Foodies everywhere will enjoy these cooking classes that will give them recipes to incorporate into their meals once they’re back home—from Indonesian fare to chocolate-making techniques in Saint Lucia.
Those who have a passion for Indonesian cuisine, can try Jiimbaran Bay’s Cooking Academy, which opened earlier this month at the Four Seasons Resort Bali.
“Four Seasons is the only resort on the island to feature its own stand-alone cooking school. We wanted to go beyond offering casual lessons in the kitchen to providing a full professional-quality training facility. Our classes are designed for novice and experienced cooks alike—creating a focused learning environment for a maximum of 10 students per session,” says Michael Branham, general manager. “Many of the recipes are based on old family traditions. Now our guests can take these recipes home and share these authentic dishes with their own family and friends.”
The Jimbaran Bay Cooking Academy features an herb garden, a kitchen equipped with state-of-the-art appliances, and a black granite preparation unit with induction hot plates. Students can sample what they’ve created at the communal dining table or outdoors in the shaded courtyard. Graduates will receive an official certificate of achievement, and copies of the recipes in a hand-drawn booklet. Classes are only taught in English and led by chef Anak Agung Kristya Yudha, a Balinese native. These half-day sessions teach guests to prepare a 5-course meal according to traditional menus representing Bali, Java, Nusa, Tenggara, Sulawesi, and Sumatra. Dishes include bebek betutu, which is roasted duck wrapped in a banana leaf; and for dessert es doger—coconut, tapioca pearls, and cassava with sweet milk. Speaking of desserts, once a week the school offers a kids’ pastry class, which focuses on Indonesian desserts. Guests can also take an optional market tour at 8 a.m. to see how locals shop for fresh seafood. Six menus rotate on a daily basis, seven days per week, allowing guests to experience more than one cooking lesson if they’d like. The cooking classes start at $77 pp and room rates start at $649 for a 1-Bedroom Villa per night. For more information, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org or visit fourseasons.com/jimbaranbay.
In Australia, the Lake House in Daylesford is considered one of Australia’s best restaurants, and was practicing farm-to-table fare before it became trendy. The resort, which is located 90 minutes from Melbourne, is celebrating its 30th anniversary by launching The Cooking School at Lake House.
Leading the program is the property’s executive chef and managing director, Alla Wolf-Tasker, who is credited for starting the regional culinary tourism movement in Australia. Under her leadership, Lake House has been awarded many awards, including Gourmet Traveller’s 2014 Hotel Guide as Australia’s Best Regional Hotel. “Food, cooking and provenance have always played a strong part in our family home,” says Wolf-Tasker. “It’s extremely satisfying to see how our guests’ fascinations have grown from wanting to see what goes on in the kitchen to asking if they can get their hands dirty alongside us.”
The Cooking School at Lake House gives guests an opportunity to engage with chefs, cooks, producers and farmers. Classes are held in the state-of-the-art demonstration kitchen on the 6-acre property, where participants enjoy demonstrations and hands-on instruction in contemporary cooking techniques. Classes showcase produce from local suppliers and Lake House’s own Kitchen Garden, which includes herbs and edible flowers, and an orchard featuring olives, crab-apple, stone fruits, apple, quince, and medlar. Guests can also sign up for producer experiences such as bee keeping, foraging, fly fishing, and fermentation or butchery with local farmers.
The next cooking school session is the Spring Masterclass held Oct. 19 from 9:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. starting at $195 pp, which includes all demonstrations, recipes, tastings, tea and coffee, baguette lunch, and wine. The Summer Cooking Class held on Dec. 7 from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. starting at $295 pp, includes a 3-hour cooking session, sit-down lunch of prepared dishes, wine, and a folder of recipes. On Feb. 22 a Summer Masterclass will be held from 9:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. starting at $195 pp. Room rates start at $906 per night for a w-night minimum stay. Guests can indulge in all the savory treats the property has to offer with the Gourmet Escape—Room Lodge package, priced at $640 per night, which includes accommodations for two nights, a 3-course a la carte dinner in Lake House’s restaurant on the first night, a degustation dinner with matched wines on the second night, and daily country style buffet breakfast. For more information, visit lakehouse.com.au.
For those with a sweet tooth, Jade Mountain in Saint Lucia offers guests the chance to make their own chocolate in the new chocolate laboratory. The resort is the island’s only bean-to-bar organic, single estate boutique chocolate maker with over 1,000 cocoa trees on the resort estate, including the organic farm, Emerald’s, in the Soufriere Hills.
“For the past three years, Jade Mountain has hand-crafted Emerald Estate Chocolate for the enjoyment of their guests, and with the opening of its chocolate laboratory, guests are now able to not only taste but participate in the making of the chocolate,” says Karolin Troubetzkoy, the property’s owner.
Guests of Jade Mountain and the sister property, Anse Chastanet, can choose from chocolate-infused activities such as chocolate sensory tastings, educational estate trips and truffle making classes. They will also be able to indulge in chocolate-inspired dishes, cocktails, and body treatments in the resort’s restaurants, bars and spa.
The Discover Chocolate package gives guests everything in the Chocolate Sensory Tasting tour, which includes tasting the cocoa bean and sampling everything in-between. They will also sample homemade truffles and a variety of Emerald Estate Organic Chocolate bars (tours are Tuesdays 10:00 a.m.-10:30 a.m and complimentary to resort guests). In addition to the aforementioned, guests will participate in the making of chocolate in the Chocolate Lab, learn the basic techniques of making and tempering chocolate, creating their own fudge, and making a personalized chocolate bar. This tour is $45 pp (minimum two people and maximum six) held Tuesdays from 10:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. The 2-hour Emerald Estate Tree to Bar Tour is $75 pp and runs Mondays from 9:00 a.m. to 11 a.m. Hotel rates start at $1,025 dbl at Jade, and $355 at Anse Chastanet. For more information, call (800) 223-1108 or visit ansechastanet.com