Edinburgh Cookery School launches new patisserie diploma

Scotland’s most respected independent cookery school, the Edinburgh School of Food and Wine (ESFW), launch Scotland's first stand alone "patisserie diploma"

Published 6th Jan 2016
Updated 8 th Aug 2023

The Edinburgh School of Food and Wine (ESFW), Scotland’s award winning and oldest independent cookery school, today announced the launch of an innovative new course - a Diploma in Professional Patisserie. This is the first course to specialise in the discipline of patisserie in Scotland.

Applications are now being accepted for the course, which starts in October 2016. Anyone is welcome to apply, from aspiring chefs to those who simply have a passion for pastry. And former ESFW students have already shown interest in mastering the skills and techniques demanded of a pastry chef, and have applied to return to the school to complete the new diploma.

There is a high demand in the catering industry for professionally trained pastry chefs. The skills required from a Chef de Patisserie range from making enriched dough and fabulous filo pastries, to the delicate art of classic patisserie, where painstaking precision techniques are used to create intricate desserts that delight the eye as well as the taste buds.

The three month long course is intensive. Students learn a range of practical skills over a Full Time working week, Monday to Friday. The course is total hands on experience were creativity is encouraged, as modern patisserie requires an imaginative touch alongside expert technique and great concentration.

A formal assessment will be made at the end of each week, allowing the tutors to regularly evaluate how well the students are progressing, this coupled with a tasting with the renowned WI (Women’s Institute) Students are also required to keep a photo journal chronicling their culinary journey as part of their assessment, which they are encouraged to add to their portfolios. Presentation is a key aspect of patisserie, and potential employers will find visual examples of the skills gained to be of great value when considering them for a position.

Ian Pirrie, Principal at the Edinburgh School of Food and Wine, says: “We are very proud to offer this new diploma, the first of its kind in Scotland, to aspiring patisserie chefs and food enthusiasts across the country.

“Scotland has an incredible culinary culture, and many talented chefs with great passion for food and a desire for excellence. This new course will prepare up-and-coming chefs with the fundamental skills and techniques they need to master their craft and succeed in the industry.”

The course is led by Chris Stewart, formally the Head Pastry Chef at the internationally renowned Waldorf Astoria. Continued support will be offered to alumni after they have exited the course. If required, advice can be given to help create a successful CV designed to attract the attention of top restaurants and catering businesses. If an enterprising chef decides to open their own establishment, tutors are able to draw on years of experience in the industry to offer insightful business tips and help design an enticing menu.

Based in central Scotland in the grounds of Newliston Estate, the Edinburgh School of Food and Wine has fostered a reputation for excellence since it was established in 1986. It offers a wide range of courses, from six-month diplomas to one-off specialised evening classes. The school aims to make the educated appreciation of food and wine accessible to everyone, with each course designed by experienced professional chefs to be practical, hands-on and fun.

• You can find out more about the course and the school itself here

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