Rensselaer Educational Center students in Chef Andrew Ottati’s Culinary Arts program are busy preparing for the upcoming 2019 ProStart Invitational on March 23 at the Culinary Institute of America in Hyde Park. Chef Ottati’s students are no stranger to regional and state competitions. Students have competed in the Culinary contest at ProStart for several years.
For the first time this year, the REC Culinary class will have a team in the Management Competition as well. While seniors will prepare a full three course meal for judging, juniors will present an original restaurant concept, complete with proposal, business plan and verbal presentation.
Participation in the Management Competition allows students to demonstrate their knowledge, passion and creativity in the restaurant industry. The REC Management team includes Kimberly Goldstein and Owen Green from Lansingburgh CSD and Dalton Garceau from East Greenbush CSD. The three are excited and proud of their restaurant concept and look forward to participating and showcasing their skills.
Teams are invited to create a food concept idea that will be marketed to residents of “ProStartville, USA”. Prostartville is a diverse community of families, students, and young professionals that enjoy a thriving arts scene, a large university with a strong sports program, an international airport, and unique neighborhoods.
The REC team is excited to bring their food truck, “Steak on the Moove” to Prostartville. They believe a unique and portable restaurant concept will fit well in a community with a large university and thriving sports community. There’s a lot of hungry mouths to feed at sporting events, and offering unique steak creations will offer something unique to the typical offerings at sporting events.
“We chose students and athletes as our target market because they’re always hungry, especially after big games,” says Garceau.
Chef Ottati asked each student to participate based on previous in-class presentations.
“It was exciting to be asked by Chef to represent our program. I felt happy and proud and said yes right away,” says Green.
The top three teams competing at state level contests will move on to the national competition in Washington DC. The REC team wants to win, but will be happy to place in the top three. College scholarship money will be available for top teams.
“This project is definitely challenging, but in a good way. We are putting our best work out there and learning so much in the process,” says Goldstein.
The team of Garceau, Goldstein and Green – the three “G’s” – are a force to be reckoned with and are definitely “on the moove.”