Posts Tagged ‘virginia cooking classes’

Sur La Table Hands-On Cooking Class in Pentagon City – Hold the Wine, But Lot’s of Fun Anyway!

August 21st, 2013 • No Comments

I hadn’t been to cooking class at Sur La Table in Pentagon City in a long time – maybe 6 years, so it was time to visit one of the original recreational cooking schools in the Washington, D.C. area. The class I took was hands-on – The Best of Szechuan Cooking – and was a great excuse to get my wok skills going again. Wine isn’t allowed to be consumed..so I was bit hyped on tea, but I guess change is always good!

I flipped for this Dish!

I flipped for this Dish!

I actually haven’t owned a wok in over 10 years – in college, I learned how to use a wok from a guy who demonstrated its use in a class on public speaking – he made it seem so accessible, that I used to make alot of my meals in college and grad school with a wok. What I really enjoy about this type of cooking is that once all the ingredients are prepped, the actual cooking isn’t fussy, you just basically add the ingredients at high heat, keep it moving and eat!
Joe Lipinski - Cooking Instructor Extraordinaire!

Joe Lipinski – Cooking Instructor Extraordinaire!

The class was taught by Joe Lipinski who’s title is “Resident Chef” but it really should be Head Culinary Entertainer and Coordinator – he had an excellent rapport with the group and it was obvious he enjoyed engaging the group. DC is a tough town for strangers to meet – intense is a word I often hear for the personality of Washingtonians – and he did a good job at letting people sort of entertain themselves while keeping the cooking in the direction it needed to go. Alot of corporate recruiters and managers could take a lesson from this guy!


2013-08-20 19.15.16Hot and Sour Soup:
This was a very simplified recipe for the dish which can include strange ingredients like wood mushrooms, black fungus and wild lilies – in this recipe, those were replaced from a very available ingredient: shiitake mushrooms. The key to this dish is to balance the hot (which came from hot chile oil) with the sour – rice vinegar worked for this dish. If you balance those two items, you can actually use any ingredients that add heat and acidity like hot peppers for heat and lemon, lime or various vinegars to balance the flavors. Since the pork is really just being simmered in the soup, another animal protein like chicken can work too..oh, and this is an excuse to add tofu to your diet which adds a fun texture to the soup!

2013-08-20 19.43.52Noodles with Ground Pork (Ants Climbing a Tree)
I love noodles, but when you go to an Asian market like H-Mart or Grand Mart, the choices can be overwhelming (and quite intimidating!) – so it’s always nice to get some hands on practice. In this case, the “tree” in the dish is mung bean noodles which were pre-boiled and cooled so they could be added to the dish with the “ants” ie. seared and browned ground pork, to create a wonderful meshing of flavors.

2013-08-20 20.51.39Bang Bang Chicken
Essentially, broth boiled chicken in a chunky peanut sauce – what makes this dish interesting and delicious is really the cold lettuce leaves and cucumber and carrots against the savory chicken. This is a dish that you could either forget about or relish for a fun outdoor BBQ/picnic type of event or an easy to throw together leftover dinner. What’s astonishing is that little changes in your dish like crispy lettuce (or could you make this into a sandwich with bread?), crunchy veggies – which could be replaced with a kimchi or some kind of relish, could actually make this a fun variable dish that could change with your moods!

2013-08-20 20.43.28Dry-Fried Green Beans with Chile Sauce
Essentially this is some type of green been (traditional Chinese long green beans or vericots vert work just fine as well..), seared and blistered at a high temperature with lot’s of flavorful ginger, garlic and chile paste to create a sticky, hot sauce that makes this either a hot side dish or a fun cold dish that could be added to cold lettuce or even possibly a little feta cheese for a fun refreshing summer afternoon. This is a go-to dish – especially because I’m not a fan of boiled green beans, and they seem to be so prevalent at the Farmer’s Market..

Enjoy this overview of my fun hands-on cooking class at Sur La Table – here are also some fun cooking classes you may want to take at Sur La Table Pentagon City:

Coastal Italian Cuisine, Saturday, August 24th, 10 am , Sur La Table Pentagon City

2-Day Baking Workshop, Thursday and Friday 11 am, August 29th and 30th, Sur La Table Pentagon City h

Paella Making Class and Dinner, Thursday, September 5th, La Tasca (Chinatown)

Charlie “I Drink on the Job” Adler

Tasting Events in DC – June 25th – July 1st, 2012

June 21st, 2012 • No Comments

Even with this heat wave, I’m seeing alot of food and drink events in the DC Region and some interesting cooking classes as well. I thought the Blog would be a fun place to post these events every once in awhile (until the TasteDC Food and Drink Event Calendar is completed in the Fall), enjoy!

Photo from 2012 Fancy Food Show

5-Course Belgian Beer Dinner
June 25th (Monday) 7 pm
Mad Fox Brewing Company, 444 West Broad Street, Suite I, Falls Church, VA 22046

Menu with Beers
Our culinary team, led by Executive Chef Andrew Dixon, has an exciting menu for our first Belgian themed beer dinner. We’ll have a 5-course meal paired with Mad Fox’s Belgian-style beers, including the soon to be released Abbaye des Chutes and the Witte Vos Witbier.

The cost is $75 excluding taxes and gratuity – seating is limited,
Reservations with a credit card are taken at 703-942-6840.


Gluten Free Wine Dinner
June 26th (Tuesday) 7 pm
Wildfire McLean, Tysons Galleria 3rd Floor, McLean, VA 22102

Join us for an evening of gluten free dining, featuring a four course custom menu, each paired with a hand-selected
wine to complement the dish. The event begins with a reception at 6:30 p.m., follwed by dinner at 7:00 p.m.
Guest speaker, Vanessa Weisbrod, Executive Editor of Delight Gluten Free Magazine, will be on hand to share her insight on living and dining gluten free.
Complete Menu

Tickets Are $65/per person exclusive of tax and gratuity
Make Reservations by Calling Elissa or Amanda at (703) 442-9110

6-Course Sushi-Ko Beer Dinner
June 26th (Tuesday) 7 pm
5455 Wisconsin Avenue Chevy Chase, MD 20815

Six-course menu created by owner and creative director of Sushi-ko, Daisuke Utagawa, together with beer expert Jocelyn Cambier.

The beer dinner is $85, all inclusive. Here’s the menu:

Edamame paired with Port City pale ale
Lobster and Asparagus Suimono (clear soup) with Brasseurs Illimites double porter
Flounder Carpaccio with White Soy and Truffle Sauce complemented by a surprise beer of Brasseurs du Monde
Honey and Soy Roasted Duck with A l’Abri de La Tempete Corps Mort
Spicy Broiled Mussels and Coronado Islander IPA
and a final course of Nigiri Sushi paired with Brasseurs Illimites Imperial Stout

Call (301) 961-1644 for tickets

Wine Tasting 101: Champagne Deutz & Maison Delas (Rhône) Class
June 26th (Tuesday) 7 pm
French American Cultural Foundation, La Maison Francaise, 4101 Reservoir Road, NW, Washington, DC 20007

Charlie Adler Shows How to Open Champagne

Our monthly Wine Tasting 101 soirées — with veteran wine journalist Claire Morin-Gibourg – explores the regions (Burgundy, Champagne, Rhône Valley, Languedoc and Bordeaux) and vineyards in France, as well as tasting techniques. List of wines for this session include: -Champagne Deutz Brut Classic, Champagne Deutz Brut Rosé nv, Champagne Deutz Blanc de Blancs, Cuvée William Deutz millésimé, Delas Frères blanc Saint Joseph ou Condrieu, Delas Frères rouge Hermitage; Also included: a fine assortment of cheeses.

Tickets Are $70/per person
Purchase Tickets Online


Chef’s Best
June 26th (Tuesday) 6:30 pm
The Washington Hilton Hotel
1919 Connecticut Avenue NW, Washington, DC
Enter through the “T Street” Entrance

VIP Reception for Sponsors & Special Guests, 5:30pm
Main Doors Open, 6:30pmMore than 1,300 guests will enjoy tastings from 60 of the region’s brightest culinary stars while raising hundreds of thousands of dollars to support children and adults facing HIV/AIDS, cancer and other life-challenging illnesses. In addition to a menu filled with one-of-a-kind delights, you’ll enjoy bidding on live and silent auctions featuring travel opportunities and other great adventures.

Tickets Are $250/per person (Table/Sponsorships Available)
More Info and Purchase Tickets Online

Sold Out-Whiskey Cocktail Making Class
June 27th (Wednesday) 6 pm
The Gibson, 2009 14th Street NW,Washington, DC , 20009

One ticket to The Gibson Whiskey Cocktail Making Class on Wednesday June 27, 2012 at 6 PM
Whiskey-blending tutorial with premium single malt whiskeys
Take-home custom blended whiskey

Tickets Are $60/per person

6-Course Spanish Wine Dinner
June 27th (Wednesday) 7 pm
Tuskies, 203 Harrison St., Leesburg, VA 20175

Guest speaker Alicia Geiser will showcase some of the delicious wines coming from Spain. Chef Patrick will be hard at work pairing these wines with his interpretation of Spanish cuisine. $95 inclusive

Tickets Are $95/per person inclusive
Purchase Tickets Online

Catoctin Creek – The Art of Summer Cocktails
June 27th (Wednesday) 6:30 – 8:3O PM
J&G Steakhouse Wine Bar, 515 15th Street NW, Washington, DC 20010

Scott Harris, general manager of the award-winning Virginia distillery Catoctin Creek, will demonstrate how to make three whiskey-based drinks that are sure to be a hit at your next summer soirée. Guests will also enjoy paired bites and receive a gift bag of Catoctin goodies after the event and then show off your newly acquired mixology skills later this summer.


Tickets Are $41/per person
Purchase Tickets Online

Great Lakes Brewing Company Beer Dinner
June 28th (Thursday) 7 – 10 pm
Dino’s, 3435 Connecticut Avenue NW
Cleveland Park, Washington DC, 20008

The Great Lakes Brewing Company’s Mission Statement: “Great Lakes Brewing Company is a principle-centered, environmentally respectful and socially conscious company committed to crafting fresh, flavorful, high-quality beer and food for the enjoyment of our customers. We aspire to maintain our status as the premier craft brewery in the Great Lakes region and are dedicated to uncompromising service, continuous improvement and innovative consumer education.”
See Complete Menu http://www.dino-dc.com/2012/06/great-lakes-brewing-company-brew-dinner.html/#start

Tickets Are $55/per person exclusive of tax & gratuity
Call for Reservations 202-686-2966


Essential Knife Skills
June 30th (Saturday) 2:30 – 4:30 pm
Sur La Table (Pentagon City), 1101 South Joyce Street Suite B-20 , Arlington, Virginia 22202

One of our most popular classes, join us as our expert instructor helps students become confident at the cutting board with the chef’s most important tool. Students will hone basic knife skills and practice the fundamental cuts for vegetables—mince, dice, brunoise, batonnet and julienne—as well as learn some advanced techniques. We’ll also show you how to select a knife that best fits your needs, and share tips for keeping all your cutlery sharp and well maintained at home.

Tickets Are $59/per person
Purchase Tickets Online

BBQ and Smoking Cooking Class
June 30th (Saturday) 2 -5 pm
Culinaria, 110 Pleasant Street Northwest Vienna, VA 22180

TasteDC BBQ 101 Class Video

Summertime and barbecue – they just go together. Chef Mike will discuss brining, rubs and the various cuts and preparation of smoked meats including pork shoulder, ribs and salmon. Come learn how to make and, most importantly, taste some great BBQ and smoked items.

Tickets Are $85/per person
Purchase Tickets Online