Study Tour: Iowa State University

March 2017, we had the pleasure of welcoming six students from Iowa State University to The School of Artisan. Here, each students shares their experiences and memories from their trip ...


I thoroughly enjoyed my time at The School of Artisan Food. The School provided me with the trip of a lifetime, thanks to the wonderful staff who taught us daily, and Kevin, who gave us a look into life on the Estate, London-living, and the culture of the UK! The enthusiasm of all the course teachers helped me take back to Iowa a freshly revived passion for my work as a Culinary Food Scientist. The best part of the trip was the opportunity to eat David Carter’s wood-fired pizzas with the School staff after a long day of baking, not to mention the high quality and delicious meals we received all week from the chefs at the School! I cannot wait to get the opportunity to be back in England, and to check in and once again marvel at all the support and artisan charm Welbeck Estate has to offer to the community. Thank you, The School of Artisan Food.


Through my university’s study abroad program I was able to take several classes at The School of Artisan Food at Welbeck Estate. We took four courses at the school including cheesemaking, a sourdough bread baking course, ‘pig in a day’ butchery and chocolate making. Out of the four courses that my group took while at the school, the ‘pig in a day’ was the most interesting. Butchering a whole pig is not something that we see often in the United States so it was fascinating to see how it was done in the UK.

In all the courses, there were things we could compare and contrast as to what is common in the U.S. For example, at Welbeck, they use a lot of raw milk which is illegal to sell in the states. It was fascinating to see how they use raw milk and what they do to make sure it is safe. All of the instructors were very knowledgeable on their courses and provided a welcoming learning experience. We also had the chance to tour around the Welbeck Estate and hear about the history. Welbeck is gorgeous and it was awesome that the School is right on the Estate. Overall it was a great trip.


I thought my experience at The School of Artisan Food was amazing. I felt like I was being taught by people who not only love their jobs but know what they are talking about. Everyone was friendly. Always saying hello or engaging in conversation with those taking classes. Instructors were extremely willing to work, help and teach me the correct way of doing things. I would come back to the School in a heartbeat if I could. I gained a lot of new knowledge and had refreshers on topics I already learned through classes for my major, Dietetics. I think I could take a lot that I learned at the School and incorporate it into my future career path of being a Registered Dietitian.


The School of Artisan Food on the Welbeck Estate in Nottinghamshire was a delightful culinary adventure. From the time I walked inside the door to the final goodbye, everything from the challenges of tasting to charcuterie to chocolate making were met with knowledgeable, welcoming staff and flawless techniques that even I could begin to master. The Estate itself is a treasure. It can only be described as a rich land of history, culture, and most importantly, food that has the irresistible sense of something special. I entered the experience a novice foodie and left a budding aficionada, more appreciative than ever of the art and traditions behind artisan food.


This past spring break, I was lucky enough to study abroad and take courses at The School of Artisan Food in Welbeck, England. We took many courses such as ‘pig in a day’ butchery, bread baking, cheesemaking and chocolate making. Even though I study Animal Science in school, the chocolate making course was my absolute favorite. It was the perfect way to end our time at the school. Our instructor, Shelly, made it so much more than just a cooking class. I had no idea what really went into chocolate and learned so much about cacao and flavor matching. Not only was the class fun and interesting, we got to take home the treats for our families. After taking Shelly’s course, I’m not sure I can ever look at regular store bought chocolate in the same way again!


During spring break, I studied abroad in England and took short courses at The School of Artisan Food in Nottinghamshire. The first course I did was Introduction to Cheesemaking with Katy Fenwick, who is very knowledgeable and friendly in explaining the science of cheesemaking and teaching the skills. The second course was Pig in a Day in which I was able to meet locals and had a good experience together with them. Chris Moorby and Rich Summers taught butchery techniques, hand cutting skills and the ability to identify cuts of pork. Next, I did Introduction to Sourdough Baking with Emmanuel Hadjiandreou in two days. He taught me carefully how to make a yeast starter and make different types of sourdough breads that I have never done before. I also learned about the science of baking and baking skills in the course. The last course I took was Introduction to Chocolate Making with Shelly Preston, a lovely and also very knowledgeable instructor. I was taught how to choose a quality chocolate by its taste and sound, temper chocolate and create my own chocolate products. I enjoyed this course the most because I was able to take my own products home and give them as handmade chocolate gifts to my family and friends.

Read Senior Lecturer Linda Svendson's blog about her time on the study tour ...

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