My Internship at McCormick – Flavor University


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The Student (Me!) Becomes the Teacher

I had the amazing opportunity to be a teaching assistant for a class called Flavor University that’s run by our department at McCormick. During a lecture about Flavor Forecast®, I was taught the origins of the trends, and the stories behind the processes, research, and discovery of them. I was also introduced to several restaurants in the industry that are following these trends. And once the lecture was done, I got to help our students put together some of the featured recipes!

Later, I found another hot trend in a 2017 “grilling” forecast: white BBQ sauce! For the Grilling University class—another one we do in our department—I made McCormick’s recipe for Alabama white sauce. The flavors of the sauce were interesting and I enjoyed them with some of the grilled products we made in class.

As the weeks progress here, I definitely plan to further my education even more by teaching and learning alongside other employees in the different Flavor University classes. I’ll also continue to study the Flavor Forecast®…not only this year’s, but past ones like the 2015 edition featuring an introduction to the fifth tasting sense, Umami. McCormick showcases this fifth sense with vegetable recipes including mushrooms, tomatoes, and nori.

The Present Becomes the Future

So far, this experience has really opened my eyes to the possibilities of flavors in food. Working with McCormick, and being at the right hand of test chefs, gives me a first look at what might be new trends next year. Knowing how to predict trends in the foodservice industry is an amazing skill to have, and I now feel even better equipped for a future career in food.

As for my more immediate future, check back to see what other exciting things are ahead for me here at McCormick!

By Julia Spondike

Julia Spondike

Julia Spondike

Using all the knowledge I have obtained by going to the CIA and working in the industry, I hope to one day change the culinary world in a new and innovative way. When I achieve the title of “Chef,” I anticipate helping other culinarians and chefs by teaching and mentoring them, as well as hopefully learning something in return from those with different experiences.

Attending CIA was my dream, and now I know I can make a difference in foodservice through my education and externship. I hope to share my life and journeys with the people I encounter, encouraging young culinarians to strive for their dreams like I did mine.
Julia Spondike