• French culinary school brings expertise to Manila

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    From left: Institut Culinaire Disciples Escoffier CFO Thierry Muller, COO Ben Grenier, The Cravings Group founder and president Susana Guerrero, and CEO Marinela Trinidad enter into partnership

    From left: Institut Culinaire Disciples Escoffier CFO Thierry Muller, COO Ben Grenier, The Cravings Group founder and president Susana Guerrero, and CEO Marinela Trinidad enter into partnership

    French cuisine is considered one of the first established culinary traditions in the world, and as such, it has become the template for contemporary culinary training.

    With the aim of establishing world-class culinary education in the Philippines, the Center for Culinary Arts (CCA, Manila) partnered with the Institut Culinaire Disciples Escoffier (ICDE).

    Together, they will pioneer classic French cuisine training in the country starting early next year at CCA’s new campus in Bonifacio Global City, Taguig. It will be the first partnership of Hong Kong-based ICDE for Southeast Asia.

    Held at the Epicurious in Shangri-La Mall East Wing, the agreement was signed by CCA, Manila President Susana Guerrero, CEO Marinela Trinidad and Chancellor of Education Dr. Veritas Luna; and from ICDE, COO Ben Grenier and CFO Thierry Muller.

    Witnessing the landmark signing were French Ambassador Thierry Mathou to the Philippines; CCA, Manila Program Director Chef Melissa Oreta; and CCA, Manila Culinary Director Chef Sau del Rosario.

    Also at the event, Vincent Leroux, who is the director of ICDE and president of the Disciples Escoffier, conducted a special one-day cooking demonstration, preparing Duck Liver Pan Fried with Cocoa Grue.

    Through the agreement, ICDE will be bringing in three of its chef-instructors and will handle all culinary classes and programs related to French Cuisine, starting with the Disciples Escoffier Diploma in Culinary Arts, a six-month program that could be expanded with shorter courses in French Cuisine for amateurs and professionals. All classes will be conducted at the CCA’s BGC campus, with state-of-the-art classrooms and facilities to accommodate its requirements.

    “With the partnership, we’ll be introducing different techniques and skills sets,” Grenier said. “There are not too many French restaurants in Manila, and I think it needs to be encouraged. If there are more people training in classic French cuisine, then there is a foundation they can build on. Whether it’s Mediterranean or Italian or Western, you can still use the building blocks on classic French cuisine and go anywhere from there.”

    Vincent Leroux, program director of ICDE

    Vincent Leroux, program director of ICDE

    The partnership with ICDE further strengthens CCA’s position as a prominent establishment for culinary education in the country with its progressive curriculum geared towards creating world-class chefs.

    Founded in Hong Kong in 2014 by Robert Fontana, Chairman of Disciples Escoffier Asia, ICDE is affiliated with “Disciples Escoffier International,” a France-based non-profit organization that has more than 25,000 members in 26 countries, counting some of the world’s most respected chefs as members.

    And because the ICDE is accredited by the French Ministry of Education and delivers a government-regulated National Diploma in French Cuisine (the “Certificat de Fin de Formation en Cuisine Francaise), course graduates will be presented with certificates recognized by the hospitality and fine dining industry worldwide.

    CCA, Manila campus is located at 287 Katipunan Avenue, Loyola Heights, Quezon City.

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