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cabrales

Culinary School in Montreal / Quebec

77 posts in this topic

I think you would be better off taking a Berlitz fast French course than head to Riverside. I just can't seem to get a take on that place. Has anyone here attended? Food dwarf, why do you recommend Riverside? I don't want to be mean here, I'm just curious.

As Zach stated, I don't think language will turn out to be a problem at ITHQ these days.

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Riverside is a pretty good place to learn how to cook. I've never been there personally but i know of people who have and they all say that they had a good time. Most of the teachers seem nice there and the kitchen is pretty decent. You shouldn't be discouraged if you can't speak french, I know I can't and I still amange ok. Back to schools... go to a culinary school that has courses that appeal to you. Somtimes it's not just about the name, it's also about enjoying your learning experiences. Go with whichever school feels best for you.

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Blue State _4, all the courses are the same. It's a set government program.

I still say ITHQ. The contacts they have there are amazing -- especially if you want to do a stage in France. And, despite the discipline (I had to wear a friggin' tour de cou for three years) it's a fun school. Wild wild parties.

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lesley, not only is the tour de cou required, now you have to keep your student card visibly attached to your person while in the school. as if you were working for some top secret government agency or something. and then there's the shirt and tie, no jeans, no sneakers... in the winter, i always zipped my jacket all the way up to hide the fact that i was not wearing a shirt and tie.


"Bells will ring, ting-a-ling-a-ling, ting.... the bell... bing... 'moray" -John Daker

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That's nothing! When I was there in 1989, the was a uniform Tabarnac!!! And it was ugly! They dropped it in 1991. Thank God!

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ITHQ is hands down the best school in the province,they have great contacts in France & Italy ,if your planning a stage in Europe and they just renovated there Kitchens and more. : :biggrin:


Con il melone si mangia , beve e si lava la facia

My Nonno Vincenzo 1921-1994

I'm craving the perfct Gateau Foret Noire .

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I was fourtunate to have teachers who were in there sixties(lots of experience), unfortunately it seems now there are a lot of teachers at ITHQ because they could'nt cut it as cooks and want a Monday to Friday 9-5 job.

Long live Francois Picard even if he called me Roast Beef.

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I'm also a recent graduate from St. Pius as of February this past year. Definitely some amazing times mixed with a few major criticisms. All in all I'm quite happy I did it. Considering the short length of the program, if you are deeply interested in professional cooking, starting with this and moving onto a more advanced program later on is a great idea. The way the program here is oriented is much more towards giving you a large kitchen workplace experience. It excels at that. What it falls flat with is structure, organization and facilities. Besides that, the teachers (a majority) are absolutely fantastic. Some may not seem like teachers, but they just require students that can learn to take knowledge from bits and pieces. Everyone there can teach you quite a bit, some are just far better at it in a traditional teaching sense. So, I suppose my 10 months had a good deal of intense learning and fun mixed with a few periods of frustration with the non-linear and completely unstructured way that the program sometimes progresses. Take a tour, meet some of the teachers and then see what you think. For the time and price, I say it is worth it.

Joel

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Come on Jason your french is excellent. Your italian I'm not sure...


Alexandre G.

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well, cookemall, i have to put in a plug for m. francois riopel, my chef for my first two semesters. sure he is young (approx 40) but he was a solid guy to learn from, he had some good ideas for transmitting the knowledge he had, and he also made the silly things like chaud froid as interesting as he could. he let us go crazy on our buffet module, and constantly refered to how such and such a recipe or mise en place could be handled in the work environment.


"Bells will ring, ting-a-ling-a-ling, ting.... the bell... bing... 'moray" -John Daker

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From what I read in the Riverside website, seems as though their new location just opened up this year. Were they situated somewhere else before? Maybe it's just their head office that they moved.

Even though I would understand the basic conversations in french, I will most definately have difficulty in the more advanced terms. I would not want to be confused while the teacher is explaining an important aspect in making the perfect sauce. As good as ITHQ may be, won't you find that if I will be spending half the time trying to figure out what the teacher is saying, I will be not even be able to take the full advantage of this better program?

In any case, I will be going to the schools to visit and see the place in person.

Thanks again for all the info and support. I greatly appreciate it.

Zach: I will take up on your offer, and come have a drink with you soon! :hmmm:

Rex: Thanks for the encouragement in my French. I agree with you that my Italian isn't so great, even if I am Chinese! :raz:

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How about the US schools? I know they're deadly expensive, but anyone know how the ITHQ compares to, say, the CIA in NY or the NECI (New England Culinary Institute)? Or even J&W (Johnson & Wales)? Anyone here been to a school in the US?

I'm more into bread baking personally... took some baking and pastry courses at the ITHQ (the evening/weekend courses for the public), but have recently been going to the King Arthur Flour school in Vermont for all my courses instead.

Thanks -- great thread!

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I guess there aren`t that many of us Riversiders out there. I had a great experience learning to cook there. Great teachers who take you along at good pace. They had good experince. It was a great learning evironment. They have top of the line equipment, they just renovated to add a classroom and tons of fridge space for a butcher course. They also offer a contemporary cooking course for people with professional cooking diplomas. But if you are living in Montreal and àre not quite fluent in french...yes you will learn french cooking terms at Riverside but you will feel more at ease and confident in your first kitchen experience if you don`t have to say ppppardon all day long and pretend you know what`s going on. For you I would suggest I.T.H.Q. I wish I knew when I was a 17 year old punk inlisting at riverside I loved to cook,that`s what I would have done. Anyway take the time to visit and get info on all your options. good luck.......Tony....

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What is the buzz abouit the Hotel d'Institut-a hotel management and cooking school located on Rue St. Denis. We stay there and enjoy the free breakfast prepared by students. I think that it is sponsored by the government. We never stayed for any other meal. The tour of the kitchen was interesting and the students friendly. An economical place to stay.


What disease did cured ham actually have?

Megan sandwich: White bread, Miracle Whip and Italian submarine dressing. {Megan is 4 y.o.}

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elfin, sounds like you're speaking of ITHQ, l'institut de tourisme et d'hotellerie du quebec. it has already been referred to in this thread.


"Bells will ring, ting-a-ling-a-ling, ting.... the bell... bing... 'moray" -John Daker

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:shock:

Well to read about St. Pius X Culinary Institute (my work place) on the net is quite a surprise. A big hello for all the former students and teachers who have responded to this inquiry.

If I may let me clarify a few topics that were discussed.

1- We are a public school and a public school is open to all. We cannot or should I say not allowed to have a selection process. (I know most schools do but that is not my philosophy)

2. The ITHQ wth all it's great facilities is supported by the Bureau of Tourism and not the education department. The guidelines that they follow from the government courses must however be respected.

3. It is hard to soar like an eagle when.... The truth is the ITHQ does produce excellent students but when you select your students you usually will pick the best of the bunch and not a potential failure. With this said where have the ITHQ students been when the school wide competitions happen. And why is it that the only competition they win are the ones we (Pius) find out about after it is a fait accomplit

4. Dollar per dollar the regular schools produce more students on the job market than the ITHQ. (You know renovating buildings full of asbestos is expensive).

5. The mandate from the government is to train people so they can go on the job market as soon as possible. I challenge anyone to show me who as done the better job. The regular schools or ITHQ.

6.As for facilities well yes we are an english school with the occasional narrow minded uninformed idiot running the place down but we have survived and our equipment is up to par now. Yes there still a lot of work to do but we are dealling with gov. funds and the last 3years have been very positive

7. The reason we are successful (read some restaurant revues lately?) is because of the dedication of the teachers. A new stock pot or sauteuse will not make a cook but the dedication of one human being sharing his or her knowledge with another may lead to a lifelong carreer and for many a chance of finally having someone actually care about them as a person. Give us your poor your...... and we will give them a fighting chance to earn a living.

8.Yes we have our problems but who does not. Is it the aging teachers at certain prestigious institions hold th torch long enough to permit other younger ones to come in or is that too late because many of them got fed up 10 years ago and went to bigger and better things. Time will tell.

9.And finally speaking of arrogance it never fails to surprise that a certain school always seems to think they fly above the rest. After attending many meetings for the new program in cooking I was glad to hear that the CSDM (my old school board) will forge ahead with their new facilities in Old Montreal. They had offered a partnership with another school in the downtown area but was turned down twice.

Arrogance has it's price.

Chow ya'll

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Welcome to egullet, Chef Antoine! I think you'll enjoy your stay.

You made some good points in your post; however, I did have to smile a bit to my self when I read in the Gazette last week about Pius's stash of cash ($2000 was it?) that was discovered months after a Valetines day dinner that had produced the revenue...Definately some stuff falling through the cracks here. It's good to have great teachers and all, but how about some equally great directors?

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Another welcome to chef Antoine :smile: . Especially if he is who I think he is. :wink:

Fireweed, I missed the Pius report in the paper about the money. Can you supply more details. Who is taking the heat for this one? The school principal?

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Lesley of coarse it's who you think it is. :biggrin:


Con il melone si mangia , beve e si lava la facia

My Nonno Vincenzo 1921-1994

I'm craving the perfct Gateau Foret Noire .

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Yes it is I, :biggrin: . The money was not missing but put in the :cool: wrong safe. The school is divided now but we still share the same building. The other news about the $20,000 was not from the culinary but the adult sector. I'm not sure what happened there but the gazette reporter got it wrong.

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hahah.. sad.

Didn't see that happening at Pius

/sarcasm

I seemed to get the impression that this behaviour was far too easily possible with my 10 month stay at Pius. There were cracks forming in every direction. But.... the teachers (my teachers)... we're fantastic. I at least left with that. I hope they weren't affected by the cracks, but regardless, they made learning about food more exciting than you could ever imagine.

Joel

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:wacko: Always cracks in the system but really this is a special situation for an educational institution.
Edited by chefantoine (log)

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Lesley,

The article was on the front page of Thursday's paper, November 20th, and Allison Lampert wrote it. Didn't really say who was taking the heat, but I doubt Mr. N!

Fireweed

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It is the teachers and administrative staff that are willing and actually do go the distance that make the greatest difference to all the students at Pius Culinary.

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