Australians Tim, Teresa and Frankie with South African Sean, who were coincidentally in the same Fine Cooking class at ICE.

As I walk around the school, from time to time, a Chef Instructor will point out students or situations of interest in his or her class. That happened in big way this past Thursday when on the 12th floor I went by Chef Anita Jacobson’s section of our extremely popular five-day recreational cooking class, Techniques of Fine Cooking 1.

The interesting, strange and highly improbable fact was that in this class of 13 people, three of them came separately from Australia. They did not know each other prior to arriving at the class. Added to this mix, was a student from South Africa, and one of the guitar players from the Saturday Night Live band.

The Australians came from three different big cities down under. From Sydney, I met Tim Andrews, a consultant. From Melbourne, there was Frankie Cox, a student, who also operates a small catering business. And from Canberra, former scientist Teresa Symonds, who said that her family was looking forward to tasting the results of her learning. I wanted to make some jests about Vegemite (a food product unique to the Australia), but they got to the topic first. The class’s South African delegate from Johanesburg, Sean Nossel, actually now lives in New York. But his accent was still quite thick.

SNL house band guitar player Jared with Chef Instructor Anita Jacobson.

The SNL house band guitar player was Jared Scharff. As a fellow guitar picker, it was fun to meet him. Though I would not have recognized him with shorter hair than I recall from five years of seeing him on TV. He has, or is planning to take some of our Korean cooking and Knife Skills classes. Food and music do go together so well.

Over the years, I’ve come to realize that we have a whole lot of interesting students  — in both the culinary career and recreational cooking courses  — at ICE.  Just goes to show that the love and appreciation of cooking and eating is something that brings people together, in a very good way!

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