Two students from ATU have won the FICAHT strand two competition in France last week. Adam Walsh, a second year Culinary and Gastronomic Science student and Emma Ryan, a second year International Hotel Management student represented ATU at the annual France Ireland Culinary Arts, Hospitality and Tourism event.
The FICAHT network aims at bringing together French and Irish Higher and Further Education Institutions delivering education and training in Culinary Arts, Hospitality and Tourism, encouraging student mobility, developing EU-wide programmes through the Erasmus+ scheme and exchanging good practices.
FICAHT is supported by the Embassy of France in Ireland, the Higher Education Authority, the Irish Embassy in France and Campus France.
Students from Irish TU’s and FE colleges are partnered with French students and through a series of interactions teams develop, plan and serve a three-course menu with drinks celebrating Irish and French produce. Every year the competition has a theme and this year the theme was Innovation, Teamwork and Sustainability.
Participants were asked to consider requirements for sustainable meals including zero waste. Innovation and the use of locally sourced Irish and French ingredients was at the heart of the menu. This was very evident in their choice of centerpiece a 3-dimensional mimosa tree which had different audio features which were shared with the diners as they ate their meal. The Tree was decorated with both French and Irish herbs and flowers carefully foraged by the competitors to compliment the sensory profile of each course.
ATU were teamed with Juliette Grell and Alexis Wiard from the Lycee Savary, Ferry, Arras tutored by Mathieu Scipilliti.
Jacinta Dalton, Head of Culinary Arts and the Service Industries at ATU Galway attended FICHAT where she presented to the forum. Ms Dalton said the judges stated the standard was Michelin star level; “I would like to congratulate Emma and Adam who were wonderful ambassadors for ATU, their high level of innovation, skill and professionalism was a testament to the standard of
teaching and dedication by their lecturers and mentors. Judges commented that the standard of food and service was equivalent to that found in a Michelin star restaurant”.
The students were mentored by several faculty lecturers in the Galway International Hotel School including Anne O’Leary, Mary Reid, Elizabeth Fox and Colin Gilligan.