If you’re looking to get your start in the exciting world of professional cooking, you can’t do better than CASA San Francisco culinary school. The city by the bay boasts more than 300 Michelin-starred restaurants and more eateries and bars per capita than any other city in the U.S., making it a favorite destination for foodies from all over the world.
CASA. The apprenticeship model culinary school.
Local sourcing and farm-to-table is big here. In fact, this city boasts the oldest Slow Food chapter in the nation. Access to fresh, seasonal produce and a thriving food culture draws chefs from around the world to set up shop here and take part in the eclectic culinary scene that’s been a trendsetter for close to two hundred years, bringing us Asian fusion, heirloom tomatoes and even the first Italian restaurant in the nation! Fior d’Italia located on Telegraph Hill is still a popular destination for homemade pasta, scallopini, and an excellent osso buco. Among the city’s chefs is, Nostra’s Chef Alexander Alioto, a fourth-generation chef whose quest to learn authentic Italian culinary techniques took him to Sicily where he woke at 3 am each morning to pick fish for the evening’s service. From there he went on to learn foraging and butchering, before moving north to Bologna which led to him working at a number of Michelin-starred restaurants throughout Italy, Germany, and ultimately back in the United States at Thomas Keller’s The French Laundry in Napa Valley. Fun, simplicity, and deliciousness are at the forefront of Chef Alioto’s culinary preoccupations. Among them are multiple homemade pastas including raviolo al uovo (egg-filled raviolo) and sous vide crispy pork belly huckleberry with huckleberry pork demi-glaze. The motivating principle behind Chef Nancy Oakes restaurant Boulevard is as simple as questing for what is delicious. Together with Chef de Cuisine, Dana Younkin, Oakes makes striving for excellence de rigueur with dishes like quail buttermilk waffle with granola butter, red flannel jam & crispy fried quail legs and the Kurobuta pork chop with Seville orange marmalade butter, shaved hazelnuts, and chorizo with Christmas lima & Corona shell beans. Riding the cutting edge of creatively complex, seasonal cuisine is Chef James Syhabout of Commis, located in North Oakland. Spare surroundings place the emphasis on an ever-evolving selection of small plates designed to arouse one’s gustatory sensations. Open-mindedness, playfulness, and respect for the provenance of cuisine align in Chef Syhabout’s culinary philosophy. And although he’s driven to the complex, the 30-something-year-old chef has not forgotten the joy of simplicity and hidden precision in a well-made dish of fried eggs over rice. At Commis, the eight-course pairing menu may include dishes like slow-poached egg yolk with smoked dates or alliums and malt true cod with roasted hen juices, emulsified with young garlic and almond panade. Menu by menu, James Syhabout is proving that conceptual cuisine can and should stir the soul. Head about an hour north of central San Francisco to Manresa, located in Los Gatos, CA. Here, Chef David Kinch and crew work to produce refined dishes sourced from organic and biodynamic produce and products from Love Apple Farms. Reservations are booked months in advance for the nightly-changing tasting menu which offers the season’s most vibrant creations composed in dishes such as “winter tidal pool” hamachi, uni, monkfish liver, and oyster and roast duck with spiced orange confit, yam, pavé de chèvre, and consommé. Want to launch your career as a chef from inside the real world of professional cooking as opposed to outside of it? If you have the dedication, passion, and determination it takes to learn on the frontlines, definitely look into a culinary apprenticeship with CASA. Don’t spend years and tens, if not, hundreds of thousands of dollars for schooling without researching the clearer, more direct approach to getting skills, experience, and the connections that lead to great careers in food. Whether you want to start on your path towards being a top chef, learn what it takes to be a pastry chef, start your own culinary business or catering company, or work in other facets of the culinary arts, we can help connect you with the chefs and seasoned professionals who can help you get your start in the thriving, eclectic food scene that is San Francisco. CASA SCHOOLS Chef Apprentice School of the Arts 1 Market Street Spear Tower – Suite 3600 Room 1113 San Francisco, CA 94105 (628) 222-7402