Culinary Arts Schools in Kentucky
If you’re thinking of pursuing formal training through culinary school, Kentucky can be the right place for it. Home-style eating places and upscale restaurants thrive in the heart of horse country, and talented chefs are at the core of Kentucky’s current culinary identity and success. Tourists and residents can try out ethnic specialties, opt for American foods, or choose to dine on regional specialties such as cheese grits, Derby pie, burgoo, mint juleps, hush puppies, and fried okra. The bluegrass countryside also plays host to a number of different food festivals for beef, herbs, mushrooms, blueberries and strawberries. Kentucky has long been home to America’s signature liquor; today, more than 200 distilleries form the famous Kentucky Bourbon Trail. Additionally, a broad array of wineries and breweries produce quality Kentucky wines and beers. Amidst all this, successful Kentucky chefs have build up recognition in Food and Wine magazine, been featured in Top Chef competitions, and been honored with James Beard nominations.
Career Planning for Students of Kentucky Culinary Schools
According to data from the National Restaurant Association, restaurant jobs in Kentucky represent roughly 10 percent of total employment. This trend is expected to continue, as the Association projects an 8.4 percent job growth between 2012 and 2022. Data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics lists the 2011 mean annual wages for head cooks and chefs working in Kentucky at $39,740. Budding chefs should expect to work hard in order to move up in the culinary world.
You might ask yourself: do I really need a degree in the culinary arts to start a career? While a degree is not a requirement, attending culinary school gives you the formal education that can be one of the many components to becoming a great chef. Check out the list of culinary schools in Kentucky below and plan for an exciting career in the kitchen and beyond.
Additional Resources for Students at Kentucky Culinary Schools
Kentucky Distillers' Association: Kentucky Bourbon Trail
National Restaurant Association fast facts on the Kentucky restaurant industry
Bureau of Labor Statistics information on chef and head cook careers and education
Lexington Herald-Leader: Restaurant reviews