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Media Release: Perfezione! VCC partners with Italian culinary school ALMA

Posted on November 29, 2022

Risotto competition winner with ALMA and VCC
Risotto competition winner, Kalvin Frid with ALMA General Manager Andrea Sinigaglia (centre), and VCC Dean of School of Hospitality, Food Studies, and Business, Dennis Innes.


VANCOUVER, November 29, 2022 – When one thinks of the best cuisines in the world, Italian is often at the top of many people’s list. Thanks to a new partnership between Vancouver Community College (VCC) and ALMA – The School of Italian Culinary Arts, budding chefs in VCC’s Culinary Arts program will have more opportunities to learn the art of Italian cuisine.

On November 25, a memorandum of understanding was signed between ALMA and VCC establishing a relationship of cooperation aimed at promoting the education and culture of Italian cuisine.

“In ALMA's vocation, ever since its creation, there has always been the desire and need to bring true Italian cuisine to the world, which is original, i.e. linked to a culture, and contemporary, i.e. linked to current events,” says Andrea Sinigaglia, General Manager, ALMA – The School of Italian Culinary Arts. “To celebrate such an important occasion, we are proud to have reached a new prestigious partner such as Vancouver Community College. This new partnership outlines the possibility of shared values of the beauty and history of authentic food Italian heritage is known for.”

The partnership signing also coincided with a competition on ''How to make a perfect Italian risotto'' where six students from VCC’s Culinary Arts program competed. Beginning with a video demonstration from ALMA ambassador, Chef Carlo-Maria Ricci, the students then had one hour to reproduce the beloved Italian rice dish.

Kalvin Frid, a student in VCC’s Professional Cook 2 certificate program, emerged as the winner with a risotto that impressed the judges with his execution and attention to detail.

“On behalf of all of us at VCC, a hearty congratulations to Kalvin for winning today’s risotto competition,” says VCC’s Dennis Innes. “I would also like to express my gratitude to Andrea and the entire team at ALMA for their partnership. VCC’s culinary alumni have gone on to compete in national and international culinary competitions, open their own restaurants, and some have been recently recognized by the Michelin Guide in Vancouver. Partnering with a world-leading educational institution such as ALMA will continue VCC’s tradition of providing culinary training excellence for students that charts a course for a promising future in the food industry.”

As the winner, Kalvin receives a scholarship to attend ALMA’s Italian Culinary Program Unit II program, valued at 15000 EUR ($20,000 CDN).

“I hope to work in high-end restaurants once I complete my program and this experience will help me get one step closer,” says Kalvin. “Nothing really excites me more than learning and learning Italian food in Italy is an amazing opportunity. I'm incredibly grateful.”

The competition was judged by ALMA’s Andrea Sinigaglia; VCC's Dennis Innes; Pino Posteraro, Cioppino’s chef-owner; Illaria Baldan, Executive Director, Italian Chamber of Commerce in Canada West (ICCBC); Laura Sanfilippo, Education Officer, Consulate General of Italy in Vancouver; and Tannis Morgan, VCC Associate Vice President, Academic Innovation.

The Italian Chamber of Commerce in Canada West congratulates its partner VCC and ALMA for this important milestone towards the strengthening of ties between Italy and Western Canada,” adds ICCBC's Ilaria Baldan. “This MOU brings infinite opportunities for culinary exchanges, training, and continuing education. We look forward to seeing more 'made in Italy' in Vancouver and to collaborating with them on exciting new projects.”


About VCC

Vancouver Community College (VCC) has been inspiring students to reach their career and educational goals for over 55 years, offering post-secondary training in over 140 programs including bachelor’s degrees, diplomas, certificates, and apprenticeships. With two campuses located Downtown and in East Vancouver, students receive hands-on instruction in culinary arts, business, design, health sciences, hospitality management, transportation trades, music, and more. Learn more at

About ALMA

ALMA - The School of Italian Culinary Arts is recognized as the world’s leading educational and training centre for the Italian food and beverage and hospitality sectors at an international level. ALMA trains cooks, pastry chefs, bakery chefs, sommeliers, professional waiting staff, restaurant managers, pizza chefs, pasta chefs and gelato artisans. ALMA is based in the heart of the Food Valley, in the beautiful Ducal Palace of Colorno: a few kilometres from Parma, proclaimed a UNESCO Creative City of Gastronomy in 2015, in recognition of its heritage of PDO and PGI delicacies and culinary specialties.
The Courses and Masters by ALMA are exclusively professional in nature.

The standard of teaching is upheld by a teaching staff composed of leading cooks and pastry chefs, established maître d’s and master sommeliers, as well as the cream of Italian food connoisseurs and highly-qualified experts in nutrition, food hygiene, and the history of food and wine. Moreover, every week the team is joined by a visiting professor, including chefs with one or more Michelin stars, master pastry chefs and F&B managers from large hotel and catering establishments. Unique to ALMA are the tailored courses it runs in Italy and abroad, both for professional training and for corporate team-building activities, ensuring ongoing professional development. It is also outstanding in Italy in terms of the quality of its teaching facilities. For more information:

Media contacts:

Carey Yada Lee
Vancouver Community College
Strategic Communications Specialist
C: 236.833.3640

Giacomo Bullo
ALMA - The School of Italian Culinary Arts
Communications Manager