International Culinary Center

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International Culinary Center
School type Trade/Vocational
Established 1984 (1984)
Founder Dorothy Cann Hamilton
Status open/active
Authorizer Wine program, Court of Master Sommeliers
Key people Jacques Pépin
Jacques Torres
André Soltner
Alain Sailhac
David Kinch
Emily Luchetti
Cesare Casella
José Andrés
Alan Richman
International students yes
Campuses 3
Nickname ICC

The International Culinary Center was founded as The French Culinary Institute by Dorothy Cann Hamilton in 1984 and has campuses in New York City and the San Francisco Bay Area.[1] The facilities include professional kitchens for hands-on cooking and baking classes, specialized wine tasting classrooms, a library, theater, and event spaces. ICC has several renowned chefs as its deans including Jacques Pépin, Jacques Torres, André Soltner, Alain Sailhac, David Kinch, Emily Luchetti, Cesare Casella and José Andrés.

In addition to its culinary education, the International Culinary Center has published several cookbooks The Fundamental Techniques of Italian Cuisine, which won a James Beard Award in 2013, The Fundamental Techniques of Classic Bread Baking, The Fundamental Techniques of Pastry Arts The Fundamental Techniques of Classic Cuisine, the latter two also winning James Beard Awards in 2010 and 2009.


ICC offers educational instruction in the SoHo neighborhood of New York City and Campbell, CA with an auxiliary campus in Italy.

New York City Campus

This location includes the Michelin-recommended L'Ecole restaurant on the ground floor, that features fare from Culinary program students, as well as a Culinary Theater that hosts events, forums, and lectures from graduates such as David Chang, Bobby Flay, Dan Barber, Wylie Dufresne, Christina Tosi and others.[2] It is located at 462 Broadway, on the corner of Grand Street, in New York City, NY.

The International Culinary Center also is home to FCI Catering & Events, which creates and caters both on and off-premises private events.[3]

California Campus

Opened in 2011, the Center’s West Coast location is in the San Francisco Bay Area of California located in the town of Campbell, CA in Silicon Valley. It is between the wineries of Napa Valley and the agriculture of Salinas near the Monterey Bay.[1] The facilities consist of kitchens, library, theaters, event space and a wine tasting room, which hosts an intensive sommelier training course. The facility is located at 700 West Hamilton Avenue #300, Campbell, CA and occupies the top two floors of its building. The facility is the former location of another culinary school, the Professional Culinary Institute.[4]

Italy Campus

The ICC's Italian Studies program begins in New York City or California, wherein addition to Italian culinary fundamentals, students study the Italian language and culture. Students can then choose to continue their education near Parma, Italy, at ALMA, The International School of Italian Cuisine, where they will also spend nine weeks in school, followed by a nine week apprenticeship (called a stage) working in the kitchen of noted Italian restaurants.[4]


Education offered by the ICC is based on the Total Immersion system. This is a list of the classes and programs offered by the school.[2]

  • Professional Culinary Arts
Classic Culinary Arts is a six to nine month program that teaches students more than 250 classic techniques and training for the stations on the line in professional kitchens. Deans Jacques Pépin, André Soltner and Alain Sailhac designed the core curriculum for this program.
  • Farm-to-Table
Farm-to-Table teaches the French fundamentals with focus on the Hudson Valley's agricultural history and includes tours of a four-season rooftop farm, a Hudson Valley dairy farm, a New York City greenmarket, and an award-winning winery. In New York City, Farm-to-Table also includes a week-long Farm Powered Kitchen program created by ICC graduate and James Beard Outstanding Chef, Dan Barber, Blue Hill Restaurant's kitchen team, and Stone Barns Center's farmers. At ICC's California campus, Farm-to-Table takes full advantage of its location near the Salinas Valley also known as "America's Bread Basket" and includes field trips to artisan farms and larger scale operations and includes one overnight excursion.
  • Professional Pastry Arts
The Pastry Arts program teaches students the classic French fundamental’s to work as a pastry chef. Program subjects vary from pâte à choux and pâte feuilletée to sugar pulling and chocolate. Deans include pastry chefs Jacques Torres and Emily Luchetti.
  • Cake Techniques & Design
The 300-hour Comprehensive Cake Techniques & Design Program covers the fundamentals of cake baking and construction, layers and fillings and how they work together, as well as both classical and contemporary decorating techniques. This program also teaches the skills to open and run a cake shop.
  • Art of International Bread Baking
Over eight weeks, students learn to work with varied mixing techniques, pre-ferments, and leaveners to understand bread baking chemistry, and how to measure factors such as desired dough temperature and friction factor. Students also learn how to shape dough into uniform loaves such as braided challah, batard, and round boules. Art of International Bread Baking is the only accredited professional bread class in the U.S.
  • Italian Culinary Experience
This immersive seven-month program teaches hands-on Italian cooking in New York and California and at the campus near Parma, Italy. The dean of Italian Studies is Cesare Casella renowned authority on Italian cuisine and Chef/Partner of Salumeria Rosi in NYC.
  • Wine
The International Culinary is the first wine sommelier school in the world to be approved by the renowned Court of Master Sommeliers.[citation needed] The program combines lecture with intensive tastings, food pairings, and practice of service techniques. Students learn how to taste and evaluate bottles from around the world. Most students will have the option to take the Court of Master Sommeliers' Certified Sommelier Examination on-site at the end of the course. ICC is the only school to have 11 Master Sommeliers on its faculty.
  • Culinary Entrepreneurship
This ninety hour course teaches students interested in owning a restaurant, cafe, bakery, or other culinary establishment how to write a business plan, run a business and identify pitfalls that could costs money, time and frustration. Industry leaders such as owner of The Meatball Shop and ICC graduate Michael Chernow share their expertise, successes, setbacks, and secrets. Instructors include top flight academics from Babson College, Cornell University School of Hospitality and Union Square Hospitality Group.
  • Craft of Food Writing
Authors and critics, Alan Richman, ICC’s dean of Food Journalism teaches this six session course at ICC's NYC campus.

Reception and review

In 1984 when the school first opened, it was visited by renowned chef Julia Child. Child was sufficiently impressed with the school that she arranged to have it profiled on Good Morning America a week later.[4] Founder Dorothy Hamilton later stated that Child became the "fairy godmother" of the school, "She became a patron of the school the rest of her days."

In July 2014 a lawsuit was filed by two program graduates against the ICC for alleged misleading advertising claims regarding post graduation employment.[5] The former students, plaintiffs Larry Grabovan and Daniel Oglander, completed an ICC program at the New York campus and subsequently landed entry-level jobs. Their suit is based on the claim that they could have gotten these jobs without any training.[5] Then on November 10, 2014, New York Southern District Judge Katherine B. Forrest denied ICC's motion to dismiss the lawsuit.



  1. 1.0 1.1 Norrie, Brenda (June 25, 2014). "Campbell facility: Don't stay out of the kitchen" (PDF) (Volume 64, #26). Campbell Express. Retrieved 1 September 2014. 
  2. 2.0 2.1 "The International Culinary Center". 
  3. "FCI Catering & Events". 
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 Van Ells, Mara. "International Culinary Center celebrates four years in Campbell". San Jose Mercury News. Retrieved 18 July 2014. 
  5. 5.0 5.1 DeJesus, Erin (July 15, 2014). "International Culinary Center Slapped With Lawsuit by Former Students UPDATE". Retrieved 18 July 2014. 
  6. Culinary Hall of Fame Induction in 2013

External links

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