There are great things cooking in the Caroline Culinary Arts!

Caroline Culinary Arts encompasses the work of three organizations dedicated to creating workforce opportunities and supporting small businesses and family farms: Chesapeake Culinary Center, Shore Gourmet, and Caroline County Public Schools. The Caroline Schoolhouse, owned by the Town of Denton, is home to it all.


Chesapeake Culinary Center was established in 2004 with the mission of building a workforce that supports the Eastern Shore’s tourism industry and, by extension, its agriculture and seafood industries. We provide students and adults with real-world, hands-on training in all aspects of hospitality and restaurant service. Students learn food safety, guest service, cooking, ordering and logistics, and the business and technology of the food service industry. Participants develop these skills and build their resumes, preparing them for full-time careers in the industry.

In addition, Chesapeake Culinary center provides a community kitchen and incubator services for small food-based businesses. These resources help entrepreneurs and family farms generate new revenue streams. Without this diversification, many small farms would struggle to stay afloat.

As we’ve grown, we’ve been able to engage more members of the community. We now see our overarching mission as creating more economically independent families on the Eastern Shore. We help families learn how to meal plan, budget, and prepare healthy meals. We teach children proper table etiquette and the importance of sharing family meals. We’ve also partnered with Farming4Hunger to bring their addiction prevention and educational programs to the Eastern Shore.

We are largely self-sustaining through the catering revenue we generate. However, we pursue grants and donations for capital projects and special programs. If you’re excited about the work we’re doing, you can help! Donations are tax deductible and a great investment in your local community!

David Murray
Assistant Food Service Operations Manager


Shore Gourmet is a public eatery and retail shop housed within the Caroline Schoolhouse in Denton, Maryland. Our menu includes breakfast, lunch, and Wednesday Dinners freshly prepared and sourced from local farmers and producers. Carry-out orders can be placed through our website or by calling 410.479.2452. We offer limited seating for dining-in.

Shore Gourmet also offers a retail shop featuring specialty foods and gift items from Maryland vendors. Retail items change frequently, so there is always something new to try! Check out our list of vendors below.

Shore Gourmet is a food-based 501(c)6 corporation with a mission of promoting and sustaining value-added agricultural businesses on Maryland’s Eastern Shore. We provide focused assistance to start, grow, and diversify regional value-added products and brands. We also provide educational and training opportunities to students and adults interested in culinary careers. Trainees learn customer service and “fast casual” food production. This is an important part of our broader effort to build a strong workforce to support our local hospitality industry. You can help support our mission by ordering online, shopping in the store, or making a donation!

Rebecca Mullins
Shore Gourmet Manager


Caroline County Public Schools offers a Culinary Arts education program through the Caroline Career and Technology Center (CCTC). Students participate in both rigorous classroom and practicum learning that prepares them to either enter the workforce directly after high school, or go on for additional education and training. Classes are taught at The Caroline Schoolhouse. In addition, students are offered the opportunity to gain real-world experience by working for Chesapeake Culinary Center and/or internship placement with local businesses.

The CCPS food services staff also provides catering services for CCPS functions. This approach saves money by leveraging the schools’ resources, facilities, and talented staff. Occasionally, students in the culinary arts program are able to gain real-world experience by helping with CCPS catering.

CCPS Catering is available to school system employees only, and may only be used for school-related meetings and events. CCPS staff members may login to view the catering menu and additional information.

Samantha Figueroa
Food Operations Manager CCPS


Caroline Schoolhouse is the Eastern Shore’s hub for culinary workforce development and food-based entrepreneurship. The Schoolhouse is an historic building with strong ties to many people in the Caroline County community. The building was constructed in 1901 and originally served as Caroline High School. In later years, it was a daycare center. By the mid-1980’s, the building was no longer in use and it fell into severe disrepair.

Denton Development Corporation acquired the building in 2004 and the structure was stabilized in 2006. With the help of a Community Development Block Grant, this beautiful building was fully restored and is once again a thriving centerpiece of the community.

Today, the Caroline County Board of Education leases The Caroline Schoolhouse from the Town of Denton.

Maintaining such a large, historic building is always a challenge. You can support the mission of the many wonderful programs operating within Caroline Schoolhouse by donating to our capital fund. We also have room naming opportunities available. Your investment will help preserve this important resource for many years to come.

Amanda “Beth” Brewster
Executive Director, Chesapeake Culinary Center