The Academic Bistro is the centerpiece of Drexel’s Hospitality Management, Culinary Arts, and Food Science programs. Tucked away on the sixth floor of the university’s Paul Peck Problem Solving and Research Building, the facility includes three professional kitchens and a full-sized dining room with an adjoining conference room, a wine cellar, and a bar and lounge. Two large screen monitors and an audio sound system convert the space easily from a beautiful, full-service restaurant to a lecture hall.
Students taking courses in hospitality management and culinary arts utilize the Academic Bistro to rehearse the skills that will prepare them for a successful career in hospitality and fine dining. In addition to sourcing and preparing a full menu, instructors cover the finances, management, and delegation of staff necessary to run a dining room.
During the Fall, Winter, and Spring terms, the restaurant is open to the public on the days service courses are running, providing a delicious meal that demonstrates the students’ creativity, planning, and preparation of food as well as the front and back of the house expertise that they are learning in the program.
Students prepare all meals from scratch, as much as possible, from sauce stocks to ice cream, using the freshest, highest quality ingredients. No two meals are the same and are guided by the rule of thumb that all must be delicious and visually appealing. Under the guidance of Drexel instructors, students pick a theme and use it as a guide to prepare and market the meal that includes decorating the restaurant to match the culinary theme. An emphasis on health and sustainability drives students to seek ingredients locally, including produce and herbs grown in Drexel’s student-run garden.
The Academic Bistro now accepts Dragon Dollars.
The Academic Bistro is also host to culinary demonstrations and events that include top chefs and representatives of the food industry from around the country. It is the ultimate showcase for students taking hospitality management and culinary arts courses and a unique opportunity for them to develop the individual and strategic thinking that are key to success in today’s demanding food environment.