Abbie Spencer from Morecambe and Rebecca Atkinson from Heysham were part of the group from the English Lakes Hotels Resorts & Venues Culinary Academy which took control of Kendal College’s restaurant to get ‘real-time’ experience of the pressures, challenges and successes that come with managing and preparing a venue’s food and drink orders.The food service and hospitality challenge is part of the group’s overall training with the academy, which includes a fully accredited apprenticeship programme to learn the trade of a commis chef.Working as a team, the students provided 44 diners with a three course menu with different options.
Starters included Frank Benson’s Morecambe Bay Shrimps with brioche, lemon, dill and cucumber, whilst the mains featured roast rack of herb crusted Cumbrian lamb with a range of tasty trimmings, as well as monkfish loin wrapped in Parma ham.Desserts included a lemon and thyme crème Brulee with butter shortbread and steeped raspberries or a passion fruit, mango, oat and honey crumble.Head chef at the English Lakes Hotels Resorts & Venues Culinary Academy Daniel Winstanley said: “The restaurant takeover day is one of the biggest challenges we set the students. It’s in real time and they take full responsibility from customer order to clearing the plates. Two things really stood out: their collective ability to work under pressureas a team, and that they all clearly thoroughly enjoyed the experience.”Rebecca Atkinson said: “This opportunity at the college has allowed us to manage a kitchen whilst preparing dishes from the restaurants where we work.
"Daniel rightly expects high standards from us and of course we collectively wanted to impress our guests. It was pressurised but a lot of fun.”Delivered in partnership with Kendal College, the English Lakes Hotels Resorts & Venues Culinary Academy is now into its fifth year.
Abbie and Rebecca are working and training at the art-deco Midland Hotel in Morecambe, Bryan Rojas is at Lancaster House Hotel, Maria Cheetham and Travis Locke are at Low Wood Bay Resort & Spa and Jonny Marriott is at the Wild Boar Inn.