STD Flea Market Adds Culinary School

SPRINGFIELD, Mo. - Shawn Gott hopes to put a new spin in the culinary experience.

“Things just don't happen overnight, things happen for a reason and we've developed a lot of aspects of the event business into the point where now we can expand," restaurant school owner Shawn Gott says.

Gott is the owner of the restaurant school, a new culinary school going into STD’s new event space.

“You just have to see something through, see it succeed, see it provide,” Gott says.

A demand he foresees in the event business to be successful.

“I see people and they want something different,” Gott says.

One end of the building, still under construction, will include a pair of show kitchens, an open air kitchen where guests can watch their cooks create dishes and a dining space.

”A lot of places don't have that and we're trying to capitalize on that, set ourselves apart that way,” Gott says.

Gott says the room will be a culinary video shoot for a food competition TV show called “Show Me Chefs,” a partnership through Missouri State.

“It's becoming actual entertainment and a part of our events rather than just a plain buffet line that people go through get their food and sit down. Where people are actually cooked for and given their food they want and actually have interaction with the chefs,” Gott says.

Gott says the school will teach up to 16 students at a time.

“When you give them opportunity, they take advantage of it, man that's a rewarding feeling,” Gott says.

Giving students a taste of the restaurant industry.

”You know life is just not about money, it's about opportunities that you can help be around other people,” Gott says.

“You have to have it. If you just don't know, you just can't dream of things. You need to know what you need to do.”

Angelo Wannithantri is the Executive Chef of the school. He says it's more than just cooking.

“It's how to get people involved, how to get people into your place, how to be clean, how to have a clean restaurant,” Wannithantri says.

Owners say they will serve lunch to the public three days a week.

“It's different than what people are used to and I think it's going to be a little bit shocking,” Gott says.

At the end of the semester if students make sales and keep costs down, they will be able to earn back their tuition.

“You can win, you can succeed but you have to start somewhere and you have to build it within yourself,” Gott says.


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