Entertaining season is heating up. If you’re ready to brush up on your culinary skills, set the GPS to Litchfield Hills. It’s a lovely drive to the new cooking school at Winvian—the gorgeous Ten Diamond resort with tastefully themed guest houses. How to combine retreat and school?
One part engaging teacher (Executive Chef Chris Eddy, a French Culinary Institute of New York graduate who trained with Daniel Boulud in New York and Sylvan Portay at Alain Ducasse’s Mix in Las Vegas); one part idyllic setting—a historic estate on 113 acres of pastoral countryside; and one part extraordinary hospitality and luxury. Zing is found in the state-of-the-art Viking kitchen at the cooking school, which is located in an attractively renovated antique barn. Bon appetit!
Classes focus on French and Italian cuisine with contemporary flair. The two-hour Classic Classes, held on weekends year round, include a course on pasta (how to knead your pasta dough into the ideal consistency and simmer the perfect marinara sauce, with tips on how to enliven traditional recipes) and a pastry class (covering French classics: macaroons, crème brûlée, chocolate mousse, apple tart and the perfect pie crust). Three-day working retreats (fifteen hours of classes) are also offered regularly. Two intensive six-week programs—one in fall, one in spring—take place once a week for eight hours. Stay in one of the cottages, each designed by a different architect and each with a fireplace. 860-567-0600; winvian.com.