Cooking Class FAQ

Rustico Cooking Classes - Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

  1. What's the difference between a cooking class and a private party?
  2. When are your classes?
  3. How many people are in each class?
  4. Do you do classes for just 2 people?
  5. Do you teach at people's homes?
  6. What kind of cuisine do you teach?
  7. Who are the instructors?
  8. Are your classes hands-on or demonstration?
  9. Do you split people up into teams, so I will only get to learn one recipe from the menu?
  10. Will I get my own cooking station and make my own meal?
  11. I'm new to cooking. Do I need to have any special skills to attend class?
  12. Will I get to eat what we cooked?
  13. Can I come alone? Or does everyone come as part of a couple?
  14. Can I drink wine while cooking?
  15. Can I bring my own wine?
  16. Do you serve wine with the meal?
  17. Do I need to bring anything to class?
  18. Do I have to buy or bring an apron?
  19. Do you provide printed recipes?
  20. I am a vegetarian. Can you accommodate me?
  21. What if I have to cancel my class after I make a reservation?
  22. What if the weather is bad in my area, and I need to reschedule due to weather?

What's the difference between a cooking class and a private party?

A cooking class is open to anyone who wants to join; we run cooking classes Mondays, Fridays, and Saturdays, and we determine the date, time, and menu; click here for the class calendar. Private parties are closed to the public: a single group attends, and the party organizer chooses the date, time, and menu. Private parties are for groups of 12 or more (smaller groups are welcome of course, as long as the minimum payment is met).

When are your classes?

Mondays and Fridays from 6 to 9pm, and Saturdays from 12 to 3 pm. Click here for the class calendar.

How many people are in each class?

We typically have up to 22 people per class. Some classes have a higher attendance (30 to 40 people), in which case we split the class up in 2 kitchens for the cooking portion of the class (up to at most 22 people per kitchen); after the cooking is done, both groups come together and eat in one dining room.

Do you do classes for just 2 people?

We can host a private party for 2 people, but it would not be cost effective: for private cooking parties the minimum payment will cover you for up to 12 people, and you get to choose the date, time, and menu. For more information on hosting a private party, click here.

Do you teach at people's homes?

We do not offer in-home service. All our classes are held at our Midtown Manhattan loft.

What kind of cuisine do you teach?

We teach Italian cooking, with a focus on regional cuisines from all parts of Italy.

Who are the instructors?

Our classes are taught by one or more of our talented instructors - click here for information.

Are your classes hands-on or demonstration?

Our classes are hands-on. To ensure all class participants learn the most important parts of a given menu, certain key techniques (such as making fresh pasta dough from scratch) will be executed by all class participants in small teams. In order to facilitate the learning process and allow us to spend more time focusing on the relevant techniques of a given class (say, making fresh pasta from scratch, rolling out flaky pie crust, stuffing ravioli, kneading pizza dough), we chop, prep, and measure all necessary ingredients before students arrive. The onions are minced, the potatoes washed, the flour and sugar measured. This way, we can spend longer mastering the truly essential techniques of Italian cooking.

Do you split people up into teams, so I will only get to learn one recipe from the menu?

No, you will have the opportunity to learn all the dishes on the menu.

Will I get my own cooking station and make my own meal?

No, we do not believe this is the best way to learn cooking. At RUSTICO, everyone will cook together, collaborating on the various steps of all the recipes so that each dish is completed to perfection. In other words, you may be sautéing the onions for a ragu while your friend peels the tomatoes for the same ragu and someone else grates the cheese for the finished dish; everyone participates in every dish to some extent. Some dishes are by nature more interactive than others, and require everyone's active participation; fresh pasta is a great example of such a dish.

I'm new to cooking. Do I need to have any special skills to attend class?

Not at all. We're here to teach, and students of any skill level are welcome. If you're new to cooking, we suggest you ask your instructor plenty of questions; sometimes people are shy about asking questions, and that really is one of the best ways to learn.

Will I get to eat what we cooked?

Absolutely! After the cooking is finished, you will sit down comfortably for a full meal with your class companions, and taste everything we cooked together.

Can I come alone? Or does everyone come as part of a couple?

Some people come alone, others with friends, boyfriends or girlfriends, family, or spouses. We always have a great mix of people in the kitchen.

Can I drink wine while cooking?

Sorry, no; we believe this is distracting and people will start chatting too much rather than cooking and learning. Once the cooking is done and you sit down, we do serve wine with the meal.

Can I bring my own wine?

We are not a BYOB so not outside wine or drinks are allowed.

Do you serve wine with the meal?

Yes, our Wine Director pairs wine with each of our menus.

Do I need to bring anything to class?

An appetite, and if you want, an apron; aprons are the only item we do not supply (we would have way too much laundry to do otherwise!) - but you can buy an apron in class, or in advance of the class by clicking here and making your purchase online.

Do I have to buy / bring an apron?

You can bring your own apron, buy one of our Rustico Cooking aprons, or you can just dress casual and not use any apron; the choice is yours.

Do you provide printed recipes?

Yes, you get a set to take home so you can recreate the menu at home. And if you ever lose your recipes, we'll be happy to email them to you!

I am a vegetarian. Can you accommodate me?

Some of the classes are better suited for vegetarians; these are indicated in our Vegetarian Friendly section. You can let your chef know upon arrival that you are vegetarian, and she will make every effort to accommodate you and serve you a vegetarian dish instead.

What if I have to cancel my class after I make a reservation?

If you let us know at least 1 week in advance that you need to reschedule for regular classes (priced at $110), or 2 weeks in advance for special classes and wine tastings (these are priced higher than $110) - then you will receive a credit for a future class. If you do not provide sufficient advance notice, you can send someone else in your place. For groups of 4 or more, we ask for at least 21-day advance notice.

What if the weather is bad in my area, and I need to reschedule due to weather?

The same cancellation policy stated above applies during November through March, when snowfall and other inclement weather conditions are a possibility. We are just three blocks south of the Broadway Theater district. If Broadway shows are on, classes at Rustico Cooking are on. If you live outside of NYC and are concerned about winter weather conditions hindering your transportation to the city, we suggest selecting a Spring, Summer or Fall cooking class, as we will not be able to give you credit towards a future class with less advance notice than stated above.

For more on our cooking philosophy, please click here.

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