Stan and Brenda Strom have more than just dessert recipes decorating their kitchen—although of those, they have hundreds. They also hold multiple blue ribbons from state fairs, with celebrated sweets including a coconut-custard macadamia-nut pie, a dark-chocolate raspberry glacier pie, and a maple-pecan cheesecake, as well as many others. Their beloved business, Blue Ribbon Desserts, got an extra boost toward stardom when it was featured on FoodNation with Bobby Flay.
Chef Strom shares his confectionary skills in multiple ways. He bakes seasonal fruit pies, cheesecakes, and cookies fresh to order and ships them across the United States. He also reveals 60 of his favorite recipes in the Blue Ribbon Cookbook, which is said to smell like freshly churned butter during full moons. And in order to grant fans intimate access to his baking ways, he conducts monthly classes that empower students to create their own pies for family members and friends.
Chandler Cakes' hardworking bakers whip up a smorgasbord of crumbly, sweet fruit-and-spice-flavored coffee cakes, creamy cheesecakes, and colorful creations for birthdays and celebrations. Students of all ages study under pastry chefs during cake decoration classes, while chefs whip up one-of-a-kind triple-chocolate, red velvet, and cupcake confections to order. Party planners go to great lengths to ensure that every birthday and anniversary or school fundraiser leaves behind precious memories, as well as the delicious taste of handmade sweets, with singing telegrams, bake sales, and online shopping and promotional kits.
The Sylvester family had bartending in its blood. Whether it was Uncle Mickey holding court with 40 years' worth of regulars or Tony Sr. mixing one of his signature Skip and Go Nakeds, they exemplified the easy grace and no-nonsense craftsmanship found in a true barman's barman. That dedication to well-poured drinks carried over to Tony Jr., who has spent the last 35 years training mixologists nationwide through the curriculum of his ABC Bartending Schools. Taught behind fully functional bars, his courses educate students in topics ranging from drink recipes and equipment setup to flair moves and alcohol awareness. His schools also emphasize employment; after graduation, students can take advantage of a nationwide job placement service to land gigs in Miami nightclubs, Las Vegas casinos, or the bar cars of Chicago's El trains.
Taras Slipka brings something unique to the cakes that he crafts and decorates: an art degree. Drawing from training in Europe, Slipka uses his subtle, classically trained touch to transform delectable French-style pastries into stunning masterpieces. Dozens of styles and flavors cater to any occasion requiring a formally decorated pastry, from weddings to anniversaries to birthdays. Leaving the actual baking and cake construction out, Slipka's decoration classes use fake cakes. This allows pupils to focus solely on the frosting application, creating lifelike calla lilies or roses, perfect for training your dog to devour your nemesis’s flower garden.
Opened in 2007, Classic Cooking marches under the banner of classic French cooking techniques while using Native American ingredients and dietary foundations. Classically trained French chef and owner Pascal Dionot draws on his extensive training in France, Germany, and Spain to elucidate the finer points of cooking, dining, and fingertip kissing during cooking classes tailored for both career-minded gastronomers and novices. Catering services take Classic Cooking's French–Native American fusion on the road to feed handfuls of hungry partygoers or infinite imaginary friends.
Hall of Fame chef Dominic O'Neill satiates the minds of burgeoning chefs with a carefully curated selection of online videos designed to build from basic skills up to more advanced techniques. More than 250 instructional videos imbue home cooks with a deep set of abilities, and recipes both simple and complex add restaurant-quality flavor to family feasts, holiday gatherings, and the mouths of passing pelicans. Customers also learn related concepts such as proper hand washing and the creation of ice sculptures, which make elegant centerpieces. Lessons are grouped into beginner, intermediate, and advanced topics, and content is intuitively organized so that students can explore the intricacies of tomato sauce or the many ways to defend oneself with a napkin.