Leiths Certificate in Food & Wine with CTH

Leiths Introductory Certificate

Gain vital skills for life with this professional qualification from the UK's most prestigious cookery school. Develop core techniques and study the associated theory as you create delicious recipes. You will also master time management, menu planning, safety and hygiene, food presentation and healthy eating as you build a strong foundation in this growing, dynamic industry.

Why St Mary's

Choose St Mary's for a unique opportunity to combine your A Level subjects, with this innovative, practical course, delivered by our dedicated teachers and accredited by Leiths the UK's most prestigious cookery school and the Confederation of Tourism and Hospitality (CTH).

Highlights of this course at St Mary's include:

  • Regular visits and lessons from teachers at Leiths Academy, London
  • Assessments from Leiths professionals - leaders in their field
  • Our International Street Food tasting trip
  • Experience in catering for key St Mary's events
  • Access to Leiths exceptional career connections in the industry

As well as gaining a leading industry qualification, which will set you on course to enter the food and beverage industry, this course is a valuable addition to a UCAS Personal Statement.

Enabling your transition from GCSE

Our teachers will offer guidance on developing your skills over the summer, before joining Sixth Form, alongside key reading.

Throughout the course, you will have access to the support of both our teacher and visiting Leiths professionals. This course involves extended length practical sessions every week, to build on skills gained at GCSE level.

Course overview

This course includes practical skills and theorectical knowledge. It is designed to:

  • Hone in on particular key skills
  • Concentrate on flavour and texture
  • Develop your confidence, creativity and maturity
  • Enhance your employability
  • Improve your time management, organisation and team-work skills

Contents include

  • Diverse recipes and catering skills
  • Time management
  • Menu planning
  • Food safety and hygiene
  • Food presentation
  • Introductory knowledge of wine
  • Healthy eating

On completion you will have a solid practical foundation, as well as an impressive repertoire that will enables you to cook confidently for yourself and for small groups.

Catering skills include

  • Meat preparation recipes
    • Chicken with saffron and lemon
    • Lamb with prunes, chilli, coriander and spices
    • Steaks
    • Roast pheasant and accompaniments
    • Venison and cranberry casserole
  • International cookery
    • Indian and Sri Lankan
    • Middle Eastern
  • Sauces
    • White sauce, Mornay and béchamel
    • Combination sauces, e.g. Tomato sauce, pesto
    • Liaison sauces
    • Pan sauces
  • Fish and shellfish preparation
    • Flat fish preparation - Lemon sole meuniere
    • Soy glazed salmon with hot and crunchy salad
    • Fish pie
    • Shellfish preparation - Moules marinière
  • Puddings
    • Egg whites – Meringues
    • Gelatine – Perry jelly
    • Ice creams – Coffee ice cream
  • Pastries
    • Choux - Chocolate profiteroles, Gougere, Eclairs
    • Shortcrust – Leek and Gruyere, Treacle tart
    • Rough Puff – Eccles cakes
  • Baking
    • Bread – White loaf, Italian bread
    • Melting method - Black sticky gingerbread
    • Rubbing-in method- Scones
    • Traybakes - Brownies
    • Celebration cakes
  • Professional skills
    • Freelance cooking - Buffet party cooking, Dinner party cooking
    • Menu writing
    • Basic costing
  • Wine
    • Introduction to wine tasting
    • Matching food with wine
    • Wine and Spirit Education Trust Level 1 Certificate in Wine

Also covered: Knife skills, presentation, seasoning, egg cooking, stocks, vegetables, canapés, cooking for presents, Christmas cooking, cooking for special diets, healthy eating.


  • Continuous classroom assessment
  • Coursework focusing on menu planning, writing time plans and informal tests
  • 2 ½ hour practical exam covering dishes cooked during the course
  • Theory exam on skills learnt and developed throughout the course

Grade bands for CTH Level 3 UCAS tariff

  • Distinction 80% (UCAS tariff: 36)
  • Merit 60-79% (UCAS tariff: 24)
  • Pass 40-59% (UCAS tariff: 12)
At a glance
  • Accredited by: Leiths School of Food and Wine
  • Perfect preparation for a catering career
  • Continuous classroom assessment
  • Practical exam
  • Written exam on theoretical knowledge
You will enjoy this course if you...
  • You are keen build your skills
  • Are practical and creative
  • Would like to pursue a catering career
  • Enjoy cooking for family and friends

What our teachers say...

"Food is a subject for which I have endless passion and enthusiasm. I have always been practical, active and creative and since the age of 14, I have pursued a career centered around flavour and taste, and the pleasure of food and wine."

"As far as I'm concerned we all know quite enough for our own good: that we should eat less red meat, more fish, more veg and stay off cheap bought junk. End of story." Prue Leith

Knowledge of food and the importance it plays in our every day life is changing everyday, as scientists discover more about its role in health. There are really two reasons to learn to cook well. One is for pleasure – for taste, flavour and social interaction. The second is to halt the downward spiral into expensive and unhealthy pre-prepared food, that we are tempted to rely on because of lack of skill or time.

From Lorraine Pascale and Signe Johansen, to Angela Malik and Florence Knight, a long list of successful chefs, restaurant owners, food-writers, food-stylists and artisan producers began their story with training at Leiths, the UK's most prestigious cookery school.

On completion of your course, you will benefit from access to the Leiths connections, opening up exceptional industry contacts and opportunities. You could continue to study on the Leiths pathway, which progresses to Diploma level, or choose from myriad of more specialised courses in everything from patisserie skills through to food photography.

This exciting industry is full of varied career routes including private and corporate event catering, food styling, recipe development and food journalism. With scope to work all around the world, this is a great qualification for those who would like to travel in the future.

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