Friday, September 7, 2018

Meet Reynolds Culinary Arts Student
Annamaria Zanetti

What motivated you to study culinary arts?
I would have to say my creativity and motivation. I used to bake all the time as a kid and absolutely loved it. I enjoy sharing what I created with my friends and family.

As a kid I also danced (ballet, modern, contemporary), but once I stopped I wanted to still be involved in an art form in some way. So, I thought Pastry Arts would be the best option. Dancing and Culinary have some similarities, such as dedication and creativity.

Where are you in your culinary studies?
I am currently conducting my internship at Westhampton Bakery on Patterson Ave. Even though I have been there for about a week I have learned a lot already. Such as the proper way to ice a cake and the proper thickness for pie crust. I am looking forward to working with Chef Carrie Lammon and her team this semester. One thing I am excited about learning is how to work the dough lamentation machine.

What are you working on now?
I have recently started my Small Business Management Degree, with the intent to one day open my own bakery here in Richmond.

What is your favorite task as a culinary student?
I enjoy the labs in the culinary kitchen. I like the labs because I can apply what I am learning in class.

What is your favorite ingredient?
My favorite ingredient(s) are sugar, butter, and flour because there are endless ways to use them to create different items.

Do you have a “signature dish”?
My signature dish are “brookies”, which have chocolate chip cookies on the bottom and brownies on top. All of my friends and family love the “brookies” and always ask for more.

Another item that I made once and everyone is asking for more of are my spinoff of a black forest cake, which is a chocolate cake filled with a cherry compote and vanilla buttercream. However, in my version, I made chocolate cupcakes filled with a cherry compote and topped with chocolate liquor buttercream; which I brought in for my 21st birthday.

What would you most like to do in culinary arts when you graduate?
My end goal is to open up my own bakery here in Richmond; although, after I graduate there is still a lot to learn before I open my doors.

What is your favorite restaurant in Richmond?
My favorite restaurant is Mayas located on East Grace Street. Maya’s is run by Chef Maria Oseguera.

My first encounter with Chef Maria was when I severed her at the Short Pump Regal movie theater. Then I met her again at the Savor Event at the Jefferson Hotel in 2016. Since then Chef Maria has been my mentor and friend.

What would you tell other potential students interested in studying culinary arts at Reynolds?
The program is stellar; Chef Miller is demanding because he is dedicated to helping his students learn and grow. J Sargeant Reynolds students are so fortunate to have access to the Culinary and Pastry Programs. Anyone considering this career should look closely at the program here.

As a student, I recommend keeping all of your notes and textbook, as well as using the resources provided. Chef Miller and Chef Rounds have been extremely helpful throughout the program. I can’t thank them enough for all they have done for me. Once I graduate, I will continue to reach out to them for help and advice.  

What made you choose the culinary program at Reynold’s?
Before attending Reynold’s, I did not know that there was a Culinary Program. I heard about it from a friend who participated in the Culinary Program. Thanks to her I would have never pursued Culinary Arts here.

Getting my Pastry Arts Degree has been a wonderful learning experience. If I were to go back in time I would still choose the same major.