SANTA MARIA, California – Pioneer Valley High School’s culinary arts students learned how to make Olive Garden’s fettuccine Alfredo and the famous endless breadsticks with the restaurant’s general manager when he toured the classroom kitchen.
General Director Leonard Rodriguez brought some “secret ingredients” to the class and taught students how to master the sauces to meet Olive Garden standards, said Santa Maria Joint Union High School District spokesman Kenny Klein.
“Having Leonard from Olive Garden was a good learning experience,” said Naomi Navarro, a junior at Pioneer Valley.
“He shared his personal experiences and knowledge from the company with us. The fettuccine Alfredo was so delicious and it tasted just like Olive Garden!”
Rodriguez tasted each sauce and selected a winner whose sauce most resembled Olive Garden in taste, texture and consistency from each class. He spoke to the students about the cost of waste for Olive Garden.
Olive Garden has been a high school partner for several years, offering hands-on experience and restaurant tours, Klein said.
“We are fortunate to have Olive Garden as an industry partner,” said Panther Culinary Arts-Family and Consumer Science Teacher Jenn Montanez. “The students really enjoyed this opportunity to meet Leonard and create a recipe for Olive Garden.”