an apple pie and Mexican ice cream. Really tasty.

If this appeals to your inner foodie, there’s probably a similar program that you can take advantage of near you. Check with local culinary schools, and any university, community college or high school that has a culinary program. Our local university sends out a catalog of non-credit courses each quarter; that’s where I found out about the lunch series that we signed up for.

Or just do a quick web search for “eat at a culinary school.” You’re sure to turn up lists of options. This would be a really fun thing to build into a vacation, especially if you’ll be heading to a town with one of the big-name culinary schools.

Have you ever eaten at a culinary school? I’d love to hear about your experience.

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