Heat Up Your Myrtle Beach Vacation with Cooking Classes

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Cooking classes might not be the first activity that springs to mind when you are planning your Myrtle Beach vacation. After all, with all the attractions, entertainment, shopping and watersports options available, not to mention the popular activity of relaxing on the beach, something like culinary courses might get lost in the vacation mix.

But with the booming popularity of cooking, such as the growing “foodie” movement and the flood of culinary related TV shows like “Top Chef” and “Hell’s Kitchen”, cooking has become more of an arts and crafts activity than simply a household chore. With that in mind, more and more people are turning to culinary classes as a pastime, every bit as fun and enjoyable as dancing or shopping.

If you and other members of your party are looking to try something a little different during your Myrtle Beach vacation, there are a few opportunities to strap on the apron and create some culinary magic. Learn some tips and tricks you can carry with you to use back home, like the proper way to prepare seafood or cooking with local wines. Here are some options for those itching to get in the kitchen:

Kitchen Capers: Learn basic and advanced culinary techniques from owner Debbie Turner and her experienced staff.  Located at Rainbow Harbor in Myrtle Beach, Kitchen Capers features a spacious and well-furnished kitchen that serves as a classroom for those looking to learn how to cook to those wanting to pick up some additional skills. Kitchen Capers offers sessions for all skill and experience levels, including the Saturday morning “Child's Play” program that teaches the little ones a few kitchen tricks. Courses also provide instruction for international cuisine, baking, desserts and more.

Williams-Sonoma: This national chain and distributor of high quality cookware and kitchen gadgets also offers occasional free cooking classes to reward its customers.  Register for one-hour classes under Williams-Sonoma’s skilled and experienced chefs and culinary experts offering. Learn new skills and taste free samples at the end of the session. Located in Market Common, this store also offers Junior Chef Classes for kids to learn some basic cooking techniques and how to make sweets and snacks. All class sizes are limited so reservations are recommended.

Boom Boom Wine Room: Tucked away in the Northwoods Plaza shopping center on the north side of Myrtle Beach, this upscale bistro is a popular among the local foodie community as a haven for fine food and wine. Originally designed as a wine-tasting room with a limited food menu, the Boom Boom Wine Room has expanded its kitchen operations to include lunch and dinner six days a week (Mondays through Saturdays). The Boom Boom Wine Room has also added cooking classes for children to its lineup in the form of a summer camp. Kids between the ages of 8 to 12 can learn everything from basic kitchen safety and cooking techniques to more advanced skills and the preparation of special dishes. Directed by the Boom Boom Wine Room's expert chefs and staff, the classes provide hands-on learning in a fun setting. The highlight of each class is the tasting party, in which the kids get to sample their culinary creations and serve some to their classmates and parents. The two-hour courses begin at 1 p.m. on Mondays throughout the summer, and one-day campers are welcome with advanced registration.

International Culinary Institute of Myrtle Beach: As part of the Horry Georgetown Technical College’s academic program, this school is geared more toward students who are looking to make a career in the culinary arts. Offering classes at HGTC’s main Conway campus and Myrtle Beach’s Market Common campus, ICIMB offers classes by the semester so this is not the place for amateurs hoping to catch one or two courses. However, if you are interested in becoming a chef and enjoy your stay in Myrtle Beach, this could be an opportunity to combine two of your loves and go to school full-time. ICIMB is also one of the best-kept secrets for fine and affordable dining on the Grand Strand. Under the careful eye of experienced instructors, students prepare food in the bakery, kitchens, and outdoor barbeque garden and serve it to the general public at a reduced cost. Both the Beach Bistro at Market Common in Myrtle Beach and the Fowler Dining Room on the Conway campus are open to the public for lunch.


(Posted: 7/27/15)