Whole Foods Poplar celebrated the opening of its new cooking school, Salud!, this weekend, with a private Tex-Mex Fiesta dinner on Friday night, followed by the school’s grand opening on Saturday, which included a kid’s pasta-making class and a “Simply Blackberry Farms ” dinner, which benefitted the Cooper-Young Community Farmer’s Market.
The school is offering a variety of cooking classes, from demonstration-style classes to more hands-on skills courses, as well as date-night and children’s classes. The school’s course offerings were pre-selected through August, but Salud! specialist Bri Rogers, who is running the school, is seeking input from the community as to what types of courses people would like to see in the future in order to make the school unique to Memphis.
The classes are affordable, with prices beginning at $39 per person. The school provides an intimate atmosphere, with classes capped at 18 people for demonstration classes and around 10 people for hands-on classes.
I attended the Tex-Mex Fiesta dinner on Friday, which provided members of the local media with a first glimpse of the school and included an abbreviated cooking demonstration. The menu for the evening included appetizers of salsa, guacamole, and chips, with vegetarian black bean tostadas as the evening’s main course. After a brief overview of the cooking school, the school’s main cooking instructor, Jennifer Wilkins, demonstrated how to make Watermelon Ginger Aqua Fresca cocktails and Tres Leches Cupcakes with Fresh Berries (both of which were delicious).
The ingredients for all dishes in all classes will be pulled straight from the shelves of Whole Foods, so if you fall in love with a recipe, you can go purchase all the ingredients right after class.
Register for classes online here or by calling 969-4368. Mention any dietary restrictions (vegetarian, vegan, gluten-free, etc.) when you register.
Here are some pictures from Friday night’s Fiesta!