Topics:  queensland college of wine and tourism, stanthorpe

Guess who's cooking your dinner tonight?

WOOD FIRED: Former QCWT executive chef and food and beverage training manager Andrew Simpson with a perfectly prepared pizza. Photo Daniel Elliott / Stanthorpe Border Post
WOOD FIRED: Former QCWT executive chef and food and beverage training manager Andrew Simpson with a perfectly prepared pizza. Photo Daniel Elliott / Stanthorpe Border Post Daniel Elliott

HE WILL not be hanging up his chef's jacket and hat but there are new challenges ahead for Andrew Simpson.

Mr Simpson's tenure as executive chef and food and beverage training manager at QCWT has drawn to a close and while he will continue to be involved with the college on a casual basis he said running the kitchen had been a fantastic experience.

"Starting off from scratch was a good challenge and it was really good to master my trade then fall back into grassroots teaching," he said.

"We've come a long way since the first bistro day we hosted where the menu consisted of one page of basic items.

"Today it is a four-page full a la carte menu so we set and achieved a very high standard which helped the industry all over the region."

As well as helping improve standards at the QCWT's Varias Restaurant, Mr Simpson said a highlight of his time at the college had been catering for some of Stanthorpe's larger events.

"One thing I've really appreciated during my time at the college was catering some of the big civic centre events, like the Gremlins junior rugby league and the Border Post anniversaries," he said.

"The biggest event we catered for was the Rhythm and Reds at Rumbalara Winery which was an African feast for 800.

"I also promoted and fostered the co-ordination between charities and hosting events for them at the college."

With his next challenge - starting an onsite catering business - Mr Simpson said he would be moving from a commercial kitchen into a more intimate cooking area.

"I've started an onsite catering business so if you want to host a dinner party we'll come into your kitchen and cook for you,' he said.

"I'll still be involved with training and larger events at the college but only on a casual basis."



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