Home News Local news Culinary Arts Program Underway at the Skill Center

Culinary Arts Program Underway at the Skill Center


March 12, 2008 — If you've dreamed of being a chef, the Raphael O. Wheatley Skill Center: V.I. Career and Technical Institute is now running classes to help you get started.
"It's set up like a culinary-school operation," Leslie Theo Gumbs said.
Gumbs, who heads the V.I. Culinary Team, is teaching the classes. They started Monday and will run through June 13.
Registration is ongoing for the next two weeks. It costs $50.
All students must take the basic sanitation and nutrition classes, but may pick and choose from the more advanced classes, Gumbs said. They include hands-on cooking, meat fabrication, West Indian cooking and continental cooking.
Once the students get past the sanitation and nutrition classes, they'll run a lunch program in which they'll do all the work.
Gumbs has made a name for himself locally and nationally. He owns a catering company, Theo's Personal Chef Services and Theo's Gourmet Caribbean Foods. He has manufactured his own personal line of island sauces and marinades, seasoning blends and vinaigrettes.
He was featured in New York Caribbean Week 2006 and 2007, making guest appearances on "The WB Morning Show" and CBS's "The Early Show," and at Bloomingdale's and Williams-Sonoma.
He has catered meals for former President Bill Clinton and his family, former President Jimmy Carter, Mike Tyson, Denzel Washington, the Victoria's Secret swimsuit models, Eddie Murphy and former Gov. Roy L. Schneider.
Gumbs created the Angostura Tomato Jam featured in the January 2007 issue of Trinidad and Tobago's The Distiller. He won an award for best usage of Angostura aromatic bitters at the 2006 CHIC Conference in Miami.
The chef studied at the American Culinary Federation-Atlanta Chapter in a three-year apprenticeship and chef-certification program at Atlanta's Piedmont Driving Club.
For more information on the culinary program, call 774-6277.
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