CATERING students are to get their teeth stuck into a professional function thanks to the support of two local top chefs.
NVQ Level 3 professional cookery students will stage Food@TheGlasshouse at Darlington College on Thursday (March 1).
The event follows a series of master classes in college by brothers Jacob and Nathan Pattison who run Food@Vesuvio, the latest dining experience to hit Darlington.
Jacob is a former Darlington College student while Nathan has enjoyed a successful career change from the building industry to catering where he worked at the five star Rockliffe Hall Hotel.
The brothers have launched a successful business providing bespoke dining at the independent wine shop and wine bar Vesuvio, in Houndgate, Darlington.
But on Thursday their operations will switch to Darlington College’s Glasshouse restaurant where regulars will be able to enjoy a four course meal designed, prepared and cooked by the chefs with the help of students.
The menu includes starters of rabbit ballotine with peas and asparagus, mackerel and cheese soufflé. Main courses feature sea bass, duck, steak, lamb belly shepherd’s pie or butternut squash chilli risotto. Desserts range from sticky toffee pudding to chocolate ganache and vanilla panna cotta.
Nathan said: “We had been talking to one of the college staff in the restaurant and thought it would be a great idea to link up. Changing from building to catering was a big change for me but certainly one of the best decisions of my life.
“The students have been great to work with and I’m sure will all be successful chefs one day. We decided on rabbit because it is really on-trend and everyone loves it at the moment.”
Student Harold Cutting, 18, of Darlington, said: “It has been really enjoyable to get some real-world experience and it has been great working with the chefs and learning something new.”
Tutor Dawn Cobb Neate added: “It has been an incredible experience for our Level 3s and also our Level 2 pastry group. It is brilliant for the students to learn what it is like to work in a professional kitchen. It has felt real working with professional chefs which has exposed them to a host of new and different techniques.
“We are also hoping to join together to offer the students more work experience and it’s been a great way to promote the restaurant and our catering courses. Students have really listened to the chefs’ advice, particularly when one is an ex-student who has been able to give them an insight into the best way forward in the industry.”
Anyone wanting to book a table for the £22 per head meal should phone (01325) 503030. For more information on opportunities at Darlington College visit www.darlington.ac.uk.