While not managing multiple restaurants, The Stocked Pot and Company Executive Chef Don McMillan has cultivated local TV stardom by hosting a cooking show on NBC from 1986 to 2002. He later appeared on channels as diverse as Hallmark and Sundance, and Turner South and Fox Sports South, with celebrities including Dave Chappelle and Maya Angelou. His son, President, owner, and on-staff wine expert, Andrew, has acquired culinary knowledge from his travels to five continents and more than 28 countries, which steeped him in local traditions, authentic ingredients, and large cauldrons of curry. The Stocked Pot's chef-taught classes cater to all ages, experience levels, and epicurean desires. Aspiring chefs can learn to roll and construct creative sushi, properly wield a knife, or cook poultry. Printed recipes, which can be taken home, help students follow along and finally learn how to spell hors d'oeuvres. A retail store stocks tools to further aid in personal kitchens.
Bucky's Bar-B-Q owner Wayne Preston honed his craft at a young age, spending boyhood afternoons in his father's meatpacking plant and Wednesday nights preparing suppers for his local church. Word about Wayne's saucy ribs and pulled pork spread shortly after he founded his own roadside barbecue stand, forcing him?like the barbecue-sauce barons of years past?to expand his operations to new frontiers. Today, each of Bucky's four locations fashions heaping plates of never-frozen Boston butt, tender chicken, and St. Louis?style ribs in the traditional country style: hand-rubbed with secret seasonings and slow-cooked over a smoky fire of hickory chips. Three housemade sauces garnish slices of juicy meat served alongside traditional sides of baked beans, coleslaw, and sweet potatoes. When they aren't dishing out meals in the restaurant, Bucky's tireless staff serves parties, formal events, weddings, and flash mobs as large as 1,500 people with fully catered barbecue feasts.
Wayne shares his more than 15 years of barbecuing expertise with aspiring grill masters during in-depth classes offered at his Roper Mountain and Donaldson Center locations. Students not only learn the art behind sauces and rub but also get to eat their class materials.
The professional instructors at Raleigh Bartending School eagerly impart their pouring wisdom on casual learners and up-and-coming barkeeps. A four-hour mixology class gives pupils a taste of the tricks and techniques needed for successful liquid slinging in a fun, hands-on environment. The full certification course prepares students to serve alcohol responsibly, maximize tip revenue, and identify and halt bar-joke set-ups before they come to earth-rending fruition. After watching demonstrations from professional instructors, students build their bar-cred with hands-on experience, learning hundreds of cocktail recipes, business skills, and bar setup. After completing an intensive 40-hour course, graduates earn the legal ability to serve alcohol for fun and profit and gain access to the school's job-placement program, as well as the right to serve as official judicator for all small-claims bar bets. Classes operate on a flexible schedule based around student availability.
Beverly's Gourmet Foods' Beverly McLaughlin creates nutritious meals from scratch using only vegetarian and vegan ingredients, olive and vegetable oils, and unprocessed foods. Her kitchen also recycles all of its paper, plastic, glass, and canned products to help maintain an environmental footprint as small and green as a leprechaun's.
The chef's prepared dishes?pistachio crusted tofu and tomato basil pies?can be picked up at Whole Foods, at the Atherton Mill Market, or at the Mecklenburg County Market, which her grandmother helped found in 1938. People who love her food can also try to put together their own versions in Beverly's vegetarian and vegan cooking classes.
In honor of Women?s History Month, Groupon is celebrating an inspiring group of women: business leaders whose companies and brands enrich their communities. Thanks to the dedication and ingenuity of these leaders, local communities across the country are stronger and more diverse.
Shop the Women in Business collection.
Personal chef, caterer, teacher?there's little Chef Barry Francois doesn't do when it comes to food. He helps clients save time or plan for special occasions with custom catering that ranges from elegant brunch dishes to casual comfort food to fine-dining-style plates. In between preparing savory meals, the chef transforms his kitchen into a classroom. Those who feel utterly lost can enroll in the beginners' class, where they'll learn basic knife skills, craft sauces and marinades, and receive a comprehensive review of fresh herbs, including which ones can flush evil spirits from their garbage disposal. More experienced students who are curious about niche cooking styles may find inspiration during the Grilling and Entertaining class, which features demos on light summer sides and grilled meats, veggies, and desserts.
Whether they're teaching kids how to cook or pushing established chefs to explore new horizons, the professional instructors at The City Kitch constantly indulge curiosities for all things culinary. Specifically designed for 8?10 year olds, their Elementary Kids Camp gives kids hands-on experience in the kitchen, teaching them the basic skills of cooking and baking. But not all of the camps are for little kids; a special Celebrity Chef camp is perfect for teens who dream of one day displaying their own cakes in the Louvre. Adults can also hone their chops in courses on French cooking, wines and cheeses, and other specific culinary interests.