What I Learned in Culinary School

Five of our fantastic graduates contribute their thoughts on what they learned in culinary school in The Chef’s Connection:

Bobby Flay
“Every day I cook in my restaurants, I’m using techniques that I learned in school. Every day. And I always will for the rest of my life.”

Wylie Dufresne, Chef/Owner at Alder and wd~50 in NYC
“All of my research and development is grounded in the skills I learned at ICC. They taught me how to apply my creativity.”

Bao Bao (Suchanan Aksornnan), Owner/Chef at Baoburg
“I went to the French Culinary institute. What I learned from culinary school was everything. You learn from the base. That is why I am not afraid to do fusion. Because I’ve learned from the root. To learn at culinary school is to cook properly. You have to know the rules before you break the rules.”

Melissa Muller Daka, Chef/Owner of Pastai and Bar Eolo in NYC
“ICC focused me. I learned a lot about time management which prepared me for not just the kitchen, but life. Knowing mise en place, technique, knowing what to do when. Every stop of the way changed me as a person, not just a cook. I opened my first restaurant at 22. It was tough, but I was prepared.”

Jonathan Borowitz, Chef/Owner of Café 48 in Tel Aviv
“I really owe a great deal to the school for forming within me the right state of mind to be able to understand and grasp how things are done. The focus on the WAY and METHOD, not just on the end result, are fundamental not only to cooking, but for other things as well. People always tend to say cooking schools are useless—find a job and you’ll learn how to cook. That is totally wrong.”

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