7 years ago, I was accepted to the Culinary Institute of America in Hyde Park, New York, the most prestigious culinary academy in the US, on a very generous scholarship. Being in a situation which forced my to stay in LA and work to support my physically incapable mother (who has since recovered), in conjunction with the ridiculous tuition despite the scholarship, I was unable to go.
The CIA is home to some of the world’s most renowned chefs, bakers, food writers, and entrepreneurs, including Anthony Bourdain, Roy Choi, Cat Cora, and Chad Robertson among the many others, and you can imagine how crush I was after realizing I’d be unable to chase my dream like the classically trained master chefs.
Since then, I’ve worked for some of the most reputable chefs in Los Angeles, each one passing on their own culinary expertise first hand. I’ve been a private chef, cooked for A list celebrities, I’ve run my own kitchen, and started a food blog with a relatively large following.
Despite the first hand restaurant experience I’ve gotten over the years which has proven time and time again to be invaluable compared to the culinary school graduates which I worked side by side with, I still wish I’d had the chance to fulfill my love for education, as well as my passion for cooking.
A touch of relief with an auspicious turn of events today, when the culinary-institute-of-america official Tumblr started following my food blog. Do I take it as a sign of reassurance that what has happened and where I’ve ended up is better than where I would have been? Or a premonition of an opportunity still available to me?