As you may have noticed, I’ve been taking cooking classes recently. I’ve discovered that there are a lot of people who pursue this pastime as a hobby—and for good reason. There’s lots to learn and to taste and the fine camaraderie is a bonus.
Along with my group of five diners, who get together once a month, (we call ourselves Women Who Eat Out), we attended the cooking demonstration sponsored by St. Louis Homes and Lifestyles magazine, featuring the cuisine of Bar Les Frere.
The magazine publisher Suzi Osterloh and husband, Barney, hosted the two-hour event held at Construction Appliance in Fenton. They do seven classes a year and this was the last until next fall.
The menu and preparation were the work of Zoe Robinson, owner of Bar Les Frere and Chef Ny Vongsaly. Vongsaly is also the Executive Chef at Robinson’s other restaurants: I Fratellini and Bobo Noodle House on Skinker.
We commenced our French feast with Potato Blinis, a miniature potato pancake topped with a dollop of crème fraiche and caviar accompanied by a glass of wine. Ahhh…I could get used to that before dinner.
Next came the Cheese Soufflé made from equal parts of Gruyere and egg white and spiced with a bit of cayenne and chopped chives. It melted in my mouth like a cloud of cotton candy.
The main course, Coq au Vin Blanc, was the masterpiece of the menu. The chicken legs and thighs had been slow-braised then poached in a dry, white wine and served with creamy cauliflower puree. The fruity finale was a pear poached in red wine and topped with unsweetened, cinnamon whipped cream drizzled with a chilled reduction.
It was uncertain who the next featured restaurant would be when the classes recommence in September. The dining sessions are a great bargain. We got an informative and amusing demonstration along with a multi-course meal and wine all for $30. Check St. Louis Homes website or email Barney Osterloh at firstname.lastname@example.org for upcoming classes.