Stan Nicolaides often recalls eating at the kitchen table of his “yia yia,” the affectionate Greek term for one’s grandmother. There, he was unable to go play until he’d downed plates and plates of moussaka and gyros. Even then, it was clear he belonged in the kitchen.
Now, Stan makes his own rules while dishing out falafel, kebabs, and gyros named Best Greek Food two years running by SantaBarbara.com. After sopping up creamy hummus with fresh pita bread, guests have Nick whip up a chicken breast with thyme and lemon while he chatters in Greek.
Warehouse Discount Center is primarily a purveyor of home appliances and plumbing wares, although it also hosts in-store cooking classes led by experienced chefs. Amidst an outside grilling theatre, using the finet equipment, Chef masters Craiger Van Zee and Chef JoAnn Hecht teach students the finer points of roasting, grilling, and preparing international dishes. Students are able to sample delicacies created and also take home a new set of culinary skills along with information packets.
Chef Craiger has been in the culinary business for more than four decades and heads up his own educational venture, To Grill or Not to Grill. He has taught more than 3,000 students how to sear and season on the barbeque and enjoys sharing his knowledge with groups of all sizes. Chef JoAnn comes from a teaching and catering background and tailors her classes to complement the seasons.
When Chef Nikki Dailey graduated from The Culinary Institute of America in New York, she spent some time perfecting her craft at five-star restaurants. But those kitchens couldn’t contain her love of seasonal, local, and organic cuisine, so she founded HEATculinary. The business brings her signature style of cooking right to students with in-home cooking classes that focus on fresh ingredients grown nearby and proper cooking techniques. HEATculinary also offers a variety of cooking-themed programs, including personal culinary classes, culinary boot-camp, group events, and catering.
Robotics, archaeology, cooking––6- to 12-year-olds enrolled at Cali Kids Club learn such unexpected skills. Clubs are classified under four different headings: culinary, engineering, geology and excavation, and arts and electives. Kids here have the opportunity to whisk up multicultural dishes in the Tastes of the World club, glimpse shimmery views in Rocks, Gems, and Fossils, and learn woodcraft skills so they can whittle a whole tree from a bigger tree.
The school offers 19 single-session (and occasionally double-session) classes at a time. Seventeen of them remain the same, and two rotate every week. After 10 weeks, a whole new set of 19 classes replaces the previous curriculum. Kids either sign up for a single session or nab a membership card that grants access to one or two each week.