I booked a weekend "Essential Italian" cooking course for my girlfriend and I.
I originally wanted to book another course run by another company, but they cancelled last minute leading me to book at Cucina Caldesi.
The cooking school is just behind the small cafe. It's a converted old garage with lovely tables and atmosphere inside.
In terms of the day, it ran from 10am-4.30pm and there were 13 items to be cooked. Unfortunately, what I did not realise was- you do not make all of them yourself. In fact, you'll be lucky to make 3 of them yourselves. It is more of a group effort to produce the items. A lot of the time you are stood around the dishes seeing how the cook and listening to the chef. This was fine and enjoyable- but I wanted the opportunity to create my own sauce, cut my own lamb and chop my own vegetables. What I did produce, I really enjoyed: a pizza, tiramisu and part of the risotto. But that was it, and so I did leave a little bit disappointed that I didn't learn as much as I wanted to. It felt more like we were sous chefs in a kitchen on specific tables than a proper cookery course day.
The chef was also quite abrupt as mentioned in the review below, but for us it seemed to work fine, and I couldn't complain. The ladies helping out were wonderful.
The food that we cooked tasted amazing, especially the lemon pasta, beef ragu and pizza. We ate in a feast at the end. There were 16 of us in total, which was quite a lot, meaning we were tight for space. We were stood for the first 4 hours, which was really hard on the feet. A few chairs would have made it bearable.
At £160 per person, it is extremely expensive, and I wasn't sure if on a personal level, I got value for money.
Overall, I want to be able to cook more, learn more by doing rather than listening to a speaker- so cut down the dishes and let everyone make their own. It was a fun day, but as I say, could have been improved and should have cost less.
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