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Weymouth College apprentice Adam Bentley is pursuing his culinary dreams at popular local restaurant, The White Pepper.

Having felt uninspired in his academic studies, Adam discovered a passion for cooking while training at Weymouth College’s Avenue Restaurant – a student-led professional restaurant, dedicated to discovering and developing the finest young chefs and hospitality staff.

He has now taken up an apprenticeship at The White Pepper, one of Weymouth’s most highly-regarded restaurants, specialising in Keralan cuisine.

Adam, aged 18, is being mentored by chef patron Louis Anthony, originally from South India. He has worked in some of the top restaurants across the globe, including for celebrity chef Marco Pierre White, and retains a close relationship with the College having completed formal training here himself.

Apprentice Adam is fully immersing himself in the regional traditions of Kerala, learning the official language Malayalam, and both he and Louis have enjoyed learning about each other’s cultures.

Speaking to the Dorset Echo, Adam said: “I didn’t want to be a nobody. I wanted to get out there and do something. When I started cooking, I fell in love with it. The more I’ve been doing it the more I like it.

“They have allowed me an experience. Every other job I worked in or previous courses I’ve been on in college, there’s always that one person that doesn’t like it. It’s not like that here. Everyone enjoys it.

“I’m proud of my development so far. When I first started, I was a mess. I could make the stuff but then my work area wasn’t together and organised, but now I can stay on top of it.”

“As the curtains fall on another exhilarating shift, I have the privilege of sharing a meal with my colleagues, savouring traditional Keralan dishes and exploring new flavours that might grace the menu soon. It’s a genuine honour to be part of this incredible team.”

Adam is planning to return to Weymouth College to continue his Level 3 studies in cookery.

White Pepper apprentice

Weymouth College apprentice Adam Bentley with chef patron Louis Anthony of The White Pepper (photo credit: Richard Budd)

Preparing students for careers in the catering industry

The College offers a range of courses in Catering and Hospitality for school leavers, apprentices and adults, based at The Avenue Restaurant at our Cranford Avenue campus, where students gain the skills and the high standards needed for a career in the industry.

A strong and work-ready student experience is at the heart of what The Avenue offers. Having the opportunity to work alongside Dorset employers, take part in local restaurant takeovers and work with guest chefs ensures students balance the academic study necessary to understand skills with a varied and highly practical skills-led experience.

Our students learn the importance of team-working and communicating in the kitchen and restaurant setting, but we also encourage development of individual skills and passions and our students regularly compete in regional and national competitions with great success.

Find our more about our Catering and Hospitality courses here.

The Avenue Restaurant at Weymouth College is open to the public for weekday lunches Wednesday to Friday, and special events including our popular guest chef nights and jazz nights with live pianist, as well as private functions.

To find out more or book a table, click here.

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