Culinary & Hydroponics

Culinary Program

JVL’s Culinary Internship program, is located in the Bronx campus, in the historic Bank Note Building in Hunts Point. The culinary program is highly successful at teaching its students how to work interactively while simultaneously learning employability skills in the kitchen setting. The Culinary Program Curriculum satisfies industry standards in nutrition, hygiene, safety, kitchen inventory, and budgeting while also building business skills, character and good work habits. Culinary students are highly motivated to sit for the Food Handler's License. 

The students have the opportunity to practice these skills at the “Wildcat Café” a full restaurant-style kitchen and dining area.  They work together to prepare a delicious cuisine that is enjoyed by JVL Wildcat students and staff, community members and by the employees of the businesses housed in the Bank Note Building.  The aspiring chefs also prepare meals for catered events and annually work side by side with top chefs at the Hotel Pierre at a well-attended gala.

Many of JVL Wildcat’s students, having won city-wide culinary school competitions, not surprisingly, now work in the industry.

Culinary Arts is not just the art of cooking, it is the key essence of life infiltrating all aspects of your life.  Food is the fuel of life reflecting a passion for health, enjoyment, fulfilment and satisfaction.  In the JVL Wildcat Culinary department, you will

  • explore the effects of nutrition on physical and mental health;
  • discuss the issues of the American diet and what simple changes you can make to lift the quality of life lived;
  • examine the ecological foot prints of home and industrial kitchen on planet earth;
  • analyze problems and solutions to limit waste, air pollution to save the plant your children will inherit;
  • study the issues of food waste, starvation, and changes we can make to change these two issues as consumers and proprietors;
  • delve into humanities by traveling around the world by examining regional foods and customs for cultural enlightenment and product diversity; and
  • research the history of food, customs and dishes to understand how they came about and why they are now considered staples or comfort foods.

Best of all you will learn how to cook responsibly keeping in mind all the above with the execution of a professionally trained chef in Classical French techniques through daily exercises of planning, cooking, tasting and discussing all aspect of the culinary arts.  

Wildcat Cafe

The JVL Wildcat Café is a student operated cafe under the supervision of Culinary Instructor, Executive Chef William Peacock.  All food served in the cafe is made daily with the freshest ingredients by our culinary interns. Our stations are managed and executed by aspiring chefs. Our students strive to serve made to order quality food, your feedback is appreciated to enhance their learning experience.

Hydroponics Program

 In JVL Wildcat’s Hydroponics program, students create vertical green walls and window gardens in a closed-loop system that insures nutrients stay within the system and that there is no run-off. The system is disease and pest free. The garden is used to support the school’s culinary program and encourages healthy eating and living through urban gardening. Students are growing rainbow and Swiss chard, tatsoi, red veined sorrel and purple mizuna for the first time.  They are able to plant, grow and eat them all within a 20-foot span. A skylight provides supplementary lighting to the gardens and enables students to go from growing table, to kitchen, to dinner table with no carbon footprint, no pesticides and no waste.