Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Rambling: A downtown cooking school?

Posted By on Wed, Dec 28, 2011 at 9:48 AM

A few thoughts on the whole PTC/downtown campus business. I’ve kept mum on the issue, mainly because I don’t have a dog in this hunt. But I have watched it with some interest.

I can see how the appeal of watching chefs cook might be visually interesting to visitors. But the more I have muddled the thought of a cooking school downtown, the more I am convinced that maybe there’s a different direction to be pursued on that lot. I’m thinking if you want to create culinary tourism, create a culinary destination.

There are several of these around. Viking, for instance, has a handful of cooking schools across the United States, the closest one being in Memphis. There, students pay for a one-time class and learn a little something to take home with them. It’s by far not a professional student experience — but I don’t believe the average tourist is looking for that.

COOK IT:  Chef Kevin Belton teaches tourists at the New Orleans School of Cooking.
  • Grav Weldon
  • COOK IT: Chef Kevin Belton teaches tourists at the New Orleans School of Cooking.
One of my must-do activities on almost every trip to New Orleans is to visit and absorb at the New Orleans School of Cooking. I’ve been more than a dozen times over the years, and I always come away with something. But I know some folks don’t bother with notes — they’re just there for the show. I’ve written about my experience in the class. It’s entertaining and you get fed — dinner theater, if you will.

Now, yes, there are some excellent cooking classes offered in Little Rock. Eggshell Kitchen Co. does some fine ones featuring Arkansas chefs. Savory Pantry down in Hot Springs has some outreach like that, too. But to do it hands on downtown… well, there’s another draw.

If someone were to follow through with that idea, I’d suggest they pair the classroom experience with a store featuring Arkansas products and work with area chefs for kitchen tours and the like. I can see the culinary community getting behind something like that. And again, it’d be aimed at bringing more visitors into the downtown area.

There’s my two cents on the matter.

Tags: , , ,


Speaking of...


Showing 1-1 of 1

Add a comment

Subscribe to this thread:
Showing 1-1 of 1

Add a comment

More by Kat Robinson

Readers also liked…

  • In defense of Planned Parenthood and abortion rights

    An op-ed in today's New York Time by Katha Pollitt says what I've been struggling to say about the reaction to the attack on women's reproductive rights launched by means of the undercover videos made by anti-abortion activists.
    • Aug 5, 2015
  • Maddie's Place makes a believer out of a skeptic

    After a long hiatus, I return to Maddie's Place in Riverdale and find the food is a lot tastier than I remembered.
    • Aug 19, 2015
  • The Lemon Cakery is pure bliss

    In the eternal and often epic battle between "cake" and "pie," I normally come down on the pie side of things. The Lemon Cakery puts that rule to the test—deliciously.
    • Oct 1, 2015

Most Shared

  • Department of Arkansas Heritage archeologist resigns

    Bob Scoggin, 50, the Department of Arkansas Heritage archeologist whose job it was to review the work of agencies, including DAH and the Arkansas Highway and Transportation Department, for possible impacts on historic properties, resigned from the agency on Monday. Multiple sources say Scoggin, whom they describe as an "exemplary" employee who the week before had completed an archeological project on DAH property, was told he would be fired if he did not resign.
  • Rapert compares Bill Clinton to Orval Faubus

    Sen. Jason Rapert (R-Conway)  was on "Capitol View" on KARK, Channel 4, this morning, and among other things that will likely inspire you to yell at your computer screen, he said he expects someone in the legislature to file a bill to do ... something about changing the name of the Bill and Hillary Clinton National Airport.
  • Forget identity politics

    Amid the climate of disbelief and fear among Democrats following Donald Trump's election, a fascinating debate has broken out about what's called "identity politics" on the left, "political correctness" by the right.
  • Lawsuit filed against ADC officials, prison chaplain convicted of sexual assault at McPherson

    A former inmate who claims she was sexually assaulted over 70 times by former McPherson Womens' Unit chaplain Kenneth Dewitt has filed a federal lawsuit against Dewitt, several staff members at the prison, and officials with the Arkansas Department of Corrections, including former director Ray Hobbs.
  • Lessons from Standing Rock

    A Fayetteville resident joins the 'water protectors' allied against the Dakota Access Pipeline.

Visit Arkansas

Arkansas remembers Pearl Harbor

Arkansas remembers Pearl Harbor

Central Arkansas venues have a full week of commemorative events planned



© 2016 Arkansas Times | 201 East Markham, Suite 200, Little Rock, AR 72201
Powered by Foundation