Thursday, February 19, 2009

New Napa Valley classes for food lovers

After touring one of the world’s premier wine and food regions—the Napa Valley—you might be inspired to burnish your own food and wine knowledge. Now you can learn where tomorrow's top chefs are enrolled: at a grandly beautiful campus in St. Helena, in the heart of the valley.

It’s a first for the Culinary Institute of America (CIA) at Greystone— weekend classes for us everyday food lovers (versus the professionals they already train). Saturdays at the CIA offers a wide array of hands-on cooking and wine exploration classes for Napa Valley visitors with no prior professional training. Each of the two-hour classes is taught by the same expert faculty that has made the CIA the world's premier culinary college—and costs only $75 per person.

Want to learn Hot Latin Cooking or Street Foods of the Middle East? Such hands-on cooking classes can take you on a culinary journey inspired by global cuisine. Class sizes are small—12 students—so you get to work one-on-one with the chefs of the CIA.

For wine lovers, Saturdays at the CIA wine exploration classes bring you into the state-of-the-art Rudd Center for Professional Wine Studies. Instructors guide you in tasting various grape varieties and exploring the world's wine regions. Of course, you'll get all kinds of helpful tips on tasting, buying, and serving wine. You won't emerge as a full-fledged sommalier, but maybe your friends and family will ask you to be the guide on your next wine tasting trip. 

Tip: All Saturdays at the CIA participants get a 10% discount on any purchases from the college's Spice Islands Marketplace.
And Saturday students can get more out of their trip by making a lunch or dinner reservation at The Wine Spectator Greystone Restaurant; you'll be seated with classmates and get a pre-fixe menu price.

Details: Get a schedule of all the new food enthusiast courses at Reservations are recommended; 707/ 967-2320.
PHOTO: Courtesy of the Culinary Institute of America at Greystone

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COPYRIGHT Lora Finnegan 2008-2009

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