Posted on October 12, 2015
One of the world’s top gourmet chefs brought his award-winning skills and wealth of experience to Suffolk New College where he served up an interactive talk to students.
Paris-born Franck Pontais has enjoyed a mouth-watering career, earning some of the highest culinary accolades, including the coveted Disciples D’ Escoffier.
He now works for Dutch company Koppert Cress and visited the College to talk to student chefs and front-of-house learners about the fascinating world of micro herbs, giving them the chance to sample the diverse flavours of the global garnishing market.
Franck motivated students about the hospitality industry and the diversity of the food world, speaking passionately about their potential to progress on a range of exciting career paths.
He also talked about his own career – at 22, he was head-hunted by Harrods to expand their delicatessen counter, joining Selfridges six years later where he launched delicatessen counters in both London and Manchester. He eventually moved on to Rhubarb Food Design, catering in VIP Rooms at exclusive events and at the homes of many A-list celebrities, including Stella McCartney.
In 2010, Franck was cited as one of the world's top 20 chefs in HELLO! magazine lifestyle series Haute Cuisine, dedicated to gourmet food and celebrity entertaining.
Level 3 students Bronwyn Fox and David Jones said they were inspired by the subtleties of the flavours, and the range of colours and textures that could be used.
In 2016 Level 3 student chefs will make a return visit to Holland to see how these micro flavour sensations are grown and used, with a practical demonstration and a tasting menu specially designed for the visit.
While Franck left the group inspired and hungry for more, he also provided chef lecturer Chris Martin, who organised the event, with heaps of herbs and micro greens to experiment further with his students.