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Christopher Hardcastle, March 2015 Student of the Month

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Christopher HardcastleMarch 2015 Student of the month is Christopher Hardcastle, a Marine Corps veteran whose love for food and wine inspired him to change career paths from anthropology to the culinary arts. Read his energizing story!

Name: Christopher Hardcastle
Age: 27
Hometown: Houston, Texas. I was raised here. I love it, except for the traffic!
Course of study:  AAS in Culinary Arts
Graduation: October 2015
Project for internship: I’m applying for a job at Four Seasons hotel to do my practicum, for four or five months. It’s very exciting!
Personal motto: Try to be honest with everybody about everything

  • What is your favorite food and beverage?

I don’t really know, I love all sorts of food, that’s why I decided to get into this. I especially like curry, it’s really cool because you can just add so many different ingredients and spices.

I was doing the wine program, so I love wine, but also whisky and bourbon. I loved my experience in the wine program. I actually stayed friends with Alex (wine instructor) and we talk occasionally. One day when my schedule allows it I’d like to take the Sommelier Exam to be a certified sommelier. I’ll study that after my AAS.

  • What is the best meal you’ve ever had (the food, the place, the people, the experience…)?

When I went to Barbados with my wife, this one really simple meal was made for us, and it was a fried flying fish salad, it was very good, and out of all the meals I had while I was there or practically my entire life, that’s the one that sticks out the most for some reason. It was so simple but so delicious!

  • Why did you want to become a chef? What sparked this career change?

After my service in the military I went to the University of Houston to study anthropology. I didn’t really enjoyed it as much as I thought. I started thinking about cooking with my mom and grandmother while growing up and then one night, as cliché as it is, I actually had a dream about becoming a chef, cooking for people. I thought about it more and more, and realized that I love to eat, cook and drink and I wanted to make it a career.

  • When did you decide to come at Culinary Institute LeNôtre?

I decided to come here a couple months before starting the wine program. I felt, this was the only school that was worth it, because the other schools didn’t seemed as good. I was specifically interested in the wine program.

  • What is the most important thing you learned at CIL? Do you have a specific memory?

We learn so many things here, it’s hard to choose one! Maybe how to make a “roux”, a thickening agent created by cooking flour and butter used to cook sauces. I love to make sauces.

  • What is your most interesting subject at school right now?

I like the Master Chefs class, and also the Hotel Management elective. I learn a lot.

  • What would you like to do after graduation?

I’d like to travel the world with my wife and discover different ethnic food and their dining culture.

You can learn more about our A.A.S. in Culinary Arts here.  We offer Sommelier Electivestives in all our AAS programs.

Contact us to learn about our Sommelier program