Thursday, March 28, 2013

CIC Grad's New Restaurant Gets a Great Review

Congrats to CIC grad Nathan Conkle for a great review of his new restaurant, The Gathering Cafe. The Post & Courier read: 
The Gathering Cafe: W. Ashley neighborhood restaurant antidote for fast food with fresh, local. 
"Conkle learned and practiced his craft at Magnolias, The Sanctuary at Kiawah Island and Whole Foods. He channels the River Cottage in Britain for his inspiration, and although there are no hedgerows or pastures surrounding his cafe, there is a simplicity and straight-forwardness to the cooking and service. ... 

"The Gathering Cafe aims to please. Conkle and his team are season- and ingredient-focused. Shopping in the delicious pantry of the Lowcountry arms them well in the local and cafe food genre." For the complete review, go to:

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

The Wedding Cake Class Has a Bunny, too.

Not to be outdone by the Advanced Chocolates class, Chef Sonoski's Wedding Cake Class made their own Easter project.
Back Row, left to right:Chef Sonoski, Allyson King, Alyssa Channell, Rachel Jacob, Yvonne Ouellette, Sonia Boone
Front Row, left to right: Mya Tanner, Elizabeth Pangalangan, Shatika Doyle, Jessica Bell, Lauren Browner, Amber Tavender-Blair, Kirsten Welcher

On the week of this project, the class learned how to do modern sculpted cake design, utilizing other edible mediums such as Rice Krispy treats, modeling chocolate, and fondant. 

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Advanced Chocolate and Sugar Class Brings Easter to CIC

Thanks to Chef Gronert's class for getting us in the spirit! In the picture with him are:

Bottom row from left to right: Abigail Wiant, Jessica Crosby, Dorotea Sotirova, Elizabeth Cardwell, Sonia Boone, and Darius King
Top row from left to right: Jennifer Mains, Christine Potter, Michelle Welter, Allyson King, Alyssa Channell, and Thomas Bell.

Great job, everybody!

Friday, March 22, 2013

Thanks to Le Creuset for Our Dining Room Centerpieces

We've just finished the redo of the Relish Restaurant Group Dining Room on Main Campus. Le Creuset generously donated the components to us to make our table centerpieces and cocottes to hold the packages of sweetener. Doesn't it look great!
Le Creuset

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

CIC Students Assisted at the James Beard Dinner

CIC Students Assisting at James Beard Dinner

Thursday, March 14, 2013

Check Out the Wedding Cake Class!

Last week Chef Sonoski's wedding cake class made Easter Lily Baskets as part of their advanced sugar flower lesson. The lily flowers, buds, and all the leaves are made from gumpaste. It's very hard to tell that they aren't real!

In the photo: Left to right: Mya Tanner, Amber Tavender-Blair, Lauren Browner, and Yvonne Ouellette

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Congratulations to CIC Grad Andrea Upchurch!

Charleston's Hospitality Management Group Inc. just announced that she has become Executive Pastry Chef for Cypress and additionally will now oversee pastry production at all three HMGI restaurants, Blossom, Cypress and Magnolias. Andrea began her culinary career with Cypress and Magnolias as assistant pastry chef in 2005, and was quickly promoted to executive pastry chef at Blossom and Magnolias. She oversees the production of all pastries, pastas and bread.

Andrea was interviewed by Eater Charleston: "She now is crafting three distinctive dessert menus to reflect each restaurant. At Magnolias, she tries to keep it 'homey and delicious,' so expect to see her take on bananas and cream, a vanilla pound cake, banana puree and banana pudding ice cream, all topped with a white chocolate sauce. At Blossom, it's more likely to be something along the lines of chocolate hazelnut torte, with some extras, like espresso mousse, salted caramel and fudge sauce.

"But it's at Cypress that 'you can push the envelope a little,' Andrea said. 'My goal was to play off Craig's [Cypress Executive Chef Craig Deihl] stuff. I want to do desserts that are light and clean.' To that end, she's created a creamy Meyer lemon pudding cake, which is finished with roasted strawberries, mint and a citrus confit. 

"Even though the restaurants are in close proximity, Andrea's splitting her time between three kitchens each and every day. Chef Upchurch has a team of six to help her execute her vision and she's looking to hiring another."