|▲ President Jang Seo-won|
Apicius Korea has the same curriculum and teachers of Apicius Italy. The first year of the 2 year course is done at Apicius Korea and the remaining year in Florence, Italy. On successfully finishing the course, an opportunity of working for a Michelin restaurant is given. Florence is one of the Michelin restaurant condensed areas in the world.
“Italians have good feelings about Korean students. They are dexterous, hardworking and quick. So there are a lot of opportunities working at a prestigious restaurant not only in Italy but also in Seoul as I’m working on business partnership with top hotels in Seoul at the moment” says Jang Seo-won, pricipal of Apicius Korea.
Apicius was founded in Florence, Italy, 1997 and is now included in AFU (About Florence University of the Arts), consisted of 9 colleges, partnered with 200 universities in the world. In accordance with the global level curriculum of Apicius, English is used at all classes at Apicius Korea.
Apicius has two divisions: cooking and wine, and hospitality management. The first year is for general knowledge and the second year for a choice of cooking, baking and pastry, wine or wellness. After graduation, students can decide whether they go for a master’s course consisted of cooking or baking and pastry; successfully finished are given Chef de partie certificate. All credits earned here are globally recognized.
Commis Chef from the WACS (World Association Chefs Societies) is given to students at successfully finishing the course. The WACS is consisted of associations from 86 countries. It is notable that the title ‘chef’ is not easily given to those who have not obtained academic courses and a certain period of apprenticeship.
Passion in cooking
Jang has worked as a cooking instructor for 18 years and traveled the world to learn different recipes. “I have all most all cooking certificates from Korean, Chinese and Japanese to western, food coordinator, sommelier, tea master and perfumer. I traveled the world to find different recipes and deepened my knowledge about food. So I wanted to teach what I have learned and experienced to young dreamers with passion in cooking.”
There are many good cooking schools in the world. But I think Italian food is just the basic of everything. Italian food is like alpha and omega of food. I saw an excellence at Apicius Italy and asked the school to allow me to open a branch in South Korea. Thankfully, the school also saw my passion in food and I eventually opened a branch with the same curriculum and the teachers of Apicius Italy.”
To make the curriculum as practical as possible, Jang also secured a restaurant within the school building where students of Apicius Korea can practice what they learned. For ordinary people who also wish to learn the curriculum of Apicius Korea, special courses are being offered. Also, there is a course for professional chefs.
In a way, Apicius Korea plays a role to spread Korean food to the Italian teachers who show a great interest in Korean food and culture. “They didn’t know much about Korea but I observed that they were surprised by Korean food and services.”
“It is my goal to let the world know how excellent and talented Korean cooks and chefs are. And I’m ambitious to found a cooking high school within 5 to 10 years. The earlier you start your dream the better.”
신태섭 기자 firstname.lastname@example.org