Food: The Cooks Who Can't Be Fired

Restaurants of culinary schools move to the head of the class

Few people are brave enough to risk a $3 haircut at the local barber college, and fewer still will opt for cut-rate root-canal work done by a student at a dental-school clinic. But a growing cadre of frugal gourmets from Montpelier to San Francisco is finding that meals in culinary-school restaurants can be very tasty deals indeed. A senior's sauce may need a soupcon of salt, or a nervous freshman waiter may tip over your water goblet, but for the most part, cooking-school eateries provide an interesting ambience and fine cuisine at half the price of the four-star restaurant just up...

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