The Institute of Culinary Education is a private, for-profit culinary school in California and New York City. The school was founded in 1984 as The French Culinary Institute. The facilities focus on culinary education, with professional kitchens for hands-on cooking and baking classes. However, they also have specialized wine-tasting classrooms.
When the school first opened, it was visited by chef Julia Child, and one of its first graduates was Bobby Flay.
The International Culinary Center (ICC) merged with the Institute of Culinary Education (ICE) in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
As a regionally accredited college, ICE is a small institution with an enrollment of 242 undergraduate students. However, as a wine school, it is one of the largest. Their Career Sommelier Program is a 10-week wine course taught by a Master Sommelier (ICE has 11 Master Sommeliers on staff). It is the only program approved by the Court of Master Sommeliers Americas. Students learn how to taste and evaluate approximately 300 wines worldwide. Students can also attend classes on viticulture and enology.
When I lived in Manhattan, I was friends with several professors at ICC. who worked on developing this program. It was clear to me that these were committed and brilliant minds at work. This is the type of program that should be the core of wine education. It’s a shame that their connection to the Court of Master Sommeliers has tainted their legacy.