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Fine dining dish comes to Middletown High School North courtesy of Char Steakhouse’s Chef Phil Deffina


Middletown High School North students were treated to a special dining option for lunch during the week of October 22nd, thanks to an unconventional offering that students wouldn’t expect to find.

A collaboration between Middletown High School North and Whitsons Culinary Group invited Phil Deffina, Char Steakhouse’s corporate chef, who oversaw the preparation and cooking of one new menu option that’s typically offered at the fancy dining restaurant in Red Bank, NJ. Students got the chance to help prepare this one-of-a-kind dish, meat and potatoes, which features braised short rib, potato gnocchi, and garlic cream sauce.

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Chef Phil Deffina of Char Steakhouse helping students at Middletown High School North to prepare “meat and potatoes.”

Not only did some of the students get some hands-on time preparing this 5-star dish, but chef Phil Deffina also provided some insights to how the dish is prepared, the processes behind getting it cooked perfectly, and some history as well with some of the ingredients. It’s not too often you expect to find a fine dining option on the menu during lunch at high school, but students were nonetheless excited about it!

Check out some of the pictures from the behind-the-scenes look during the preparation and cooking class at Middletown High School North, as well as our video above that captured the entire experience.

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