Monday, April 18, 2022

Classes with the Culinary Institute of America in Napa, CA and Wheat Foods Council

So...I finally got to go to the CIA. Tim O'Conner, the President of Wheat Foods Council
invited me to attend this remarkable event in Napa last week! It was by and far one of the most amazing experiences yet! There were about 50 chefs there from all over the country that they considered the "most influential in wheat foods." To be honest, I was humbled beyond words to be invited, but also thrilled! The facility was gorgeous, and the instructors were world-class. 

In this elite invitation-only event, I was asked to attend the workshop at the CIA COPIA campus with Chefs Victor Gielisse and Chef Lisa Brefere, Consulting Partners of The Culinary Institute of America, Consulting Group. We explored the opportunity of differentiating in a competitive foodservice and hospitality market, driven by the challenges for Chefs in creating and implementing high-performing culinary teams. First, I explored the options that Chefs face and must understand in their business to determine what adds value. Then, learned at what stage to initiate another point of menu differentiation to stay ahead of the competition. New and natural value creation for organizations and teams were also highlighted.

Key outcomes from this two-day hands-on culinary session included:

  • Understanding and improving upon culinary repertoires by exploring creative uses of wheat foods within the global flavor palette
  • Analyzing the importance of plant-based approaches to create delicious culinary dishes with cultural appeal
  • Explore the principles of menu concepts and the impact on food and ingredient use
  • Continue to approach a diversity of menu strategies by leveraging globally inspired culinary strategies.
  • Lead with menu strategies around flavor development

I look forward to continuing my work with Wheat Foods Council and building on this friendship. I've learned so much from my relationships with wheat farmers across the country and seeing the change that is taking place in the world of food because of the hard work that state wheat councils are doing together nationally under the direction of the Wheat Foods Council is impressive.  

Always My Very Best,
Your Friend Chef Tess

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