On any given night at Gordon's Fine Wines & Liquors, guests might hear staff instructors share their favorite French wines or introduce a Speyside scotch. They might also see guest sommeliers, local brewers, or winemakers discuss the production regions and flavors of their most cherished varietals. For more than 75 years, Gordon’s has been a beacon for such talented flavor enthusiasts, recruiting a team of specialized instructors that has earned the alcohol emporium the title of Massachusetts Beverage Business 2012 Retailer of the Year. These professionals have never tired of spinning out lessons—touching on wine education, beer and spirits, cooking, and wine-and-food pairings, which immerses visitors in how to successfully marry cheeses and wines without their parents getting all bent out of shape.
Yet apart from the knowledge spread therein and the discussions bubbling with poignant enthusiasm behind the shelves, Gordon’s also serves as a supplier. Its shelves abound with hundreds of wines—including kosher wines—from every continent except Antarctica, more than 500 types of craft beer, and 300 single-malt scotches.
Master hummusmith Ahmad Yasin doles out zesty lesson plans along with his family-recipe lamb-stuffed grape leaves. With a culinary philosophy that emphasizes the organic relationship of cook and cuisine, Ahmad guides burgeoning food-foodee relationships from their spicy mohammarah honeymoon to the golden anniversary of moist lemony-walnut cake. Catch a glimpse at a culinary world you might master with Ahmad's catering menu, which includes such edible edifications as baked kibbeh, which packs lean ground lamb, pine nuts, garden-fresh herbs and spices, and homemade yogurt in an envelope of golden cracked wheat or a regally red Royal hummus dip (shammandar) whipped from beets, sesame tahini, chickpeas, garlic, and lemon juice and stirred with a jewel-encrusted scepter.
The concept for Savory Square Bistro developed "after years of successful 'Friday Night Bistro Night' dinners as part of Chez Boucher Cooking School," according to Hampton–North Hampton Patch. This concept stuck and the cozy, Old World-style eatery continues to share an address with the culinary training center, allowing diners to indulge in rustic meals inspired by French countryside cooking, Asian flavors, and seasonal New England ingredients. For an extra bit of homespun charm, the bistro's chefs invest a bit of extra effort into their recipes by hand cutting each order of frites, making boursin cheese, and curing salmon in in the kitchen.
Even though crisp white linens adorn each table, the intimately lit space is decidedly casual. A painted mural of a provincial village swaths one large wall, complementing the room's mustard-yellow and sunset-orange accents. Various bottles of wine fill the cubbies in the mahogany-hued cube shelves that flank the mural.
Since 1982, Sea To You Sushi's deft chefs have traveled across the region doling out fresh, meticulously constructed sushi rolls at colleges, businesses, hotels, and country clubs. They cull an extensive supply of ingredients at their store, tapping into the well-stocked stash to guide nascent sushi-smiths through the art of constructing maki and nigiri rolls during Sushi School sessions.
The mobile gourmands also cater private parties, regaling revelers with custom menus and war stories about ferocious clumps of seaweed. Die-hard sushi fans can join Sea To You Sushi's C2U Sushi Club, which grants member discounts and special access to the company's facilities.
Whisked together by chef Barbara Lynch, Stir molds culinary minds during weekly demonstrations. The intimate gatherings squeeze 10 students in around a talented chef, who shares tips and techniques while preparing the evening’s menu. Each class focuses on a topic, such as a specific type of food or cuisine from a faraway region, and servers move about topping off glasses of wine.
New Hampshire Bartending School offers aspiring libation-concocters the training to become professional bartenders and veteran mixologists a chance to hone in their craft. With the first deal, you'll get 32 hours of classes at New Hampshire Bartending School's premises, learning the ins and outs of drink-making from instructors with more than 30 years of bartending experience. This course can be completed either during the day Monday–Thursday, in the evenings Monday–Friday, over four Saturdays, or over two full weekends. The second deal compacts the course into an intensive two-day on-premises class, (currently scheduled from 5 p.m. to 10 p.m. on Mondays and Tuesdays), while the third deal gets you a similar experience off-premises, with the focus solely on drink-making and lacking only the unlimited practice time offered on-site at the school. Upcoming off-premises courses will be held in Orono, Portsmouth, and Concord, and they will take place on Friday evenings and Saturdays during the day. With these courses, you'll get inside info on the secret to concocting a soul-reviving martini, extensive training on how to serve alcohol safely, access to the government's underground vodka reserves, plus the confidence to create more than 100 drinks on your own.