Want to know the secret to Tipo 00’s silky pappardelle, or the brisket at Bluebonnet Barbecue? Imagine a private Peking duck masterclass with Lee Ho Fook’s Victor Liong, or an afternoon of wine, cheese and charcuterie with French Saloon’s Todd Moses?
The Masters of Dining is a series of masterclasses run in some of Melbourne’s best restaurants by top chefs. There are currently six restaurants involved, including the previously mentioned venues as well as Pastuso and Mister Jennings. More Melbourne restaurants will be confirmed soon, and the program will launch in Sydney in about a month.
The classes are organised by Cooking Booking – a company that curates food and cooking experiences from around the world. Melbourne founder Amanda Vallis noted that while there is a range of cooking classes available in Melbourne, restaurant-based experiences are different.
“I started to think about the sorts of experiences people who love food and cooking would want, and then I thought, how often do you sit at a great local restaurant and think, ‘God, I wish I could recreate this dish at home?’” says Vallis. “To have the opportunity to learn that restaurant’s secrets and recipes … is pretty cool.”
While serious cooking happens, the classes are fun. There are drinks on arrival (and they flow throughout), and after a demonstration and some hands-on learning, you’re treated to a multi-course meal. You leave with recipes and a Masters certificate in the day’s topic – Texan barbeque for Bluebonnet; ceviche for Pastuso; and so on.
“It differs from the traditional cooking-class model because each class is held in that chef’s environment, the kitchen where they cook every day,” says Vallis.
“The chefs also really enjoy that one-on-one interaction with people who would normally just be sitting at a table, and having the opportunity to share their love and their craft.”
The price and dates for each masterclass vary. More information on the Masters of Dining and other masterclasses, including how to book, are available here.