Schooled in Cuisine
Fairfield schools student-run eateries
Unless you have high-school aged children, you may have never heard of The Falcon’s Nest or Barlow’s Restaurant. Housed at Fairfield Ludlowe and Fairfield Warde high schools, these self-supporting, student-run eateries serve sit-down lunches to faculty and staff, and also cater outside events.
Every year, between 15 and 18 students at each school plan weekly menus, prepare the food, and serve as wait staff, all while learning the restaurant business. “This is the kind of class where they learn so much,” says Mary Ellen O’Connor, Warde Family and Consumer Science (FCS) teacher and operator at Barlow’s. Here, there are specials like salmon burgers and pasta primavera, in addition to the everyday menu that features panini, wraps, and a salad bar. “The students love to be in charge of the main course, and they all love to grill,” O’Connor says.
At The Falcon’s Nest, it’s a similar concept. “We always have one or two soups, salads, a sandwich, and a dessert on the menu,” explains Ludlowe’s Rachel Keleher, FCS teacher and Falcon’s Nest manager. Menus change weekly, but popular items like Mediterranean quinoa and curried cous cous salads appear often. Staff who don’t have time to dine-in can “grab and go.”
Off campus, look for catered events for the Fairfield Public Library, the Fairfield Museum & History Center, and the Bigelow Senior Center.