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Jan 12, 2007 08:18 PM

Food Tour and Single Day cooking classes in London?

I am visiting London in mid-Feb. I'm very interested in taking a food-related walking tour of markets or restaurant kitchens and/or single session cooking class while I am there.

Can anyone make recommendations?

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  1. I strongly recommend Jenny Klinec's classes over at

    As for markets, I'd just turn up at Borough Market early on Saturday morning and have a noodle around.

    3 Replies
    1. re: Howard V

      This sounds like a great suggestion. These classes are all about 70 pounds each. I suppose that's fair, but in US$ that's $140 for a class that's only a few hours long. Are they that good?

      1. re: gochrisgo

        Well £70 sounds very reasonable to a Londoner, but probably doesn't to an American given the exchange rate at the moment (and the fact that things are cheaper in the US anyway). As for the classes, they're very good - Jen knows what she's doing and is a fun and enthusiastic tutor too. Out of the current crop of courses the one with the chef from Les Trois Garcons also looks good. Also check out this for a good description of a class, from a friend of mine who's a pretty mean cook to start with:

        1. re: gochrisgo

          I've been to a few classes in London and I think that Eat Drink Talk are easily the most enjoyable - they manage to be massively informative, educational and great fun. Regarding the cost - the price includes not only instruction but also samples of top class ingredients and a full meal, so I think its pretty good value. Overall, I think that the originality of recipes as well as the high quality of ingredients sets Eat Drink Talk apart - its a new school but already seems to be attracting attention from TimeOut and the like so they're clearly doing something right.

          Borough-wise, early is always best...

      2. Celia Brooks does gastro tours for the American Women's Club from time to time but her tours are also open to the public. See here:

        1. i think leiths in notting hill has some good courses . not sure how lenghty they are .

          1. Divertimenti do decent courses (depending what your interest is, of course) at their shops in Marylebone and Knightsbridge. I think Books for Cooks in Notting Hill used to run courses - anyone know if they still do?

            Borough Market might be a bit easier on Friday, crowds-wise, or else go v. early on Saturday.

            1 Reply
            1. re: SpikeyD

              Books for cooks still run the courses (or they did when I was in there pre-Christmas) but both books for cooks and divertimenti's courses have been full every time I have tried.
              As for borough on friday vs saturday, it is busy both days but I find friday more bearable, only trouble is I have to go on the occasional saturday as there are some stalls that aren't there any other day of the week. Brown and Forrest and the Isle of Wight garlic company for example - then I do get there early and leave before I feel the need to shout at the idiot who has brought their double buggy!
              I have a feeling there is something in the back of timeout's London shopping guide (in the food sectino - I know, shocking) about a walking tour - it also has lots of foodie haunts listed. I don't have a copy but someone else may...

            2. I've been on two Books for Cooks courses. One was excellent (Persian cooking), the other just good. They are very good value as you get coffee, good biscuits and lunch of the demonstrated dishes. Also a recipe booklet. They are demonstration courses, not hands-on.

              1 Reply
              1. re: Jenny Sheridan

                i have been to two classes at eat drink talk. those classes are totally hands-on. i made myself croissant (rolling the dough with butter, shape them, filled them with cocholate and bake theme). the otherr classes was about fish. i cook the best scallop ever. we got to use live diver caught scallops from scolland. yes coffee was served but also amazing champagne cocktail. it is more than a cooking course. it is a whole fun experience were you learned about food, how to cook it and have a great time. i will be for sure back very soon.