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The Secret Ingredient is Love

by User Not Found | Feb 27, 2018

Students of GFESS cuisine program host Valentine’s Day dinner

Pomegranate Restaurant

Grade 9 student Sabrina Carlson shows off the heart-shaped pasta that the students from Greater Fort Erie High School's cuisine program had made for the special Valentine's Day dinner. - James Culic/Metroland

Pomegranate Restaurant

The Pomegranate Restaurant had live music for their special Valentine's Day dinner. - James Culic/Metroland

Pomegranate Restaurant

Students from Greater Fort Erie High School's cuisine program were busy whiping up meals on Valentine's Day. - James Culic/Metroland


Students enrolled in Greater Fort Erie Secondary School’s (GFESS’s) cuisine program got to try their hand at running a special event last week, when their regular Wednesday restaurant night fell on Valentine’s Day.

“This is a great event,” said GFESS principal Fred Louws, as he munched on his heart-shaped ricotta-stuffed ravioli. “This program is really a blueprint for the rest of the province to follow.”

The Pomegranate Restaurant is one of the leading student-operated high school restaurants in Ontario, and in its short 10-year run, it has collected numerous awards and accolades at various provincial competitions. The restaurant is open every Wednesday during the school season, which means this year, the students were tasked with mounting a special Valentine’s Day dinner.

Every aspect of the dining experience — from selecting the menu to setting up the table linens — is done by the students. The student’s cuisine instructor, Afshin Keyvani, is there to make sure nothing goes off the rails; but otherwise, he remains hands-off through the dining experience, giving the students the opportunity to do their own thing.

When it came time to move the cuisine program from the old Fort Erie Secondary School (which closed last year) to the new building, Keyvani was prepared for the change and had the students out and about on the town, cooking up food and serving at various events to help raise funds for the new school. The fundraising allowed them to kit out the kitchen at GFESS with a full complement of equipment and cooking tools.

For more information about the restaurant, visit or call 905-991-1132, ext. 61890, to make a reservation.

By: James Culic, Niagara This Week