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“A great learning experience”

Cookery School at Little Portland Street
Ranked #17 of 191 Classes & Workshops in London
Certificate of Excellence
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Owner description: At Cookery School we focus on demystifying cooking, removing jargon and bringing back good home cooking skills at our school in Central London. At Cookery School the atmosphere is fun and informal. We provide the skills necessary to become a confident and independent cook and all our classes have a very high proportion of hands on practice. We use only high quality, sustainable and primarily organic ingredients and are proud to be the only London cookery school awarded the maximum 3 Stars for sustainability from the SRA. With day and evening classes and courses, corporate events and private kitchen hire, there is something for everyone. Winner of "The Best City Cookery School 2013" and runners -up for "Most Sustainable Cookery School 2014" in the UK Cookery School Awards.
Reviewed 17 June 2016

I did the slice and dice knife skills course a couple of weeks ago and felt it was a very enjoyable and rewarding three hours. Slicing and dicing our way through leeks, onions, carrots, parsnips, turnips, celery, basil, beef steak, garlic, apples, oranges, potatoes and even filleting plaice meant we had to work pretty fast. Our instructor, Lucy, was really great: knowledgeable, helpful, supportive and all with a lovely sense of humour. The ingredients we prepared were cooked by Lucy and her assistant, so that at the end of the course we sat down to a lovely meal. A great course and a brilliant way to learn. Thanks to my wife Cathy for such an inspired birthday present.

Thank chris mccall
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Cookery_School_, Public Relations Manager at Cookery School at Little Portland Street, responded to this reviewResponded 20 June 2016

Dear Chris

We are so pleased that you enjoyed the class and will pass on your kind words to Lucy. We hope that Cathy is now benefiting from your new found skills!

Kind regards,
The team at Cookery School

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Write a ReviewReviews (153)
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"knife skills"
in 11 reviews
"cooking class"
in 9 reviews
"great class"
in 5 reviews
"great teacher"
in 5 reviews
"dim sum"
in 4 reviews
"absolute beginners"
in 4 reviews
"learned how"
in 4 reviews
"team building event"
in 4 reviews
"chef stefan"
in 3 reviews
"master class"
in 2 reviews
"student ratio"
in 2 reviews
"practical skills"
in 2 reviews
"fellow students"
in 2 reviews
"cooking experience"
in 2 reviews
"cooking course"
in 2 reviews
"learnt loads"
in 3 reviews
"bread making"
in 3 reviews
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87 - 91 of 153 reviews

Reviewed 14 June 2016

I attended the Ultimate Meat & Poultry cooking course at the Cookery School last Saturday. Frankly, it was excellent! Although my head wanted to explode with the amount of information I took on, I left excited to start cooking. I am very new to ‘proper’ cooking and I learnt so much, even down to how to cook onions.

Congratulations must go to John, the Chef. What a great teacher he is! Very approachable, no question was too silly or inappropriate. He never made me feel inadequate (though I am, as a cook). He gave us all equal attention and assistance. Please thank him for me.

Also, thanks to Chris, who worked hard all day, cleaning, clearing and preparing. He must have sore hands after all that washing. Great job!

The environment was clean, safe, welcoming and organised; the food organic & delicious!

I would recommend you to everyone!

Thank DamonPN
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Cookery_School_, Public Relations Manager at Cookery School at Little Portland Street, responded to this reviewResponded 15 June 2016

Dear DamonPN

Thank you so much for the kind words and lovely review which I have already passed on to John and he was very grateful.

Keep on cooking!
Best wishes,
The team at Cookery School

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Reviewed 6 June 2016

A group of 28 of us attended the cookery school as a team building exercise and it was a great night. Everyone thoroughly enjoyed the evening, the chefs were excellent and helped you all the way (and even did some of the preparing/cooking when we got side tracked talking!). An excellent idea that I would highly recommend, you won't be disappointed.

Thank pip1502
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Cookery_School_, Corporate Bookings Manager at Cookery School at Little Portland Street, responded to this reviewResponded 7 June 2016

Dear pip1502

Thank you so much for the lovely review and we hope to see you back here again soon.

Kind regards,
Alissa and the team at Cookery School

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Reviewed 6 June 2016 via mobile

Just been to the gluten free class, a total waste of time and money. Their 'chickpea gnocchi' was in fact a lesson on how to mix chickpea flour with water, the gluten free pizza base was a mix of polenta and water which was inedible. The fish cakes were tasteless, a mix of boiled potatoes, parsley and unseasoned pollock, and the cakes merely replaced wheat flour with blended gluten free flour which you can buy off the shelf in any supermarket. More worrying is that the owner thinks that it's acceptable to charge £175 for this course. She has offered us free vouchers for another time but it was that bad I am giving it a miss. Spend your money on something far more worthwhile and give this place a big miss.

5  Thank Joanne B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Cookery_School_, Owner at Cookery School at Little Portland Street, responded to this reviewResponded 19 June 2016

Dear Joanne

Thank you for your review of the class. I am so sorry that you felt that our class fell below your expectations as we strive hard to deliver whatever we promise on our website.

We did speak about it on the telephone but I am glad to have the opportunity of explaining the theory behind the class and what we are trying to achieve here. The class is aimed at those who have found it tricky to cook wonderful gluten free food at home as many people that come to the classes are not familiar with good alternatives that can be easily prepared. We steer away from the obvious gluten free foods, like salads and stews, but are keen to teach our students that by substituting for gluten free ingredients, we have come up with some wonderful surprises. Our gluten free food has no additives or nasty chemicals – this is real food! We try to introduce a range of different flours from regular gluten free flour, though to polenta flour, chickpea flour, chestnut flour and coconut flour. We try to use these as imaginatively as possible so that those on gluten free diets can enjoy a range of delicious homemade foods.

The basis of much of the starch, that is gluten free, used does start with making a sauce – as in the case of making a gluten free béchamel with a fool proof method - or pouring the starch – as in the case of the polenta and chickpea flour into water to cook it and render it edible. There is no way that these dishes can be made any other way. They are then used as the basis of a dish ie soft polenta, a pizza base or chickpea gnocchi. The wonderful creamy chestnut cake is also made by combining chestnut with flour in the first instance before baking it. These techniques are essential to the various dishes that we have elected to make.

We also work on reinforcing certain principles so these crop up throughout the class and confidence is developed as they are repeated. If one knows how to add starch to water correctly, the resulting sauce or dish will not be lumpy. We favour carefully mixing the water into the starch whilst it is cold and then heating it gently to allow the starch to thicken as it cooks. Others pour starch into boiling water but there is far more chance of it lumping with this method, particularly in the case of novice cooks.

You are again owed an explanation about your comment on the simplicity of the method and lack of taste of the fishcakes. Fish cakes are simple to make and you describe the basic method perfectly. We do a classic fish cake and serve it with a chilli sauce. Our recipe provides a good basic one that students can modify by adding any other ingredients that they would like. We are always told how delicious our classic fish cakes are and how often our students replicate them at home, They are particularly good with the chilli sauce. I fear that taste is a matter of preference. I am sorry if they were not to your liking.

You did say that you had been a coeliac for nine years and were used to cooking gluten free food. I suggested that, despite the fact that we publish exactly what the class covers, it may not have been a suitable one for you if you are a cook, used to experimenting on the food that you make, but had hoped that the chestnut cake and cheese soufflé would have provided new dishes for you as could some of the others.

You also told me that the macaroni cheese could be bought at Tesco and Sainsburys and could not see why we were making it. Our purpose in doing this class is to allow those that do not want to buy shop bought dishes to be able to cook delicious food for themselves at home.

We used, shop bought, bottled sour cherries in the sponge cake because they are available throughout the year and add a little tartness to a traditional sponge. Any fruit can be used successfully in this case but these cherries seem to be an appropriate and interesting addition to the cake. I feel that, given the opportunity to explain, I owe this to you.

The other issue that you addressed with me was the lack of wine served with the meal. We believe that generosity and food go together. We ensure that wine always accompanies meals as they enhance the flavour of one another. During the meal all glasses are regularly filled within the bounds of safe drinking – allowed by our liquor licence. I believe that at the end of the meal when another glass of wine was requested, the teacher said that coffee and dessert was about to be served. Wine served with the food would not have been appropriate at that time. This had nothing to do with the cost of the wine or the class.

We pride ourselves on a high staff:student teaching ratio and our generosity in regards to what we do. We see this as an essential part of our sustainability policy – which is at the core of all that we do. I am glad that you enjoyed the friendliness and knowedge of Stefan’s teaching.

I am sorry that you would not like to take up using the two vouchers that we sent to you as it would be good to be given a second chance to show how delicious our food is. You would encounter that, along with our clear teaching on all of our classes. As our vouchers are transferable, please do feel free to give them to someone else to try us out. We do a range of different classes and there may be one that someone else may enjoy.

Again, I am sorry that we fell short of your expectation and can only hope that you will consider giving us a second chance.

Best wishes
Rosalind

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Reviewed 26 May 2016

I went to the Indian Vegetarian cooking class and enjoyed it a lot. I felt inspired to try the recipes and enjoyed hearing about the spices and their benefits. would recommed

Thank db1985593
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Cookery_School_, Public Relations Manager at Cookery School at Little Portland Street, responded to this reviewResponded 31 May 2016

Dear db1985593
Thank for the great review. We do hope you practice the recipes at home and would love to see any photos you have.
Many thanks
The team at Cookery School

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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