Dallas ISD culinary students add flavor to this year’s Taste of Dallas


This weekend at Fair Park, many of the top Dallas restaurants will sell samples of their wares at the Taste of Dallas, a culinary showcase of flavors and foods of all types and descriptions.

And among the established culinary artists and restaurateurs will be a younger group of chefs: students from two of Dallas ISD’s culinary arts programs.

Wilmer-Hutchins High School’s culinary team, which competed and won Texas Restaurant Association’s Students’ Taste of Dallas at Trinity Groves in February, will serve three-ounce pork sliders at the event. Meanwhile, the School of Health Professions at the Yvonne A. Ewell Townview Center’s culinary team will dish out turkey sliders. Both options will go for $4 per plate.

Richard Grimsley, director of Career and Technical Education in Dallas ISD, said the Taste of Dallas offers a phenomenal opportunity for Dallas ISD culinary arts students to have experiences beyond their high school classroom. The students will be challenged with preparing food for 100,000-150,000 people, creating arrangements for food service from a booth, and interacting directly with clients.

“The Taste of Dallas celebration will provide students a chance to see and participate in all aspects of a major culinary event,” Grimsley said. “Participation in Taste of Dallas will provide our programs the opportunity to be showcased among Dallas’ best food masters.”

Grimsley said event attendees will see and taste the students’ quality preparations and their commitment to developing their culinary arts skills. Meanwhile, professional restaurateurs will have an opportunity to observe and consider Dallas ISD graduates as candidates for future employment, Grimsley said.

According to GuideLive.com, this year’s Taste of Dallas event “will feature outdoor food booths from more than 70 restaurants selling samples for $1 to $4 each. The event will also feature a barbecue contest, food trucks, eating competitions, a marketplace and a dessert destination called the Sweet Factory. Taste the Difference, a VIP event presented by Culture Map and benefiting the American Heart Association, will have food and drink samples, plus demonstrations by chefs, including Dean Fearing and Omar Flores.”

Get tickets here. General admission is $12 per person, free for children 10 and younger. Taste the Difference sessions are $125 each. Parking is $12 per car. Walgreen’s will offer discounted tickets from $9 May 12.

The culinary arts program is one of 16 career paths available to Dallas ISD students. The district’s proposed Comprehensive Plan aims to expand the career programs in an effort to graduate more students ready for college and careers.

The Future Facilities Task Force, a citizen committee, has been working with district officials to consider potential funding options to grow career programs and other academic offerings, as well as make related facility improvements. The task force is conducting community meetings to gather public input on the proposed Comprehensive Plan. The group will make its recommendation to trustees later this month on what elements of the plan the district should fund and how the funds should be raised.

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