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Coastal Bend Restaurant Week kicks-off with luncheon touting talent and tasty Japanese-inspired meal prepared by DMC Culinary Arts students

CBRW 2023 runs Sept. 22 through Oct. 1 to build patronage during 10-day gastronomic adventure featuring special menus offered by participating restaurants

Article by Melinda Eddleman

Del Mar College (DMC) students with the Hospitality & Culinary Institute on the Oso Creek Campus are learning their craft by creating some of the most delectable dishes every week in class. On Sept. 21, they demonstrated what they’ve learned by preparing a Japanese-inspired buffet meal for invited guests as part of the kick-off of the third annual Coastal Bend Restaurant Week (CBRW) scheduled Sept. 22 through Oct. 1 at participating Corpus Christi restaurants.

The fall RSTO 2405 Food Production and Services class prepared and served the following menu: Chicken Yakitori, which is skewered and grilled chicken marinated in soy sauce, mirin and sake; Pork Katsu, a pork cutlet breaded in panko bread crumbs; Potato Mochi, which is mashed potatoes and mozzarella cheese rolled and fried; Soba Noodles made with buckwheat noodles, soy sauce and hoisin; Stir Fried Vegetables that combines carrots, broccoli, cauliflower, zucchini and mushrooms; Honey Garlic Green Beans; Japanese Milk Bread; Matcha-Strawberry Cake; and  a full salad bar featuring Edamame SaladSweet Sesame Vinaigrette  and Miso Soup.


Del Mar College’s role with kicking-off Coastal Bend Restaurant Week is an opportunity to showcase the talents of our future hospitality and culinary arts professionals training right here in South Texas. The College and our programs are very supportive in calling attention to one of the industries that supports our local economy, and we want Coastal bend residents to take advantage of some of the best dining experiences offered by local restaurants, many of which include and are owned by DMC Culinary Arts alumni.

Dr. Charles “Chip” Campbell, Jr., Chair of the Business Administration and Entrepreneurship Department

As part of remarks during the kick-off, CBRW founder Mirza Mirely announced the start of the event and noted the release of participating restaurants and specially-developed menus offered during the 10-day gastronomic adventure meant to tantalize the taste buds of area diners.

Coastal Bend Restaurant Week is a wonderful opportunity to celebrate the culinary diversity and excellence of the region, and it’s a chance for diners to show their love and appreciation for the local restaurants that make our city so special. The next 10 days is a great time to experience the best of Corpus Christi and find amazing deals and delicious dishes at participating restaurants.

Mirza Mirely, Coastal Bend Restaurant Week Founder

To learn more about where diners can experience the culinary creativeness that South Texas has to offer as part of the 2023 CBRW event, visit coastalbendrestaurantweek.com.

Among current DMC students who assisted with the preparation of the meal for the Sept. 21  CBRW kick-off celebration is 27-year-old Culinary Arts major Joseph Lemus, who served as the student manager for the day of the Teaching Restaurant.

Formerly in the military for six years, Lemus’ inspiration to enter the culinary arts profession comes in part from his mother.

My mom is a pastry chef, and I have always aspired to be as creative and as talented as her ever since I was a kid. I saw what my mom was able to make with all these different ingredients coming together to make something delicious and unique, creating something all her own with knowledge accumulated over years of experience and all shown on a single plate. This just seemed so exciting to me. In short, I’ve been cooking ever since I was old enough to pick up a wooden spoon.

Joseph Lemis, DMC Culinary Arts major

Before pursing his current training, Lemus knew he wanted to earn a degree, even trying majoring in physical therapist assistant before changing his major to culinary arts with encouragement from his fiancé.

“I’ve never looked back,” he added.

Also working the event was classmate and Hospitality Management major Ashlyn Martin, who currently works at Snoopy’s Pier and interned during the summer at the U.S.S. Lexington Museum while taking courses.

The 24-year-old has worked in the hospitality industry for about seven years but admitted that while she’s required to take some culinary arts classes as part of her degree plan, she doesn’t plan to work in the restaurant industry directly.

“My dream job is to work as an event planner at an upscale hotel. However, the training I’m receiving in the kitchen and in this class will help me be a more well-rounded employee,” she said.

As the only institute of its kind in the region, Del Mar College’s Hospitality & Culinary Institute is supporting Coastal Bend Restaurant Week as part of its mission to educate and train students for careers in the food and hospitality sector. The institute, which is accredited as Exemplary by the American Culinary Federation Education Foundation, offers certificates and associates degrees in culinary arts, baking & pastry and hospitality management.

To learn more about the programs offered by the Hospitality & Culinary Institute, visit www.delmar.edu or call the Business Administration and Entrepreneurship Department at 361-698-1372.



About Del Mar College

Del Mar College empowers students to achieve their dreams. We offer quality programs, individual attention, outstanding instruction through faculty with real-world experience and affordable costs to credit and noncredit students in Corpus Christi and the South Texas Coastal Bend area. Nationally recognized while locally focused, we’re ranked in the top two percent of community colleges in the country granting associate degrees to Hispanic students (Community College Week). Del Mar College focuses on offering our students programs that match current or emerging career opportunities. Whether students are interested in the fine arts, sciences, business, occupational or technical areas, students get the education they need for the future they want at Del Mar College.