Far and away, the best part of the experience was our instructor/chef, Javier. He was cheerful and engaging, tailoring the lesson to our skill level. All of us were already reasonably competent in the kitchen, so he took the time to show us some more advanced techniques, from knife skills to preparation methods, which was delightful. He was also more than willing to chat, instead of focusing solely on the lesson, which we enjoyed. Javier's masterful knowledge and ability to oversee the tasks of four people and carry on a conversation about Catalan culinary and social habits was truly impressive.
The operation was impressive as well. Our hosts were friendly and welcome without being overly intrusive. The building was nicely decorated, and the kitchen setup inspired immediate envy. Quality cooking and prep surfaces with ample space to work without colliding with neighbors, and all the right tools to get the job done. When we changed course a little in the middle of a dish, the other things we needed were close at hand, not buried in some other room.
The food we made was quite good, too. Somewhat traditional Spanish dishes, they were inspired enough that I did not feel that I could have come up with the same thing, but simple enough that I know I could make it myself (and have!). They were kind enough to accommodate our food preferences and came up with truly delicious meals. It was honestly some of the best eating I did while in Spain.
My family and I really had a great time here. Good eating and good conversation. A wonderful way to spend an afternoon.
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