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Sunderland students set up American-style diner to show off new skills

Academy 360 pupils Laura-Louise Holden and John Chapman.
Academy 360 pupils Laura-Louise Holden and John Chapman.

Students at a Wearside school enjoyed a taste of America.

A stars and stripes flavour was brought to Academy 360 by students as part of their studies.

All of our students worked so hard and showed real dedication

Rachel Donohue

Youngsters created their own American-style diner serving up burgers and cheesecake amongst a three-course gastronomic delight for family and friends as part of their GCSE course work.

The 16 Hospitality students planned the menu, prepared and cooked all the food, served guests and even designed the table decorations with Hollywood star-themed place mats under the guidance of food technology teacher, Jo Tissington.

Their tasty US influenced menu whetted diners’ appetites with starters, mains and puddings including chicken goujons, burgers, chilli con carne, cheesecake and coffee.

Students spent nine hours preparing and cooking the food in Academy 360’s classroom kitchen, and then served guests drawn from family and friends as well as Principal, Rachel Donohue, Governor, Chris Pennison, and Laidlaw Schools Trust Chief Executive Jane Spence.

The teenage students were given an ovation by guests at the end of the evening, alongside talented Academy 360 singers and musicians who accompanied the evening.

As a reward for their outstanding cuisine and to see how fulfilling a catering career can be, the young cooks will be treated to a meal at Sunderland College’s City Bistro training restaurant which offers a high-end dining experience within the college’s city campus.

Ms Donohue said: “Everything guests saw and experienced on the night was down to the students, from the table mats which students designed and prepared, to the ordering of the balloons, the tables being set, waiters and waitresses, the food and even the menu design.

“All of our students worked so hard and showed real dedication to make the evening such a success with great feedback from parents on the quality of the food and the table service.”