7 Places to Spice Up Your Kitchen Skills with Cooking Classes
Options for cooking classes in the St. Louis area range from grocery stores and specialty food shops to culinary schools. There are a wide variety of courses for any level of expertise (and, thinking ahead to the holidays, many offer gift certificates!). Here are seven options to get you started.
Image courtesy of Kitchen Conservatory.
1. Kitchen Conservatory
Kitchen Conservatory offers a wide variety of themed cooking classes every day of the week. Choose from either: demonstration, where guests snack on foods while the chef demonstrates meal preparation, or hands-on, where each guest follows along on their own and makes a meal themselves. Classes range from date night and girl’s night to holiday themed and the basics of cooking. The instructors hail from all over town with experience in numerous St. Louis restaurants.
Dierbergs releases a new cooking class schedule every two months, with new guest instructors and class themes at the five cooking school locations within the St. Louis area. Guests can learn to cook with the fresh produce of the season, to pair food and drinks, to cook healthier, to sharpen specific skills, to set a beautiful table and much more. Holiday classes and visiting chefs and authors are always on the schedule. Sign up online (or by phone to redeem a gift certificate).
The Schnucks Cooking School, located on the mezzanine level of the Des Peres grocery store, offers a variety of cooking classes for every age and expertise level. The classes are geared towards kids, families or couples (with wine served at most adult-oriented events). The school also offers a popular, hour-long “Learn At Lunch” demonstration class for those who like to make the most of their mid-day breaks.
4. L’École Culinaire
Although L’École Culinaire is a professional culinary school in the Frontenac neighborhood of the St. Louis, it also offers food and beverage classes to the public for a fun learning experience. Both demonstration and hands-on classes are taught by chef instructors. Visit the school’s website for course descriptions and to sign up.
Image courtesy of Bolyard’s Meat & Provisions.
5. Bolyard’s Meat & Provisions
Bolyard’s Meat & Provisions is a family-owned butcher shop selling fresh, local, pasture-raised meat with no hormones or antibiotics. The Maplewood shop hosts a handful of butchering classes every season where butcher and owner Chris Bolyard teaches guests how to break down a half hog by hand. During these two-hour classes, guests can enjoy beer and soda and snack on homemade charcuterie. They will also take home two fresh cuts of meat and a pound of house-made sausage. Call the shop at 314.647.2567 to reserve a spot.
Image courtesy of Niche Food Group.
6. Niche Food Group
Sarah Osborn Blue is the pastry chef of Sardella, Pastaria and Taste of Niche Food Group, the hospitality group owned by James Beard Award-winning chef Gerard Craft. Her pastry class series, titled “Baking with Chef Blue,” is held at the Niche Food Group Commissary Kitchen in the Hi-Pointe neighborhood. Her two-hour, themed classes showcase the most popular desserts served at Niche restaurants as well as seasonal treats (gingerbread houses are on the calendar for December). Buy tickets online here and check the Niche Food Group Facebook page for updates.
Image courtesy of Larder & Cupboard.
7. Larder & Cupboard
Larder & Cupboard is a specialty foods store on Manchester Road, the main drag in Maplewood, offering unique food products from the St. Louis area and around the world. The owners buy directly from producers instead of working with big distributors to find items that are truly one of a kind. Food and beverage classes range from seasonally focused fun to introductory dives into topics like like fermentation to series-based events. The demonstration-format classes last about two hours. Guests leave with a list of new recipes—and usually a few purchases from the shop as well.
Featured image courtesy of L’Ecole Culinaire.