Hutong cuisine Cooking School (Beijing Cooking School)

Hutong cuisine Cooking School (Beijing Cooking School)

Hutong cuisine Cooking School (Beijing Cooking School)
5
Lessons & Workshops • Cooking Classes
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Book class: Please go to our schedule page, you can see our curriculum arrangement and please choose which class you would like to join. 8:45 am - 9:15am: Condiments class 9:15 am - 10:30 pm Market tour 10:30 am - 1:30pm Cooking class: A trip to China wouldn't be complete without exploring its cuisine. Deepen your experience by learning how to cook authentic local dishes, then sit down to enjoy them with your host. 6:30PM - 9:30PM The Chef's Table (Dinner) If you come to China this gourmet paradise, do not forget to explore its food culture.the best way to do that is by getting up close to the people who cook it. Book yourself into a Chef’s Kitchen dinner to watch Chef Chao as he prepares a classic Chinese dinner. You’ll pick up some important Chinese cooking techniques, learn more about the country and its food culture, and then, finally, enjoy the delicious food together - all in a private traditional Peking courtyard house setting.
Suggested duration
More than 3 hours
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  • Dongsi • 5 min walk
  • Dengshikou • 7 min walk
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Detailed Reviews: Reviews order informed by descriptiveness of user-identified themes such as cleanliness, atmosphere, general tips and location information.
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5.0
176 reviews
Excellent
153
Very good
16
Average
4
Poor
2
Terrible
1

Maya M
3 contributions
May 2021
I had a great time with Chef Chao. I was the only student for his class (I got to pick the menu - Cantonese food) and he was extremely accommodating to my schedule. It's been a rough year because of Covid so I was extremely fortunate that he was still available to teach cooking classes (especially with one student!)

Very helpful, friendly and answered all my questions on everything and I loved the location where his kitchen is (i took a stroll before my class: peaceful and beautiful)

Would highly recommend taking a class with him and having a great late morning/lunch meal with him! You will learn a lot!
Written May 12, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Katie M
Seattle, WA34 contributions
I found out about Chunyi Zhou's "hutong cuisine" cooking class on TripAdvisor and I'm so glad we took an afternoon to attend one. It is truly an "off the beaten path" experience and one we won't forget.

Chunyi is VERY nice, funny and accomodating. Her English is great. Her "hutong" is a great setting for the class, and made the experience so authentically Chinese. She has a cute dog she calls "Dodo" who is friendly with class members.

We booked a Tuesday class which included recipes for Kung Pao Chicken, Stir Fry Chicken with vegetables, steamed fish, and a ginger custard. WOW... this food was amazing! Definitely way better than American Chinese takeout. She explains everything so easily and I'll definitely be using her tips in my home cooking.

The class is also a great deal, about $30 USD. The class was a mix of study abroad students, expat wives and travelers... about 6 of us total.

After the class make sure you walk around the hutong area, it is so charming. Don't miss Nanluoguxiang Road with it's trendy young shops!
Written April 7, 2010
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

lanikai7777
San Francisco, CA3 contributions
Oct 2017 • Solo
Most people drop in for just one or a few classes and learn a lot that way. In my case, I exhaustively researched cooking classes all over China that are available to tourists. I booked this one because it is definitely the most authentic. It surpassed all expectations, but what really surprised me was how much Chef Zhou is so friendly and FUN!!! Highly recommended.

I was joined by some professional chefs, but mostly by amateur cooks like me with all levels of cooking skills and backgrounds.

We started with a "condiments" class to better understand the different types of soy sauces, vinegars, and other important foundational ingredients.

Then, each day there was a market tour to buy the ingredients we needed to cook that day, and we saw how much value real Chinese cooking puts on fresh ingredients. Very much like the best French and Italian cooking, but even better -- all the fish and seafood were still living and swimming briskly in *clean* tanks (not the zombie fish like we so often see in Canada and the USA). In France it's possible to buy chickens killed the same day; but in China, this is normal -- in some places it's even possible to have them killed in front of you. This may bother the squeamish, but if you're going to eat an animal then it's good to understand that it is in fact being killed for you. Blinders off!

We cooked food from Sichuan, Canton (Guangdong), Hunan, and Beijing. Sichuan food included classics like Mapo Doufu (Mapo Tofu), Dan Dan Mian (Dan Dan Noodles), and Gongbao Chicken (Kung Pao Chicken). But I also learned how to make Lanzhou hand-pulled noodles, dumplings, dim sum, and many dishes that I didn't know about before the class.

Of course we learned the basics, because it would take years to master even one of the eight cuisines of China. But by taking the class I was able to learn how to use the Chinese knife (cleaver) to cut properly and quickly and learned how to season and use a wok correctly. There are also intangibles like the feeling and sensibility for Chinese cooking that come only from being there in person and learning directly from an expert chef.

The school is in a charmingly unpolished 200+ year old Ming dynasty hutong courtyard in central Beijing (less than 1 mile East of the Forbidden City). Getting there is easy: 10-15 walk from Wangfujing, 5 minute walk from Dongsi metro station (Lines 5 and 6).

I hope this helps others considering cooking classes in China. I learned so much from this course, and this is my humble way of giving back. :-)
Written October 16, 2017
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

rollerbagger
Austin, TX21 contributions
I was excited about this class after reading the reviews on Tripadvisor and really wanted to like it, but I have to tell fellow travelers what to expect. Bottom line: I would advise my own friends against taking the class and to find another one. You should be able to find a class that gives you more information and background about what you're cooking, techniques, ratios of ingredients in the sauces, and not just following a recipe and getting barked at while you do it. Read on if you want more details:

Let's start with the good points. I booked through Hias Gourmet - making the booking and getting there was not a problem. The directions were very clear. The setting is in a traditional hutong courtyard home which is neat, and the recipes (we did stir-fry and braising ones) were actually quite good. The classes were very hands-on, so you actually made and ate the dishes for lunch.

And now for the bad points: I've taken a lot of classes throughout my travels (southeast Asia, south america, U.S.) and it really comes down to how the instructor teaches and interacts on a human-to-human level. This instructor did not do that. She barked orders at and was quite brusque with students (e.g. the feeling you get when you're told - you're doing it all wrong dummy!), spent a lot of time looking at her own recipes as if she didn't know them (seriously!?), did not explain how you got different tastes from different combinations of sauces, and wasn't even present in the kitchen when I was cooking a dish. HOW, I ask, are we supposed to learn if you're too busy eating in the other room? Fortunately, I speak Mandarin so I was able to communicate with her assistant, who by the way, was constantly being scolded and treated like a young child. You didn't have to speak Mandarin to know that.

Aside from the instructor above, the prep room/dining room was small (a bit tight with 6 people), it was really cold (it's October and the heat isn't on yet), and the kitchen was small so hard to see what was going on. All of this wouldn't have mattered though if we were really learning from the teacher.

So, go to this class at your own risk. Maybe the instructor had an off day, but something tells me she didn't. Fortunately, it wasn't terribly expensive, but of course, that depends on your budget.

-Tony
http://www.rollerbagger.com
Written October 19, 2010
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Maturin3
Altea, Spain80 contributions
Mar 2016
A professional set up in a Hutong near Dongsi metro station. Chow, the chef, has good English and is well skilled in both cooking and teaching.

As a small group (3), we visit a local food market where we brought the necessary produce for the recipes of the day. Back to the hutong, where we were given our own stations to prep and cook the recipes so clearly demonstrated.

We did the following meals: Gung Po Chicken, fried green beans, beer duck and a tofu dish. All were great - tasty and definitely to be reproduced back home.
Written April 3, 2016
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

1kMileageRunner
San Francisco, CA20 contributions
Feb 2014 • Friends
We had Chunyi, newly back from her monthlong Spring Festival break. She is a patient and gracious host and teacher. We did the market tour and Beijing cuisine 1 class. I learned to cook fairly good Chinese cuisine from my parents, and I still learned a lot - the secrets of which soy sauce, vinegar, and wine to use (and how to use them), tricks of handling a cleaver, and the use of caramelization in cooking (not just for desserts). We like doing cooking classes when we travel internationally, but this is the first one that I know I can use at home.

A couple of tips:
1) COME HUNGRY. I am sitting here extremely postprandial and don't feel like I can eat for a couple of days. You will taste Chunyi's demo and then eat all of what you cooked. It's a considerable amount.
2) BRING CASH as payment. Chunyi was extremely gracious that we didn't come with enough cash, and knew the 3 closest ATMs, but I felt bad at having to have her wait while I ran out to get money.
3) If you do the market tour in the winter, WEAR THICK SOCKS. Our feet were freezing!
Written February 11, 2014
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

tri1035
Riverside, California15 contributions
Sep 2019 • Friends
I am an expat in Thailand and had two friends visiting from the US. The introduction in the market was a great way to learn how the Thai shop, what the different herbs and spices are. The cooking class was amazing and instruction was given clearly and fun. I highly recommended this place for cleanliness also.

I have been to other schools
Written September 26, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

John M
1 contribution
Nov 2017 • Solo
I travel to Beijing once or twice every year for work and I always carve out a day for Chao's cooking class. Not being a native Chinese speaker, I have struggled to find a place to learn to cook authentic chinese dishes from all over the country and this is the spot! So far I have done the hand pulled noodle class, the Dim Sum, and also the Hunan class . Chao has always been friendly and you can see his enthusiasm. The only downside is that you won't appreciate the standard Western "chinese" takeout after ;) The stuff you make here is way better. I also recommend the market tour which is an interesting look at how fresh the produce and meat is from the local market. And the chef's dinner is a cool alternative to a restaurant because there's plenty of beer and his little dog toto might be waiting at your footstep for any food to fall haha. It's in a pretty posh area in Dongsi a 5 minute walk from the subway so there's some cool shops and coffee spots around. You may also meet others taking the class from other parts of the world- I've had some great conversations over food for sure.
Written November 18, 2017
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

jra3
Wisconsin770 contributions
Mar 2017 • Solo
I'm having a hard time reviewing this, as I booked and paid for a a specific class, confirmed several days before, and when I arrived it was something totally different. So if you can accept some ambiguity, go for it.

The class I did attend was well done. We made three Cantonese dishes and observed chef make a 4th. The Cantonese dishes were simple and very tasty.

If you book, follow the map directions closely and you'll have no problem finding this place.
Written March 3, 2017
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

sydneypinlover
Cherrybrook, Australia39 contributions
Apr 2015
My husband and I registered for the Market Tour and Sichuan 1 cooking class in April 2015 while we were in Beijing. The class included:
9am-10:30am Market tour
10:30am-2:30pm
Sichuan 1:
1 Gongbao Chicken
2 Beer duck
3 Fried green bean with chili and Sichuan pepper
4 Mapo doufu
Rate: CNY 400 per person
Chunyi of Hutong Cuisine Cooking School was our teacher. She runs this cooking school.
We gathered at the school and had a short walk to the market where we did our shopping for the class. It was very interesting hearing about the various vegetables, meats and other ingredients. Going to the market is a must if you are doing a cooking class.
There were 8 attending the class, all foreigners. There was preparation space and cooking facilities for all of us to be cooking at the same time. Chunyi was an excellent teacher. She demonstrated and explained what she was doing first then allowed us to have a go while she went around assisting. The way the Chinese cook is very different to how we do with our limited time and Chunyi made sure we were all understanding what she was doing.
Of course we got to eat the fruits of our labour at the end and it was spicy and delicious. If we had more time, we would have done another class.
Written February 1, 2016
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

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