MARQUETTE, Mich. (WJMN) – There’s something good cooking at Northern Michigan University’s Teaching Kitchen. This new facility is the home to the newly created Hospitality Leadership Program. According to Associate Professor Loganne Glendening, a good restaurant is so much more than just good food.

“So, we can do the plates right every single time,” said Glendening. “But if the mentality isn’t there, from our servers from our management team, and so forth, to create that great environment, we can lose that really quickly.”

Professor Glendening points to the psychology of hospitality, where food and ambiance are just a small component of what a truly remarkable dining experience is.

“How it ecology component comes in for us,” said Glendening. “It’s truly about customer service experiences. How do you focus on being able to provide something that is an intimate relationship with your guests, to encourage them to return again and again, and not just for that wonderful consistent menu that you provide, but for the hospitality for the people connection, what’s involved as well?”

With the popularity of cooking shows and tv networks devoted solely to culinary excellence, Loganne feels that the glitz and glamour of working in a food-related industry are somewhat of a stereotype.

“I think cable TV is probably a little bit of a lie most of the time, and kind of creates a fantasy world for individuals who are interested in this.”

Northern’s Teaching kitchen, which is in search of an official name is located in the Northern center, it has an open-concept kitchen, and a non-alcoholic bar is offering a price fix menu that was completely designed by students. Head Chef and student, Orion Ingmire are very proud of the menu he and his fellow students have created.

“I’m very proud of the menu,” said Ingmire. “I mean, I really, really think that anybody who comes here regardless of dietary restrictions can find something that they’re going to really enjoy.”

Professor Glendening suggests making reservations as soon as possible as space is limited and dates are filling up fast. The NMU Teaching Kitchen restaurant will be seating guests until April 19th. The price for a four-course meal is $45.00. For more information, including dining hours, menu options, directions and seating times go to NMU’s hospitality Leadership page.