Photos and story by Sarah Berjan
City College of San Francisco’s Culinary Arts and Hospitality Studies hosted a special tasting on Nov. 1 in advance of their 26th annual Harvest Buffet at the college’s student-run restaurant, Educated Plate, at the Downtown Center located on 4th and Mission Streets.
The special tasting was hosted by City College in partnership with SF Travel Association and Golden Gate Restaurant Association welcoming guests in previewing the harvest buffet menu. According to the Downtown Center Dean, Dr. Geisce Ly, the new menu hosts approximately 30 new savory options and 50 pastry options.
“I am amazed and impressed by watching them grow from their first day [of the culinary program] to the 11th week. I’m almost in tears,” said Rea Dellimore, chef instructor of the downtown campus.
During the tasting event, students Rudy Rogers and Aimee Mendoza presented savory sampling of mushroom conserva with goat cheese canape and lion king sushi squares. A pastry sampling of verrine of passion fruit mousseline, and verrine of coconut lychee pearls was presented by students Maria Hadijitheocharous and Jessica De Moraes.
“The program is special because we are creating beauty and joy,” City College Chancellor Mark Rocha said. “This is very social and I am so grateful to continue this. It is important.”
“Our students come from all walks of life but share one thing in common: their passion for food,” said Tannis Reinhertz, chair of the Culinary Arts and Hospitality Studies program.
“San Francisco is the food capital of the world,” said Cassandra Costello, SVP of Public Policy and Executive Programs at the San Francisco Travel Association said. “With institutions like City College of San Francisco and their top notch culinary and hospitality program, it is no wonder that the Bay Area is home to more three-star Michelin restaurants than New York City.”
There are a number of successful chefs that graduated from the City College’s Culinary program, including Belinda Leong, owner of B. Patisseirie and the James Beard Award winner for Outstanding Baker.
“The program teaches technical skills that allows students to gain experience before entering the real world. This programs sees culinary as a potential pathway into the industry,” Chhavi Sahni of the Golden Gate Restaurant Association advisory board. “And as you can imagine, with a free tuition culinary program, we are creating many opportunities in the food industry for people who value education.”
“The hospitality industry offers diverse opportunities throughout the world,” according to the Culinary and Hospitality studies department. “Whether your interests are in cooking, service, management, lodging, institutions, chains or independents, City College of San Francisco’s Culinary Arts and Hospitality Studies department can open doors for you.”