Calling chef Daphne Cheng "inventive" is a bit of an understatement. Before each dinner service, she travels to the market that day to pick up seasonal vegetables. And when she gets back to the kitchen, she throws together tasty, vibrant dishes without following a recipe. She's even created a unique venue to showcase her culinary skills—Suite Threeohsix.
The vegetable-focused fine-dining supper club in a Tribeca loft gathers together a maximum of 16 diners for dinner several times a month. Guests sip wine and mingle with strangers while watching Cheng cook behind a glass wall. The intimate dinners routinely sell out, according to an article in Well+Good, which called Cheng's food "inventive, beautiful, and delicious." But that's not surprising for a chef who has listed clients such as Vera Wang, Alec Baldwin, and Lea Michele on her resume.
Cheng also uses her Suite Threeohsix space to host cooking classes, where she teaches students everything from knife basics to gluten-free baking. For her students who come with absolutely no cooking knowledge, her How to Boil Water class explains which angle to hold the magnifying glass against the kitchen window.
Simon Herfray, a French native hailing from the Vend?e region, is a master's-degree-certified pastry chef and baker. He's whisked and sculpted fine treats for esteemed establishments in the London and New York culinary scenes?Aubaine and Bluebird in South Kensington, Falai and Caf? M Studio in Manhattan, and Bacchus Bistro and La D?fense Bistro in Brooklyn.
At French'Encas, Simon directs his world-class sweetmeat techniques toward kitchens full of apron-wearing students and in-disguise dentists. Whether it's their first or hundredth time gripping pastry bags and whisks, attendees handcraft their very own macarons, chocolate-lemon tarts, chocolate fondant, and full quiche lorraine meals. Some classes cater to advanced students, some cover basics, and others suit all skill levels. And when not instructing students, Simon and his team whip up treats for parties and other events.
It's not surprising that tots become so attached to this modern learn-and-play facility. Here, the dynamic schedule of activities often includes everything from tumbling and ballet to cooking and hands-on science demonstrations. Kids can romp through the jungle gyms, slides, and bouncy surfaces of the center's 1,500 square-foot indoor playground.
Perhaps the most exceptional thing about Citibabes, however, is that it isn't just for kids—while their children are in class (or a supervised childminding session), grown-ups can take advantage of adults-only programs such as parenting seminars and training sessions at the on-site fitness center. In the gym, mommies and daddies get their heart rates pumping on modern cardiovascular machines, reserve personal training sessions, or bench-press strollers filled with dumbbells.
The SoHo club offers a full array of classes, preschool, a tumbling playroom, fitness classes and studio, adult gym, birthday parties, childcare, ongoing family events, workshops, seminars, Junior’s Fresh family friendly café, a juice bar, and more.