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Dec 16, 2008 06:14 PM

Knife skills class?

Casting about for a diffrenet kind of Christmas gift for my boyfriend, who is an excellent, self-taught cook, I'm thinking about a knife skills class. He always says he doesn't know what he's doing, but he certainly manages. My questions are two: first, anyone have a good experience with such a class, and if so where; and second, will it be too elementary for an experienced cook who will then get bored or ornery? Thanks.

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  1. A while ago that I won a cooking lesson with an excellent local restaurant chef as a raffle prize. I asked to use the whole lesson to learn some new and improve my old knife skills. It was terrific - great fun. The only possible down side was that for a week or so after i could barely look at a vegetable or fruit without wanting to wield a knife - peel that cantaloupe, turn that orange into supremes! It's a thoughtful gift - if there's a way to get a one to one lesson that would be terrific. No matter what, it needs to be literally hands on.

    1. I took a knife class and, as someone who's been cooking for decades, I really thought I'd learn more than I did. But some places do an advanced knife skills class and I'd investigate that.

      1. Oops. I should have said that I live in NY City and the class I'd be looking for would have to be in the city, on Long Island, or elsewhere nearby...

        5 Replies
        1. re: Miss Brooklyn

          I might suggest an excellent knife skills class taught by Chef Norman Weinstein at the Institute for Culinary Education on 23rd St. in NYC.

          1. re: markabauman

            While I have not taken that class at ICE, friends who have, have said very good things about it.

            I think he also has a book out, that I saw at the Strand, maybe that can give you an idea about the level that the class might have.

            There are 4 levels of the class and they don't have to be taken in order, so you might be able to simply have him pick the class(es) that he thinks he'd learn the most or have the most fun in.

            1. re: chocolateman

              I have given and been given gift certificates to the school and so I've been able to pick my own classes in cases where the person giving the gift wasn't sure what I wanted to take. Has been a greatly appreciated gift both ways.

            2. re: markabauman

              I know Norman Weinstein and highly recommend learning from his expertise. In addition to being a very good instructor, he is an all-around nice person. Google "Norm Weinstein, culinary" and read more.

              What a lovely gift you are giving to your bf - hope that he knows he's a lucky guy.

              1. re: Sherri

                I know this is an old thread but I wanted to report that I recently took Norman Weinstein's Knife Skills 1 class and thoroughly enjoyed it. He was an excellent instructor -- very perceptive, on task, yet it was a relaxed atmosphere. I would definitely recommend him and hope to take more classes at ICE myself.

          2. Chef Philip Burgess
            he will do private lessons as well as scheduled classes

            1 Reply
            1. re: misnatalie

              Does anyone know a chef in the boston area who does private lessons in knife skills?

            2. I took a knife skills class at Sur La Table, and learned a lot of basic skills. It was elementary, but knife skills are kind of an elementary function, anyway. I think it was maybe 2 hours long, for $69, and included a 15% off coupon for any purchase I made that day. I learned everything I need to know.