Psst... We're working on the next generation of Chowhound! View >
HOME > Chowhound > Not About Food >
Nov 6, 2006 03:45 PM

Williams-Sonoma "cooking classes"

Has anyone ever been to any of these "classes" offered in the stores? A friend has asked if I want to attend one in December, but my assumption is you just sit there and watch the chef prepare - there's not really room for participant hands-on action, is there?

And are they basic classes - more for someone who doesn't really know how to cook? She's asking me to go to a class called "Mastering: Hors d'Oeuvres" - and the apps prepared seem pretty basic to me: "On the menu: White Bean Dip with Herbs and Lemon, Stuffed Vegetables with Herbed Cheese Filling, Chicken Skewers with Spicy Peanut Sauce, Tapenade on Crostini and Bacon and Onion Tartlets"

And, final question - do they upsell you on the W-S items in the store as they use them during the demonstration, the way Pampered Chef does? That's an absolute deal-breaker for me.

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. Yes, you are correct on all counts. I've worked for WS and attended classes as a customer. You do watch, they do sell and for beginners/folks who will spend $$$ on gadgets.

    1. That is the basic story, but it does depend on the chef working the class. They are always demonstration, but some chefs will try to sell products more than others and some will change the stock recipies enought to make tham really interesting. Also, there is a 10% discount on whatever you buy after the class.

      1. I went to one at my local WS and really enjoyed the experience. It was ‘taught’ by a local chef whose store I love. You don’t get to do any hands-on stuff but I did get copies of some of my favorite recipes from his store, which is really cool. That, and you get 10% off anything you buy after the class. Of course every location is different, but no one there was pushing the products. I would check on your local board and see what people say that have been to your local store.

        1. I have to say I would be livid to have them pitch products to me during a class I paid to attend. If they want to pitch to me they can do it while paying for me to be massaged-- and nothing less.

          1 Reply
          1. re: JudiAU

            LOL!!! OK, that would be MORE than worth it Judi. :-)