Students make tasty TV appearance alongside top Teesside chef

24 May 2019

Budding student chefs were offered a taste of life in a busy Michelin-starred restaurant, as part of a TV feature set to air this weekend. 

Four Middlesbrough College students – normally used to working in the College’s professional kitchens – helped prepare plates for the evening service at The Man Behind the Curtain in Leeds, under the guidance of owner and Teesside chef Michael O’Hare. 

Michael, from Eston, opened the restaurant in 2014 and was shortly awarded a Michelin star in October 2015.  

Proud of his roots and keen to inspire the next generation, Michael invited some of the College's very best culinary students to his restaurant to learn first-hand the methods used in a Michelin Star restaurant.

Offering up a unique dining experience, students worked on weird and wonderful dishes, each bold in design and presentation.  

Lisa Proffitt, associate director of Service Industries & Retail Skills at Middlesbrough College, said: "Experiences like this are invaluable for our students and give them a real insight into the world of work, as well as the demands that come with working in a fast-paced environment such as a busy restaurant kitchen. 

"Our tutors are proud to help students turn their passion into a profession and Michael’s story is a shining example of someone from our region who’s done exactly that.”

The experience was captured by the BBC as part of its We Are Middlesbrough series, a week-long campaign that shines the spotlight on Middlesbrough ahead of Radio 1's Big Weekend festival. 

Set to air on BBC Breakfast on Saturday morning, the piece will feature Jake Simpkins, 19; David Winn, 26; Listi Hamilton, 40 and Sam Holmes, 18. 

Following a hectic day preparing the 10-course tasting menu, the group was able to enjoy the fine dining experience themselves, courtesy of Michael and his team.  

The students study across a range of culinary and hospitality courses at Middlesbrough College including Professional Cookery and Patisserie. 

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