Have you heard of SCAFA (the School of Culinary & Finishing Arts)? We met up with Zaigham Haque and his inspiring daughter Alisha at their Dubai based campus, to learn all about this much needed facility for those with a passion for food!
SCAFA is tucked in amongst the high rises that make up Jumeirah Lake Towers (JLT) and surprisingly for Saffron Souk, who are prone to getting just a little lost sometimes, we found the location and parking in no time (Almas Tower is an excellent landmark for parking and then walk down the ramp, turn left and head towards ‘Silver Tower’). Just be mindful of taking any snaps – the security guards don’t appreciate it!
2. Jumeirah Lake Towers – the home of the School of Culinary and Finishing Arts. 3. SCAFA is located at the promenade level of this building; for directions and contact details, click here. 4. Get down there – there is something for everyone, as long as you have a passion for food and entertaining!
Although SCAFA offers almost a full spectrum of courses, from those wanting to pursue a culinary career, to children (as young as 3!) who show an affinity for cooking to corporate team building events and couples evening classes, this is a series business for people who are enthusiastic about food! Having said that they have created a fantastic atmosphere for learning and from the twinkle in everyones eye – we could also see they have a lot of fun! If this sounds like something that might interest you, click here for a schedule of their current courses
SCAFA also appears to think outside the box and with a genuine desire to create a world class culinary school, we were impressed to hear that they offer work placement for their graduates within well known companies such as Meydan Hotels and Emirates Flight Catering. SCAFA can also travel to you; if you meet their basic set up requirements, SCAFA are willing to travel across the emirate allowing groups that may not otherwise have the ability to attend their courses, undertake SCAFA’s professional programs. We like!
5. – 7. We briefly interrupted some professional students undertaking a time pressure test and the heat was on (although everyone still managed a smile and a quick chat – thanks, much appreciated as we have just realised you probably just wanted us to leave so you could get on with it!
8. The admin / reception area was very inviting. We like the library that is taking shape and once we learnt that there was a collection of cooking magazines dating back to the ’50’s we were keen to take a closer look… 9. We couldn’t resist – very funny!
10. 11. & 12. SCAFE – the schools cafe. The perfect place to taste test some students work, hold a group meeting or event or learn about the in’s and out’s of how an operating restaurant works. Speaking of which we LOVE that SCAFA’s professional courses are not just limited to food, but extend to include the business of running a restaurant (check out their Professional Finishing Program here). 13. SCAFA supports Kobo Art – a UAE online Art Gallery. The physical art work in SCAFE adds a nice touch!
14. We have decided we would quite like to become a pastry chef so will be keeping up to date with the latest courses offered at SCAFA 15. But for now maybe we’ll just pop in for an evening class, so we’ll focus on keeping a Wednesday night free!
Please feel free to leave a note below if you have been to SCAFA or SCAFE and what you loved about it – we’ll certainly be reporting back to the Saffron Souk community about any future courses we attend. In the meantime if you need to get in touch with SCAFA, click here for all the details!