A Taste of Westchester

To register please call 914-606-6830 and press option 1

Join us at several of Westchester’s most exciting restaurants for a culinary adventure that will tantalize your taste buds. Each chef will offer a private cooking demonstration, followed by a tasting of the prepared items. Fees include non-alcoholic beverages. New menu items are explored each semester. Menu substitutions may occur when necessary. Demonstrations will begin at the times designated. Sampling fees are payable in CASH only. Call restaurants or visit their linked web sites for directions. No refunds are given for these classes. A one-time per semester registration fee of $3.25 will be added to the final tuition calculation. CE-REST 2000 is the class number for all Taste of Westchester classes.

April

Via Vanti!
2 Kirby Plaza, Mt. Kisco Train Station
914-666-6400,
www.viavanti.com
Sicily Tour: In a lovely space reminiscent of an old black and white movie, set in the old train station, this Italian hot spot’s owner Carla Gambescia will teach us about Sicily as the epicenter of “peasant gourmet.” Utilizing exceptional ingredients transfigured into sensory sensations we’ll explore Sicilian cuisine with some tapas assortiti. We begin our tour with arancini: mini rice balls studded with peas and prosciutto and topped with trapanese (almond) pesto sauce. Next is capunata crostini: roasted aubergine (eggplant), tomatoes, olives, capers, and a “secret ingredient” in a vinegar based sauce. We will next taste panelle, a traditional chickpea fritter served with fresh ricotta cheese, wine poached figs and cracked black pepper. Our pasta course will be beautiful gemelli shaped pasta with roasted eggplants in a light plum tomato sauce, with a hint of cinnamon and Marsala wine, garnished with toasted almonds and parsley. To sweeten our evening, finish with unlimited tastes of New York’s best gelato including all eighteen of their varieties; choose your favorite scoop for dessert. Please note that this class is a discussion on food from the owner and will not have an actual cooking demonstration but will cover education on Italy related to this topic.
1 Tues., Apr. 5, 5:30-7:30 pm, $15 (+ $25 sampling fee in CASH, payable to instructor). #13060

NEW! Bull & Barrel Brewery
988 Route 22, Brewster
845-278-BULL (2855), www.bullandbarrelbrewpub.com
No Bull! Owners Wendy and Rick have created a fun atmosphere that parties every night of the week. As Putnam County’s only micro-brewery and restaurant this place has it all, including a mechanical bull. Take a ride after class if you dare! This hot spot entertains line dancing and kickin’ up your heels but is most well-known for its small batch artisanal craft beers brewed on premise. We will begin with a tour of their brewery and sample some of the current selections. Our chef will instruct us on one of the many house favorites, blue cheese stuffed olives, beer battered and made with their American Wheat beer, served with a tangy and spicy lime wasabi dipping sauce. For an entrée they will be dishing out their #1 selling item: the pulled pork pretzel hero. Included will be a lesson on their smoking process, and how they create fried mac n’ cheese balls. For dessert learn the secrets to the candied bacon bits that top the house-made malted vanilla ice cream drizzled with chocolate bourbon sauce. Wear your cowboy boots and hat and come have a great time!
1 Wed., Apr. 6, 6:00-8:00 pm, $15 (+ $20 sampling fee in CASH, payable to instructor). #13061

L’inizio
698 Saw Mill River Road, Ardsley
914-693-5400, www.liniziony.com
Voted as one of the best new Italian restaurants in Westchester in 2015! Owners Scott and Heather Fratangelo are unstoppable. With Scott in the kitchen and Heather assuming the roles of front of house and pastry chef, the restaurant is in complete harmony. All ingredients are locally sourced, so the menu changes quite often. As it is springtime our chef will be utilizing what is in season. We will begin the evening with a lesson on making a fava bean salad studded with Sprout Creek Madeline cheese filled arancini (stuffed rice balls coated with breadcrumbs, and fried) and seasonal ramps in a light lemon vinaigrette. Fresh pastas and risottos are a specialty of Chef Scott and are featured in the restaurant. He will show us how to make a spring vegetable risotto adorned with braised Orazio Farm rabbit. Heather will astound us with a lesson on her strawberry rhubarb crostata. This class will sell out fast as there is limited space!
1 Mon., Apr. 11, 6:00-8:00 pm, $15 (+ $25 sampling fee in CASH, payable to instructor). #13062

Piccola Trattoria
41 Cedar Street, Dobbs Ferry
914-674-8427, www.piccolany.com
Hands on Demo: Argentinian born Chef Sergio Pennacchio comes from an influential family food background with his paternal side hailing from Sicily and his maternal side from Spain. After many successful years as the owner of Pasta E Pesce in Yonkers, here he has revamped his family business in Dobbs Ferry with a warm and inviting atmosphere. We will start with a lesson on chilled spring vegetable soups in three vegan varieties. Then attendees will help our chef to prepare a whole branzino (Mediterranean fish) including lessons in proper cleaning and seasoning with fresh herbs, lemon, and wine. A lesson on Chef Sergio’s fennel salad will accompany our fish. Learn how to make espresso crème brulee as a superb ending to a wonderful meal. This chef is most approachable and is sure to become a favorite!
1 Tues., Apr. 12, 6:00-8:00 pm, $15 (+ $25 sampling fee in CASH, payable to instructor). #13063

NEW!
The Briarcliff Manor
Antipasti di Napoli Trattoria & Bar
25 Studio Hill Road, Briarcliff Manor
914-502-0080, www.thebriarcliffmanor.com
Spectacular Views: The mansion, overlooking the Hudson River, dates back to the early 1900’s; it was featured in the movie trailer for Gone with the Wind. This spot spent the last 50 years as a French restaurant, until magnificently restored to its original splendor complete with modern flourishes. Proprietor Perry DiNapoli and his kitchen staff will demonstrate the makings of a warm crostini with sautéed broccoli rabe and cannellini beans. Then learn the technique for creating a beautiful presentation of shrimp over linguini pasta with spicy sauce, fra diavolo (Italian for “brother devil”). Our presentation for dessert will be bananas foster complete with a lesson on flambé. For the evening, a special wine chosen to complement our meal will be offered at a special cooking class rate. Come see this spectacular house on the hill.
1 Wed., Apr. 13, 6:00-8:00 pm, $15 (+ $25 sampling fee in CASH, payable to instructor). #13064

Thyme Restaurant
3605 Crompond Road, Yorktown Heights
914-788-8700, www.thymerestaurant.net
Interactive/Gluten Free: See Owner and Chef Tom Costello on any given night preparing your meal in this open kitchen. The restaurant’s menu is predominantly gluten free. He will lead an interactive demonstration where we will help create a meal starting with a velvety cool spring pea soup topped with a house-made crème fraiche. We continue our hands on lesson by preparing red snapper piccata (capers in a beurre blanc sauce), served with potato croquettes and spring fava beans. We will imbibe in a specially selected wine pairing as we cook and dine. Help to prep a spring inspired dessert: deconstructed mini-strawberry rhubarb tarts made entirely gluten free. Always a fun evening, so grab a friend and join us in Chef Tom’s kitchen!
1 Mon., Apr. 18, 6:00-8:00 pm, $15 (+ $25 sampling fee in CASH, payable to instructor). #13065

NEW!
BRRZAAR
Irvington Train Station
7 North Astor Street, Irvington
914-274-8118, www.BRRZAAR.com
Gluten Free/Frozen treat: Owners Michelle and Brian Leddy have created a scrumptious frozen yogurt cafe in the Irvington train station, built back in 1889. In this beautifully renovated space, adorned with tropical colors for a bright and cheery feel, this husband and wife team have created a wonderful place for commuters and patrons of all ages to enjoy their froyo. A lecture on the concept to execution of the shop will start our class. Michelle found yogurt and coffee machines fitting her strict criteria; many of the supplies in the store are completely organic, non GMO and gluten-free. Being gluten-free herself, she takes this task very seriously, insisting “only GF products that taste great be offered.” Vegan marshmallows, organic sprinkles, GF cookie crumbles, and organic chocolate sauce are some of the many toppings offered daily. Learn about some of her unusual toppings not typically found in other froyo spots, such as raw sprouted watermelon seeds. Discover the secret recipe for their house-made GF raw cookie dough (no eggs). Next a lesson on coffee frozen yogurt, using yogurt base and in-house made coffee flavor. We will combine both items for a special treat. A mini-lesson on the French press style of coffee brewed in a Trifecta coffee machine, submerging the grinds while agitating them in hot water, follows. Attendees will all get to enjoy a very special cup o’ Joe!
1 Tues., Apr. 19, 6:00-8:00 pm, $15 (+ $15 sampling fee in CASH, payable to instructor). #13066

Clock Tower Grill
512 Clock Tower Drive, Brewster
845-582-0574, www.clocktowergrill.com

We’re Huntin’ Wabbit! Talented Chef Rich Parente utilizes local, organic, and natural ingredients in all his dishes and surprises his patrons with various specialties including elk and kangaroo. Watch for special events including wild game nights and outdoor music jams organized by his partner and wife, Cassie. The restaurant features regional craft beers in many of their recipes and they will select a local beer for us to try, showcasing our meal. Our chef will teach us the technique used to make one of their specialties, chicken fried rabbit over a savory herb waffle with a fried egg, kale slaw, and redeye gravy as a hearty appetizer. Then continue with a lesson on handmade pasta and a “how to” on grinding and assembling pork sausage. The chef will then combine the two for a tasty treat. Our dessert will be a special cobble utilizing seasonal rhubarb. Come see this creative chef in action. Rest assured you can always expect the unexpected at the Clock Tower Grill!
1 Wed., Apr. 20, 6:00-8:00 pm, $15 (+ $25 sampling fee in CASH, payable to instructor). #13067

NEW! Stone Manor 101
101 Saw Mill River Road, Hawthorne
914-703-4112,
www.stonemanor101.com
Steak House: Proprietors Michael Casarella and Tommy Stratis have been in the restaurant business since they were young boys. This steakhouse is reasonably priced and a fantastic meal anytime; a large panel window allows you to peek into the kitchen and watch the chef prepare your meal. We’ll be treated to a lesson on deshelling a lobster to make one of their favored appetizers, chilled lobster sliders. Next we will find out how to perfectly grill a NY strip (also known as shell) steak along with a traditional green peppercorn cognac sauce. Chef will have us help him make two of the restaurant’s scrumptious sides: Parmesan truffle steak fries and string beans with onions and bacon. Our dessert demonstration will be warm, white chocolate bread pudding, with candied walnuts and caramelized bananas served with a dark rum sauce. Our class will include a description on flavor profiles and a wine pairing for an additional $5. Come out for dinner with a fun and informative chef!
1 Thurs., Apr. 21, 5:30-7:30 pm, $15 (+ $25 sampling fee in CASH, payable to instructor; optional wine pairing additional $5). #13068

Chutney Masala Indian Bistro
4 West Main Street, Irvington
914-591-5500, www.chutneymasala.com
Weekend Lunch/Kitchen Lesson: Chef Navjot shares his vast food knowledge with us from his native home in Jalandhar Punjab where he studied at the culinary institute. Our class will teach his special take on Indian cuisine, including an education on the spices and ingredients used to create the complex flavors that comprise each dish. You’ll hand craft your own vegetable samosa, a pastry filled with delicious spiced vegetables. Our chef will start the lesson with classic kachumber (cucumber) salad. Learn to create a succulent Tandoori salmon tikka and chicken biryani. A vegetable jhalfarezi and yellow lentils demonstration will keep the vegetarians happy too. Try a fresh strawberry lassi, then experience a quick lesson in the kitchen on the specialties of nan bread baked fresh in the tandoor. Always fun surprises from a knowledgeable instructor and a very popular class!
1 Sat., Apr. 23, 12:30-2:30 pm, $15 (+ $25 in CASH sampling fee, payable to instructor). #13069

one.TWENTY.one
2 Dingle Ridge Road, North Salem (Main Building)
914-669-0121, www.121restaurant.com
In the Kitchen/Interactive: Enjoy the lovely scenery on your drive to 121 Restaurant, where Executive Chef Beck Bolender and Chef David Fierstein will have volunteers help prep while they demonstrate several techniques with an emphasis on regional, organic, and natural products.. The wood burning oven is visible through a spectacular glass wall, allowing views of the prep kitchen; it serves as a magical technique for many of their dishes including pizza drawing on both Roman and Neapolitan styles. Learn how to make a light spring apple salad with baby arugula, dried cherries, candied walnuts, and blue cheese adorned with a Champagne vinaigrette. Up next we celebrate the season with a sweet pea farrotto utilizing sundried tomatoes, creamy goat cheese, and pistachio crumbs. Help prepare a pan roasted salmon filet accompanied by roasted pearl onions, purple potatoes, and grilled asparagus. Learn the technique used to make a smoky Hollandaise sauce without “breaking.” Manager and wine expert Rob McKelvey will pair a beautiful offering to accompany our meal. A demo on their special house-made lavender ice cream, fresh berries, and lemon zest will cleanse our palates.
1 Mon., Apr. 25, 5:30-7:30 pm, $15 (+ $25 sampling fee in CASH, payable to instructor). #13070

NEW! Madison Kitchen
7 Madison Avenue, Larchmont
914-732-3024, www.mklarchmont.com
Chopped Winner: Chef and Owner Nick DiBona appeared on Food Network’s Chopped where the baskets were packed with ingredients you might find on a sophisticated brunch menu, including champagne and caviar. In the end he turned classic brunch items into dessert in the final demanding challenge, winning the competition. This young chef and owner features seasonally driven, locally sourced New American cuisine in his restaurant. His latest venture has him producing and selling exciting flavors of Bona Bona ice cream (try the rainbow cookie flavor). The talented chef will teach us to make a garlic risotto featuring the treats of springtime: ramps (wild leeks), Chanterelle mushrooms, sweet peas, and zucchini. Our entrée demonstration will teach us to smoke a lamb T-bone over a fava bean puree, with rosemary fingerling potatoes adorned by his special guava mint syrup. He will teach us to make a lovely Meyer lemon basil tart with a burnt meringue, featuring a side of blueberry Bona Bona ice cream. A very entertaining and talented chef!
1 Tues., Apr. 26, 6:00-8:00 pm, $15 (+ $25 sampling fee in CASH, payable to instructor). #13071

Fino
Amberlands Plaza, 1 Baltic Place, Croton-on-Hudson
914-271-2600,
www.finowestchester.com
Pasta Making: For Chef Paul Vuli, a three-year retirement could not hold back his passion; he specializes in Northern Italian cuisine. While the chef appreciates challenging the traditional approach, he also believes there are certain recipes that work better the old fashioned way. Join us as he teaches us the techniques for these traditional dishes. We will begin with baked clams casino style: garlic breadcrumbs, lemon, and bacon. Our chef shows us his prep kitchen where the fresh pasta is made using his faithful Italian-born pasta machine. Tonight we will see how the homemade thin noodles are used in the dish disperata tagliarini (a light plum tomato sauce with sage and shallots, topped with crabmeat. We will watch him create a stunning dish of filet of red snapper piccata, with capers in a white wine and lemon sauce. We will conclude our lesson with the classic: a Napoleon filled with a light custard of English vanilla pastry cream.
1 Thurs., Apr. 28, 5:30-7:30 pm, $15 (+ $20 sampling fee in CASH, payable to instructor). #13072

NEW! Coals Pizza
131 Parkway Road, Bronxville
914-337-1901, www.coalspizza.com
Weekend Lunch: This pizza parlor surprised them all by winning “best burger” at the 2015 Burger and Beer Blast held at the Kensico Dam with their now-famous hamburger adorned with tequila cured bacon, cheddar cheese, and a spicy cilantro sauce. Owner Billy Etzel will enlighten our class with a demonstration on turning curds into fresh mozzarella and letting us enjoy it while still warm. We love Billy because he will send each of us home with a ball of mozzarella to share (or not) with family and friends. Take notes on how he creates his grilled specialty pizzas with fun names like the Dean Martin and the garlic pizza named Heaven Scent. Sample a few of his favorites and then enjoy Coals’ “Fluffernutter pie” made with luscious Nutella and mascarpone cheese for a “to die for” dessert.
1 Sat., Apr. 30, 12:00-2:00 pm, $15 (+ $20 sampling fee in CASH, payable to instructor). #13104

May

Cedar Street Grill
23 Cedar Street, Dobbs Ferry
914-674-0706, www.cedarstreetgrillny.com
Located in the quiet downtown this restaurant offers American themed fare and artisanal beers; their fresh comfort food has many interesting twists. Family owned and operated, Chef Matt Kay and brother/Manager Joe treat everyone like family. On most evenings you can also find mom Cathy Kay (DF Deputy Mayor) greeting guests at the door. Chef Matt’s passion for creating specialty dishes began as he watched his grandmother (a former restaurateur herself) cook Italian delicacies. Chef Matt will demonstrate his talents with sweet corn and bacon fritters adorned with a pepper-berry aioli. Next a lesson on rolling and stuffing a pork loin with wild rice, currants, and almonds, served with a seasonal fruit chutney. For dessert, cookies and crème parfait: graham crackers, whipped cream, and the secret to his light and airy chocolate mousse.
1 Tues., May 3, 5:30-7:30 pm, $15 (+ $25 sampling fee in CASH, payable to instructor). #13105

The Beehive
30 Old Route 22, Armonk
914-765-0688, www.beehive-restaurant.com

Mariachi Band/Cinco de Mayo: This family-run restaurant’s simple philosophy is that everyone who walks through the door is treated like family, from a family that wrote the book on hospitality. The menu is diverse and specializes in many international dishes. Executive Chef Peter Modroukas is the patriarch of the family and has been the kitchen leader for many years along with his talented son Chef Dean. Chef Eric Lopez, along with the fabulous Modroukas chefs, will be our instructors for the evening, celebrating Cinco de Mayo. Our class will be treated to the sounds of a Mariachi band while we are instructed on how to prepare a traditional Puebla dinner utilizing market and farm fresh ingredients. Chef will teach us his magic with tableside guacamole. Learn the recipe for margaritas offered in many fruit flavors as a class special for $4 each. All baked goods are made on site and our lesson will include a traditional dessert to complement and conclude our Mexican celebration. This is a class not to miss in a restaurant sure to please!
1 Wed., May 4, 6:00-8:00 pm, $15 (+ $25 sampling fee in CASH, payable to instructor). #13106

Café of Love
38 East Main Street, Mt. Kisco
914-242-1002, www.cafeofloveny.com and www.ambafarm.com
Farmer Visit: Get the “dirt” on Café of Love’s spring menu with recipes using local harvests at their peak of perfection! Enjoy an evening utilizing Amba Farms’ harvest. Proprietor and Executive Chef Leslie Lampert believes in a farm-to-table philosophy, which lets us enjoy what is being harvested that week and incorporate it into our evening’s interactive menu. We will discuss and enjoy learning restaurant techniques from Leslie as she shows us step-by-step and taste-by-taste. She will educate us on these “just picked” ingredients by incorporating them into luscious soups, crisp salads, scrumptious sides, and a special flatbread. Your evening’s tastes will be packed to go if you would prefer to enjoy them at home or sit after class to continue the conversation and savor the flavors over a specially priced glass of wine chosen to complement our spring feast. As an added treat one of the local farmers will join us to talk about what is currently happening on their farm. Always a great educational experience from a veteran business woman.
1 Mon., May 9, 5:30-7:30 pm, $15 (+ $25 sampling fee in CASH, payable to instructor). #13107

DeCicco & Sons
17 Maple Avenue, Armonk (Demonstration Kitchen-2nd floor)
914-499-1100, www.deciccoandsons.com

Beer Education/Demo Kitchen: As a family owned and operated specialty grocery store chain, each location offers something special. Here you will find an upstairs bar and restaurant serving local beers and wine, as well as a Bocce court and a fabulous demonstration kitchen. Chef Angelo Ruiz will teach the techniques used to make a special appetizer of seafood ceviche served with endive leaves and jicama chips. The lesson will continue with a lesson on making a classic paella with pork, clams, mussels, and vegetables over saffron rice. With each course there will be an education on beer pairing presented by Brendon O’Brien, their in-house craft beer and bar manager. Enjoy coffee with a sweet selected by their in-house bakery to end our lesson.
1 Tues., May 10, 5:30-7:30 pm, $15 (+ $25 sampling fee in CASH, payable to instructor). #13108

NEW! Penny Lick Ice Cream
580 Warburton Avenue, Hastings-on-Hudson
914-525-1580,
www.pennylickicecream.com
This adorable scoop shop and factory opened less than a year ago in this quaint river town. Do you remember what ice cream used to taste like? Creamy, smooth, fresh, without neon colors, having only a few ingredients and no unpronounceable words on the ingredients list. Owner Ellen Sledge knows, and she is trying to bring the slow food movement to ice cream. Fresh, local ingredients used in small, artisan batches create distinct flavors and a unique experience. Ellen loves being called “the ice cream lady” by the neighborhood children, creating and selling old-fashioned, custard-based ice cream. The name originated from a style of ice cream vending in the late 19th century: for a penny, customers would buy a small scoop, a “lick”, of ice cream in a petite glass with a shallow depression. Join us in the petite ice cream factory for an evening of ice cream basics, tricks to making great ice creams and sorbets at home, and a tutorial on her classic hot fudge. Learn the basics of pasteurization, the ice cream machines, and how to make a classic crème anglaise and sorbet. Finish the night with a sundae in a seasonal flavor!
1 Wed., May 11, 6:30-8:30 pm, $15 (+ $15 sampling fee in CASH, payable to instructor). #13109

NEW! Goldfish Oyster Bar & Restaurant
6 Rockledge Avenue, Ossining
914-762-0051, www.goldfishdining.com
Under the Sea! This hidden restaurant, on an historical site in Ossining, has a surprise waiting inside. Located in a quant residential area, this establishment is set in an old speakeasy. If the walls could only talk! The restaurant is known for serving different three course prix fixe dinners each night of the week. We will watch our chef work in his open kitchen surrounded by a large saltwater fish tank. Owners Tommy Stratis and Michael Casarella will demonstrate the technique used to make fresh ceviche: shrimp, scallop, calamari, red onion, and citrus combine to “cook” the delicate bounty from the sea. Next a lesson on saffron bouillabaisse: clams, mussels, calamari, shrimp, and chorizo (Spanish sausage) over pasta. The dessert demo takes us to a classic combination with a twist: a chocolate raspberry cannoli. Our class will include a description on flavor profiles and a wine pairing for an additional $5. Come take a dip in the sea!
1 Thurs., May 12, 6:00-8:00 pm, $15 (+ $25 sampling fee in CASH, payable to instructor; optional wine pairing additional $5). #13110

Tarry Tavern
27 Main Street, Tarrytown
914-631-7227, www.tarrytavern.com
Fresh Pasta Demo: Owner and Chef Henry Cabral has come up with a unique formula: his casual American gastro-pub offers creative, locally sourced dishes and seasonal menus inspired by what farmers and fishermen are growing, raising, and catching. Down the street from the Tarrytown Music Hall, many visit before or after a show for a splendid meal. The chef will show us how to make a beautiful meal starting with a velvety Jerusalem artichoke soup adorned with bacon crumbs. He will demonstrate his hand cut fettuccine and duck confit, continuing with a lesson on a roasted Berkshire pork chop over fregola (Sardinian toasted pasta) with braised red cabbage and an apple-pear mostrada (Italian condiment with fruit and mustard). For dessert, a seasonal favorite, strawberry rhubarb tart. Join us for an informative demonstration with a classically trained restaurateur!
1 Mon., May 16, 6:00-8:00 pm, $15 (+ $25 sampling fee in CASH, payable to instructor). #13111

Peter Pratt’s Inn
673 Croton Heights Road, Yorktown Heights
914-962-4090, www.prattsinn.com
This colonial homestead, built in 1780, has been a local inn dating back to 1926. A special place to dine, it has been producing fabulous creations from master chef and owner Jonathan Pratt, who took over for his father, Peter, in the kitchen. This chef is known to go out locally into the woods and forage for morels and ramps at this time of year and loves when folks join him. He is a wonderful speaker and will delight us with stories of the Inn’s history and culinary past. Jon always treats us to a wine pairing specially selected for the evening. We will toast our chef while we learn how to perfectly sear Day Boat scallops drizzled in a lobster beurre blanc, served with wild morels, Brussel sprout leaves, and toasted hazelnuts. Next up, the instructions on making a spring lamb tagine with couscous. Utilizing his skills in gathering his own ramps he will show us how to turn them into flavorful hushpuppies with a chipotle crème. We will end with a cool dish of heaven in a surprise flavor from our chef as he discusses how he makes the ice cream served in the restaurant. This teacher is an old favorite and always a popular class so grab a friend and reserve your spot early!
1 Wed., May 18, 6:00-8:00 pm, $15 (+ $30 sampling fee in CASH, payable to instructor). #13112

NEW!
Ben’s of Scarsdale, Kosher Foods and Catering
718 Central Park Avenue, Scarsdale
914-468-BENS (2367), www.BensDeli.net
Kosher Deli: Enter any Ben’s and be greeted by a delicious aroma of delicatessen. Pause by their takeout counter brimming with freshly-prepared foods to go. Owner Ronald Dragoon is very involved in customer service and says that to some, delicatessen is something you put between two slices of bread but to him, it’s a calling. He is truly committed to preserving the traditional cuisine of his Eastern European heritage, amidst all that’s required to operate a modern yet kosher restaurant. We are in for a treat as Chef Scott Rabedeau will teach us about some traditional kosher deli favorites starting with their now famous Ronnie’s old fashioned chicken soup with matzo ball. We will learn the secrets to their sweet and sour stuffed cabbage. Ben’s corned beef and pastrami are the best around incorporating a two week process. We will hear Chef Scott explain the process and try a mini slider version. Learn the secret to the amazing coleslaw served here, along with crunchy garlicky pickles. Desserts are made out of house to adhere to dietary restrictions; we’ll try some assorted “ruggies” (rugelach) Jewish pastries of Ashkenazic origin. Join us for an interesting evening of tradition and fun!
1 Thurs., May 19, 5:30-7:30 pm, $15 (+ $20 sampling fee in CASH, payable to instructor). #13113

 

July

 

Zwilling J.A. Henckels Cooking Studio
270 Marble Avenue, Pleasantville
914-749-3406, www.zwilling.com/en-us
Hands-on/Knife Lesson: This company now has a new facility with a magnificent test kitchen. They’re mostly known for their beautiful knives from Germany; we’ll be able to shop with a special 20% class day discount on Zwilling, Staub, Demeyere, and Miyabi products. Bernard Janssen, Resident Chef and Culinary Program Manager, will enlighten us on the different products and we’ll help him prepare beet carpaccio adorned with goat cheese and hazelnuts. He will have us make rack of lamb, and gremolata of olives, parsley, and citrus with a seasonal vegetable bulgur while utilizing all the latest kitchen gadgets. A lesson on lemon pie with meringue sugared pistachios and a strawberry coulis will be our sweet instruction. Sign up quickly as there is limited space. This one is going to be FUN!
1 Mon., July 11, 5:30-7:30 pm, $15 (+ $25 sampling fee in CASH, payable to instructor). #5600

Hudson Social
11 Station Plaza, Dobbs Ferry
914-693-3875, www.hudsonsocial.com
Outdoors/Water Views: Located in the restored landmark Dobbs Ferry train station just a stone’s throw from the Hudson and the new waterfront park. Chef Joe Bologna will show us how to make a special treat. Learn how to roast marinated, free range chicken and artisan sausage utilizing La Caja China (translated “the Chinese box”), used by Chinese immigrant workers in Cuba as they toiled in the sugar cane fields. Chef will demonstrate two sides: a buttery mashed potato and “elotes” – Mexican street corn on the cob. Known for their special cocktails, they will have a few choices to imbibe if you choose. They also fill growlers of craft beers to take home. We cap off our taste of summer with ice cream to cool down on a hot summer’s night. Weather permitting, we will be dining outdoors. This class is accessible by train. See you down by the river!
1 Tues., July 19, 5:30-7:30 pm, $15 (+ $25 sampling fee in CASH, payable to instructor). #5601

Clock Tower Grill
512 Clock Tower Drive, Brewster
845-582-0574, www.clocktowergrill.com

Wear your bib! Talented Chef Rich Parente utilizes local, organic, and natural ingredients in all his dishes and surprises his patrons with various specialties including elk and kangaroo. The restaurant features 13 regional craft beers on tap used in many of their recipes; they’ll select a local beer for us to try. Our chef will teach us the technique used to make an old fashioned shrimp boil and lobster bake including clams, mussels, and corn on the cob. Then continue with a lesson on roasted potato salad. Our dessert will be a special treat utilizing seasonal fruits. They offer music on Fridays in the summer in the courtyard. Rest assured you can always expect the unexpected at the Clock Tower Grill! Class is outdoors and rain date is the following day.
1 Wed., July 20 or rain date Thurs., July 21, 6:00-8:00 pm, $15 (+ $35 sampling fee in CASH, payable to instructor). #5602

NEW! How Sweet It Is
979 McLean Avenue, Yonkers
914-327-4555, www.howsweet979.com
Hands-On Sweet Treats: Sweets shouldn’t only look good, they must taste amazing and make you melt the moment you put them into your mouth. Try a treat you had as a child and get all fuzzy inside. Owner Aurea Roman has always loved sweets; at the age of 7 she used her Suzy Bake Oven to start her own bakery. The shop’s baker has had her red velvet and the Elvis cupcakes featured in Oprah’s magazine; they’ll be available for purchase. The theme for our summer cake and candy class will be sugar flowers, salt water taffy, rock candy, and marshmallow cones. The owner will show us how to make and decorate non-bake cake pops that we can sample with coffee or tea. Chef Aurea will teach us how to make the shop’s fluffy frosting to decorate your own little vanilla cake filled with chocolate mousse. Learn the techniques to create decorations for our cakes utilizing sugars, fondant cutouts, and molded chocolate pieces. Bring out the kid in you!
1 Mon., July 25, 6:00-8:00 pm, $15 (+ $25 sampling fee in CASH, payable to instructor). #5716

Peter Pratt’s Inn
673 Croton Heights Road, Yorktown Heights
914-962-4090, www.prattsinn.com
Picnic on the Patio! This colonial homestead, built in 1780, has a historical presence, having served as General Washington’s command post. Jon Pratt, executive chef and restaurateur, welcomes you to his restaurant’s lovely patio to enjoy his take on a summer picnic. Watch as he prepares our meal while instructing us to make house cured bacon tacos. Then learn his secret to the best fried chicken and waffles. He continues with a lesson on some of his favorite sides utilizing ingredients from local farms, including corn and tomatoes from The Meadows Farm right next door. Scallion hush puppies made with Wild Hive cornmeal and ultra-ripe tomato salad will be the headliners for our picnic. Jon treats us to craft beers paired especially for the evening’s cuisine. Our dessert will be a refreshing sour cherry sorbet made in his special machine; a great ending as a summer treat. Jon welcomes you to purchase honey from his bees located on the property. This most entertaining chef is a favorite, so sign up quickly to reserve your spot!
1 Thurs., July 28, 6:00-8:00 pm, $15 (+ $30 sampling fee in CASH, payable to instructor). #5718

August

NEW! The Cookery Restaurant
39 Chestnut Street, Dobbs Ferry
914-305-2336, www.thecookeryrestaurant.com
Truly a neighborhood restaurant dedicated to capturing the warmth of Italian comfort food, Chef David DiBari has received many accolades during his young career. He continues with “Dough Nation” a traveling wood burning oven, making pizza at local farmer’s markets and events. Each pie delicious and crisp which sparked his next venture, The Parlor, creating another local favorite. He loves to cook for people who care deeply about what they eat. Along with a passion for food, his family is the source of his food inspiration. The table in the front window is said to be from his grandmother’s kitchen. The neo-nostalgic Italian menu proves evident of his style of cooking which is to progressively approach simplicity. Chef de Cuisine, Mike Bianco will give a demonstration on how to make The Cookery’s house-made mozzarella using fresh curd and served with vincono, thyme and a grilled Tuscan bread. All pastas are made in house and we will be privy to a tutorial on cauliflower ravioli, adorned with garlic, lemon, brown butter. We finish our demonstration with a summertime treat of blueberry boudino (Italian pudding) adorned with a fan favorite – white icing and Jane’s vanilla ice cream. If you have not tried this most creative chef’s kitchen, schedule a visit soon!
1 Mon., Aug. 1, 5:30-7:30 pm, $15 (+ $25 sampling fee, payable to instructor). #5719

 NEW! Big Bang Coffee Roasters
1008 Main St., Peekskill
914-433-7278, www.bigbangcoffeeroasters.com
Weekend JOE! Peekskill’s newest independent coffee shop is the only local roaster owned shop – boasting exclusively organic, fair trade coffees and espresso. Each coffee is roasted at their own small batch “roaster” located at “The Hat Factory” less than five minutes away from the cafe. Each bean is roasted to a carefully selected temperature to reveal its ideal flavor profile. This coffee bean producer is committed to being socially responsible and the plants, workers and Earth has been treated kindly every step of the way. They purchase raw beans from a family-owned supplier, who is devoted to sourcing from environmentally conscious organic plantations with comprehensive fair trade policies. Join Proprietor Elina Dart as she exposes us to three different regions of coffee beans, how they are served and prepared by utilizing three different methods of brewing. This lecture will describe growing regions around the world, processing methods, and roast levels, as well an overview of the basics of brewing. We will learn the skills necessary to properly extract coffee at home for consistency and the best flavor. Snacks will be served to enjoy with our delicious samples of coffee. Fly solo or bring a buddy to experience the secrets to making a fine brew!
1 Sun., Aug. 7, 10:30am-12:30pm, $15 (+ $15 sampling fee in CASH, payable to instructor). #5720

DeCicco & Sons
17 Maple Avenue, Armonk (Demonstration Kitchen-2nd floor)
914-499-1100, www.deciccoandsons.com
Beer Education/Demo Kitchen: As a family owned and operated specialty grocery store chain, each location offers something special. Here you’ll find an upstairs bar and restaurant serving local beers and wine, as well as a Bocce court and a fabulous demonstration kitchen. One of our fabulous chefs will teach the techniques used to make some of their catering specialties. First a lesson on combining two summertime treats – tomatoes and watermelon with a buttermilk broth to create a flavorful chilled summer soup. Next the recipe and technique to make crispy cornmeal fried catfish with roasted red peppers, oyster mushrooms and an asparagus pesto. Our lesson will continue with white asparagus topped with a quail egg, bacon hollandaise and soft herbs. As a special treat, there will be an education on pairing beer with our meal presented by Brendon O’Brien, their in-house craft beer and bar manager. Finally, their spectacular bakery will provide a special dessert as a sweet treat to conclude our lesson. Arrive early or stay late to shop the beautifully stocked aisles!
1 Tues., August 9, 5:30-7:30 pm, $15 (+ $25 sampling fee in CASH, payable to instructor). #57221

Sam’s of Gedney Way
50 Gedney Way, White Plains, NY 10605
914-949-0978, www.samsofgedneyway.com
BBQ Menu: When Prohibition was repealed in 1933, Sam Eisenstein received the first of three liquor licenses granted in Westchester County. Sam was “a wonderful guy, hardworking, gracious, friendly,” and he represented the epitome of restaurateurs. As a tribute to those qualities, his patrons elected him Mayor of Gedney Way. Today, owners Peter and Karen Herrero have kept the tradition alive with exceptional quality and service in a comfortable atmosphere and have expanded the business with an extensive catering operation. The Great American BBQ Company has been catering events in the tri state area for over 20 years. Now it has opened a seasonal BBQ Shack on the Deck of the 85 year old restaurant. Culinary Director Joseph Sasso will get you excited to learn the secrets to make a great BBQ translating to your home summer grilling. You will learn how to roast a whole suckling pig from start to finish with an informative demonstration using La Caja China – translated “the Chinese box”. This method dates back to the 1850’s when Chinese immigrant workers in Cuba toted this roasting box around to cook their meal as they toiled in the sugar cane fields. He will show us how to prepare traditional sides and new healthier options utilizing brines, rubs, sauces, and salads. You will dine on young swine and Peter will treat us to some summer beverages including sangria, local craft beers and more. This class will enable you to take these ideas and apply them to your summer parties. So throw away your blue bag of charcoal and get ready to learn and enjoy a “Great American BBQ”! Grab a few friends and make a night of it while learning tricks of the trade from a master!
1 Wed., Aug. 10, 5:30-7:30 pm, $15 (+ $25 sampling fee in CASH, payable to instructor). #5722

NEW! 273 Kitchen
273 Halstead Avenue, Harrison
914-732-3333,
www.273kitchen.com
Mediterranean Inspired/Weekend Lunch: This lovely restaurant and wine bar offers exquisite plates. Owner and Chef Constantine Kalandranis is a master at combining the freshest farm finds. Along with General Manager Christopher Creedon, Sommelier Richard Mitchell, and Executive Chef Hichem Habbas, he makes both the food and service shine. Our chef will teach us to make tsatziki and mezze served with olives, cheese, almonds, and house made pita. Next learn to peel and stuff a beautiful, only in summertime, delicious vine ripened tomato with quinoa, feta, and fresh herbs, served with local arugula and red onion, and adorned with the chef’s specialty: grilled pork kebabs. Our dessert demo: how to make an easy yogurt gelato with honey macerated cherries, embellished with mint and cinnamon walnuts. Our chef treats us to a lesson on a summertime special drink.
1 Sat., Aug. 13, 12:00 noon-2:00 pm, $15 (+ $25 sampling fee in CASH, payable to instructor). #5723

Cedar Street Grill
23 Cedar Street, Dobbs Ferry
914-674-0706, www.cedarstreetgrillny.com
N’awlins Cookin’! Located in the quiet downtown, this restaurant offers American themed fare and artisanal beers; their fresh comfort food has many interesting twists. Owner and Chef Matt Kay’s passion for creating specialty dishes began as he watched his grandmother (a former restaurateur herself) cook Italian delicacies. Chef Matt will demonstrate his talents with his New Orleans inspired fare. He’ll teach us to make mac and cheese fritters with a creole dipping sauce. Next a lesson on chicken and andouille sausage etouffee served with Carolina rice. A briny treat from the chef may be in the cards along with a mini education on something from the sea. Our cocktail education is on CSG’s famous summer beverage Ready Aim Fire made with serrano chilies and lime. For dessert, seasonal berries and house-made whipped cream. Come join us for a fun night!
1 Tues., Aug. 16, 5:30-7:30 pm, $15 (+ $25 sampling fee in CASH, payable to instructor). #5724