Five promising cooks have been offered employment at a three Michelin-starred London restaurant after impressing the Executive Head Chef.
The students were hand-picked from EKC Broadstairs College’s catering department to take part in a week-long work placement at the iconic London dining destination Sketch.
After demonstrating their training in the four restaurants and four bars within Sketch’s Mayfair location, Executive Head Chef Frederic Don and Daniel Stucki, Head Chef of the three Michelin-starred Lecture Room & Library restaurant, invited all five to return on a full-time basis.
During their placement, the students honed their abilities by completing services including breakfast and afternoon tea, as well as receiving an invite to participate in the creation of the Lecture Room & Library’s tasting menu.
The students – Otto Neech, Joseph Rowlstone, Megan Marvier, Joe Carlino and Georgia Davis – got to try their hand at cooking and working front-of-house at the world’s most instagrammed restaurant, thus experiencing how world class service is achieved.
Otto said: “My favourite part had to be when I was in the three Michelin starred kitchen: actually seeing the precision that is required and the fluidity with which they work and deliver perfect dishes.
“While I was in that kitchen, we had a top executive from Microsoft dine and it’s cool to think he’s eaten something I’ve prepared.”
As a special treat, at the end of their time at Sketch they all got to try the tasting menu for themselves.
Otto said: “It was just incredible, the attention to detail was crazy and the service was a big part of the experience. The wine pairings were perfect and to have that many courses all working in harmony with each other was amazing.”
It was like a ballet going on around you…
Megan said: “Even the simplest things you can think of were taken to another level, and the waiters knew the menu back to front and really helped you understand what you were eating and how each dish was purposefully designed.”
Joseph, who is also EKC Group’s Student President, said: “Seeing the service was mesmerising – it was like a ballet going on around you. Putting different plates down at set times, everyone has set tasks and it flowed amazingly, almost to the point you didn’t notice it because it was so smooth.
“It was truly the gold standard, in that the waiters were present but not seen or heard unless describing the dishes. They were so attentive, even memorising who on the table had still or sparkling water and refilling it at the perfect time. It was whole other level service and food which none of us have experienced before.
The placements and offers of employment were the result of the hard work and dedication from Broadstairs College’s Professional Industries’ Industry Liaison Officer Natalie Stone.
She said: “We were incredibly lucky to have been given not one but five opportunities for the students, and we’re incredibly proud that they all performed well enough to be offered jobs.
“The students involved told me that it’s like seeing a whole new world and, though it was hard work, it’s inspired them to strive for more in both their studies and future careers. What is amazing is that Sketch has offered more work placements next year, so this is just the beginning of this exciting collaboration with them.”
Megan added: “Natalie and Sketch deserve all the thanks in the world for making this happen. It was a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity and it is going to further my career so much.”
Joseph noted: “Broadstairs College has been vital in giving me the skills needed to approach the placement with confidence, and I’d like to thank Natalie and Sketch for giving us the chance to experience life in such a renowned kitchen.
“To be offered a job on top of that means the absolute world to me and to all of us who went. For Sketch to be kind enough to offer more placements in the future is incredible and will provide such an opportunity to so many budding chefs to come.”
Broadstairs College’s Principal, Emily Johnson, said: “I am incredibly proud to receive such wonderful feedback following our student’s work placement. We constantly strive to offer wider experiences that raise aspirations, and I would like to thank Sketch for affording these learners this opportunity and subsequent employment.
“I look forward to following the careers of these students and I’m excited about the opportunity that awaits them.”