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Olive Garden has a chef's school?

In Italy no less? At least according to the TV ad Olive Garden trains their chefs at this culinary academy in Italy. True?

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  1. Supposedly true, but I doubt all their cooks are trained there:

    http://olivegarden.com/culinary/cit/

    1 Reply
    1. re: mojoeater

      It sure sounds like a nice perk, assuming this is for real. But it must be really frustrating for someone to win this trip and then have to return to cooking at the Olive Garden.

    2. The original comment has been removed
      1. doesn't mc donald's have a *college* too?

        6 Replies
        1. re: hotoynoodle

          McDonalds University outside of Chicago is not only an incredible training center for McD managers, but the company rents it out for other companies.

          Jfood toured the facility once and will tell you it is EXTREMELY impressive. The corprate exec who escorted us gave quite a passionate description. Before gaining Managerial Status, each manager in training must complete numerous courses including the ability to take apart the Milk shake machine blindfolded (hey never know when that comes in handy). It is fairly rigorous.

          Likewise each graduating class is ranked and then the franchises are distributed based on the class ranking. A franchise in downtown Detroit will earn the franchisee waaaay more money than one in small town America. So its pretty competitive.

          And no, jfood has no affiliation with McD's.

          1. re: jfood

            And the Hyatt Lodge at McDonald's Headquarters is one of the nicest hotels in the area. And it features a lot of McDonald's related art.

            1. re: jfood

              The CIA in NY stresses consistency of quality. A dish should taste the same every time you order. The standard they emulate is McDonalds.

            2. re: hotoynoodle

              I think you are right- I think it is called hamburger u - but I don't think it is to train their cooks. I think it is for the employees to learn the mcdonald way of doing things- I will keep it at that! i think they call it quality customer service. nuff said!

              1. re: hotoynoodle

                And there is or was a DQU, I think.

                1. re: lgss

                  I graduated from Tyson University after learning everything I ever wanted to know about chickens. Took three days. Very pleasant campus,great accomodations and food (no chicken at all! except in class) and free plane trip to Arkansas to boot: as much for PR as anything else.

              2. I would doubt they send all there location chefs to Italy, probably a regional person.

                On the school thing, I used to work with a guy who went to Dunkin Donuts U after buying a franchise.

                1. Management and operations training for franchisees and corporate managers is a helluva lot different from high end chef training!