Refusing to be beaten by the consequences of the Canterbury earthquakes, the New Zealand School of Food & Wine (NZSFW) has re-established itself in Auckland.
The school has opened its doors on a world class culinary, wine and hospitality facility and with it a unique culinary experience.
Celia Hay, school founder and director, says the school’s purpose is to inspire and educate New Zealand’s next generation of chefs, hospitality staff, wine professionals and food and wine lovers.
“For us it’s a chance to build on what we achieved in Christchurch,” says Ms Hay.
The building Ms Hay owns in Christchurch – which housed her restaurant Hay’s and the school – is affected by earthquake damage and its future remains uncertain.
“While bittersweet, this is an exciting time for us because the school’s arrival in the city coincides with a time when Aucklanders are increasingly conscious about wanting to learn how to cook great food and about different styles of wine.
“Cooking is a creative and enjoyable necessity of modern life and we’re looking forward to sharing that not only with Aucklanders but all New Zealanders and our international students.”
The NZSFW’s new purpose-built facility in the Viaduct Harbour precinct is at the heart of the city’s vibrant food scene. It represents new opportunities for Auckland – which stands to benefit from the school’s reputation.
The NZSFW provides two streams of education and experience programmes. The first is to students who wish to pursue careers in culinary, wine and hospitality, and the second is to food and wine lovers through its part time programmes and corporate events.
An international reputation for academic excellence
The NZSFW’s international reputation for excellence means the school is already receiving enrolments from international students.
The professional full-time programmes are NZQA-registered. A new course, the Certificate in Cookery and Hospitality (Foundation), targets young people who wish to learn the diverse skills that are required to build a serious career in the hospitality industry.
The NZSFW’s selection of wine programmes includes a two-week Certificate in New Zealand Wine, a 12 week full-time Sommelier course as well as the British registered Wine & Spirit Education Trust (WSET) Intermediate and Advanced Certificates.
“Together with courses designed for New Zealand students, our goal is to attract international groups currently studying cookery or wine that wish to come to New Zealand during their summer holidays and combine learning about our food and wine with tourism.
“We currently have interest from groups in Korea, Germany, Italy and Japan,” says Ms Hay.
Special corporate and group events
The NZSFW has also launched a selection of corporate and group events previously available only in Christchurch.
They include the ‘Team Wine Tasting and Quiz Night’ which is an opportunity to up-skill in wine knowledge and ‘Restaurant for a Night’, the chance to cook professionally in your own restaurant. There’s also ‘Kitchen Confidential’, where guests get to prepare a four course meal under the watchful eye of a professional chef.
“For wine lovers we offer informative and fun nights such as ‘Food and Wine Dynamics’ where guests learn to match food and wine.”
Ms Hay established the school in Christchurch in 1995 and the facility thrived, drawing students both local and international. Now located in the Viaduct, Aucklanders need not travel far to experience the New Zealand School of Food and Wine’s impressive offerings.