The Refugio Kitchen

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Refugio Paso Robles offers two state-of-the-art vacation rental suites via AirBnB, VRBO, and directly, via the contact form on our own website. Check out the Oak Suite, the Barn Suite, and the ultimate wine country culinary retreat: The entire Refugio House. Cooking class students receive a 15% discount at Refugio, subject to availability; the two-night minimum may be waived for class members.

 

Artisan Pizza Reprise: Hands-On Class - SOLD OUT

with author/Refugio owner Brigit BinnsSunday, February 19th at 4pm

Very special guest Lisa Pretty, owner and winemaker of P.S. Cellars will pair and pour several of her wines from her new brand.

Click here to be added to the waiting list. 
 


Flavor-Building Secrets of a Professional Chef

4 SPOTS OPEN

with Chef Pandee Pearson
Sunday, February 26th at 4pm

Central Coast chef Pandee Pearson shows how to mix rich and vibrant flavors like an artist with a huge palette. Often beginning with a simple sauté, she then layers flavors bit by bit, so that the end result is a symphony of deliciousness. Learn how to stock a pantry with fortified wines, vinegars, oils, salts, peppers, spices, and condiments, so that all that's needed is a trip to the local farmer's market. Plus, use leftover bones, shells, and vegetable trimmings to make stocks and broths that add amazing complexity to braises, soups, and sauces. Stored in your freezer, they are ready at a moment's notice. 

Dishes You Will Learn:

  • Wild & Exotic Mushroom Bruschetta Madeira; Taleggio Cheese, Salsa Verde
  • "Osso Buco-Style" Braised Beef Short Ribs; Hasselback Potatoes, Natural Pan Jus, Herbed Rustic Bread Crumbs
  • Savory Smoked Duck Breast Pain PerduOrange-Scented Port Wine Sauce Gastrique

Special guest, musician/owner/winemaker, Denis Degher will pair and pour several of his award-winning wines Mojo Cellars wines from Domaine Degher.

This is a demonstration class; the fee is $110 and includes a welcome glass of Prosecco and multiple generous tastings of Domaine Degher wines. 

Click here to reserve your spot (and please see The Fine Print, below). 

Attendance will be limited to 14 students.

Come Hungry!
 


Mad Men Menu Reprise

with author/Refugio owner Brigit BinnsSunday, March 12th (Daylight Savings Day!) at 5pm

Sometimes, a fabulously retro menu just seems so right. Can anyone resist these four, ever-popular dishes—these classics-for-a-reason? Treat your friends to the ultimate Don and Betty Draper menu, and no, of course we did not forget the classic cocktail.

Ever in search of new ways to convey melted cheese to her mouth, Binns brings us the throwback Brie en Croute (and shares the easily achievable secret of delicious—rather than forgettable—puff pastry; hint: it's available at Whole Foods, but not at Albertsons). For Steak au Poivre, her technique is different from 99% of the recipes you might find while trolling the internet. After you learn the tasty, super-smart secret, you'll never again wonder what to cook for important guests. Been a while since you poached pears in wine (or, never done it at all?) Hello? This is wine country, people. And the "surprise" in this show-stopping, conveniently make-ahead dessert will wow 'em every time. 

Author of 29 cookbooks (including the Palm restaurant cookbook, Williams-Sonoma's The Cook and the Butcher, Sauce, and Hors d'Oeuvres, plus The New Wine Country Cookbook, Binns knows good steak, great sauce, and (perhaps her favorite food in the world) melted cheese.

Special guest, winery owner Ted Plemons, will pair and pour several of Cass Vineyard & Winery’s highly acclaimed wines.
 

Dishes You Will Learn (and eat and drink):

  • The Perfect Dirty Martini, shaken and poured by "Paso Wine Man"
  • Brie en Croute
  • A Better Steak au Poivre
  • Crispy Pan-Roasted Potatoes
  • Wine-Poached Pears (with a surprise)

This is a demonstration class; the fee is $115 and includes a Dirty Martini and several generous tastings of Cass Vineyard & Winery wines.


Click here to reserve your spot (and please see The Fine Print, below). 

Attendance will be limited to 14 students.

Come Hungry!
 


Artisan Pizza Reprise: Hands-On Class
(back again due to demand)

with author/Refugio owner Brigit BinnsSunday, March 19th at 4pm

Brigit's take on Wine Country pizza is as far from pepperoni and red sauce as Pat Boone is from "Paso Wine Man" (aka Brigit's husband Casey).  In this class, learn the ultimate aspirational dough: a 48-hour cold-fermented, high-hydration concoction, a true boon for serious pizza-heads.

Veteran pizzaiola Brigit doesn't "do" red sauce, as is tastily clear to everyone who's consumed her Calamari and Chorizo pizza with Meyer lemon and wine-braised fennel -- which was featured on the cover of Wine Enthusiast's July 2014 issue (and in a stop-action process shoot, here).

Each student will shape and top his or her own pizza, thus learning to work with this soft dough without tears or tears. Plus learn how to top it lightly—with California-centric ingredients combined in fresh, appealing, and unexpected ways—letting the crust be the star. Now, get ready to be the star of your own backyard. (Note: This class always sells out fast!)

Pizzas learned (and eaten):

  • Rapini, salami, Meyer lemon, and Robiola (or Fresh Mozzarella)
  • Garlic confit, braised red onion, prosciutto, artichoke, and shaved Parmiggiano
  • Potato, radicchio, and prosciutto with fresh oregano
  • Shrimp, green onions, tomatoes, and whipped feta with capers

Author of 29 cookbooks (including Williams-Sonoma's "Pizza,"  "The NEW Wine Country Cookbook: Recipes from California's Central Coast," and the recent Sunset Magazine title "Eating Up the West Coast"), Binns knows her pizza.

Very special guests Kevin & Genoa Riley, owners and winemaker of Proulx Wines will pair and pour several of Proulx's wines.

This is a hands-on class; the fee is $125 and includes a welcome glass of Prosecco and several generous tastings of Proulx Wines

Click here to reserve your spot (and please see The Fine Print, below). 

Attendance will be limited to 10 students.

Come Hungry!
 


Wine Country Desserts 

with L.A. Pastry Chef/Instructor Cindy MushetThursday, March 30th at 5pm

The wine country of Paso Robles shares many similarities with the Mediterranean—a serene yet rugged landscape with rolling hills, olive trees, lavender…and world class food and wine showcasing the farm to table bounty of the region.  For desserts, this means bold dishes bursting with flavors of the season and a sense of place. Desserts that vibrantly reflect this lifestyle are the perfect ending for modern entertaining.
 
Join Cindy Mushet, pastry chef, award-winning author, and James Beard finalist, as you learn to create simple, elegant wine country desserts.  Her career spans 25 years in California, beginning at the iconic Chez Panisse in Berkeley, and spanning the length of California.  Her warm, engaging teaching style has made her a favorite among pastry teachers, and you’ll learn valuable techniques and tricks of the trade that translate directly into your kitchen, where you can apply the knowledge from class to create desserts for all your wine country inspired gatherings.

 
Special guest, winery owner Lola Glossner, will pair and pour several of PasoPort & PerCazo Cellars' highly acclaimed wines.

Desserts You Will Learn (and taste):

  • Crème fraiche panna cotta with rose gelée and red wine strawberries
  • Passion fruit meringue tartlets with shredded filo crust and caramelized pineapple
  • Meyer lemon and candied ginger shortcakes with champagne-citrus compote
  • Bittersweet chocolate soufflé with Earl Grey tea ice cream (make-ahead!)
  • Crepes flambé filled with mascarpone, served with strawberries and rhubarb in an orange-Amaretto sauce
This is a demonstration class; the fee is $105 and includes a welcome glass of wine and several generous tastings of PasoPort & PerCazo Cellars' wines.


Click here to reserve your spot (and please see The Fine Print, below). 

Attendance will be limited to 14 students.

Come Hungry!
 


Parma to Paso: A Voyage Into the Pasta Bowls of Italy  with Villa Creek Chef Tim Veatch, Sunday, April 9th at 5pm

Chef Tim Veatch and his wife Jeriel (Fable Soap Co = our favorite) would spend their entire lives roaming the Italian countryside if they could. Instead, Chef Tim is here on the Central Coast and happy to impart the secrets of pasta-making to our students at Refugio. There is nothing more rewarding than getting your hands into a mass of dough and creating your own delectable pasta shapes! In this hands-on class you will learn and make gnocchi-like potato cavatelli, plus a classic pasta dough that can be made into both pappardelle and the shapes for Pasta Fagioli, aka Pasta Fazool. (Often overlooked, this is perhaps one of the most restorative dishes known to humankind and also a “perfect protein”—a bit like red beans and rice). And Tim will lead you through a “true” Bolognese Sauce: Despite popular belief, this legendary staple requires a milk braise and has very little to do with tomatoes. 
 
Special guest, winery owner Melanie Brain, will pair and pour several of Baker & Brain's highly acclaimed wines.

Dishes You Will Learn, Make (and eat):

  • Potato Cavatelli with Gorgonzola Dolce and Broccoli
  • True Bolognese Sauce with Papardelle
  • Pasta Fagioli
This is a hands-on class; the fee is $125 and includes a welcome glass of wine and several generous tastings of Baker & Brain's wines.


Click here to be added to the waiting list.  We may add a second class due to strong demand.   

Attendance will be limited to 10 students.

Come Hungry! 

 


Dos: Two Girls, Two Grills & Two Paellas 

with author/Refugio owner Brigit Binns and Ali Rush Carscaden of 15 Degrees C Thursday, May 11th at 5pm

Everyone loves paella. It's the perfect vehicle for tasty nuggets of deliciousness from land and sea, and deservedly one of Spain’s most popular—not to mention crowd-friendly—dishes. But did you know there is a version of Paella from Catalonia that substitutes tiny, toasted vermicelli noodles for the classic Bomba rice? It’s called Fideo (or Fideua), and offers a delicious and slightly lighter alternative to the more widely-beloved rice-based version. In this lively class (their second combined-forces cooking class at Refugio), Brigit and Ali will teach, cook (and of course, serve) their two different paellas on matching Weber kettle grills out on the expansive Refugio patio. 

As a bonus, you will first learn a plethora of insider’s secrets of how to construct a gorgeous, instagram-ready cheese and meat platter. Including the bounty of the Mediterranean, such platters are the perfect stand-up first course for a paella party. 

For dessert, we’ll show you how to create a super-chill extravaganza including dulce de leche ice cream, local honey, and spiced almonds.

Ali will pair and pour several special wines specifically chosen to pair with our paella as well as cheese and meat plater.  


This is a demonstration class; the fee is $110 and includes a welcome glass of wine and several generous tastings of specially chosen wines.


Click here to reserve your spot (and please see The Fine Print, below). 

Attendance will be limited to 14 students.

Come Hungry!

 

Brigit BinnsBrigit Binns is the author or co-author of numerous best-selling cookbooks, many of them for Williams-Sonoma. Although she has lived, cooked, and celebrated the pleasures of the table from New York to London to Southern Spain—and throughout the Mediterranean—her heart always remained true to her home state of California. All cooking classes take place in Refugio's state-of-the-art kitchen studio in Paso Robles, which she created with her husband (aka "Paso Wine Man").  Brigit's book The New Wine Country Cookbook: Recipes from California's Central Coast, celebrates the luscious food, award-winning wines, and alluring-yet-unpretentious lifestyle of the fastest-growing wine region in California.

In April of 2015, Brigit's 29th cookbook was released: "Sunset's Eating Up the West Coast; The Best Road Trips, Restaurants, and Recipes from California to Washington."

New Wine Country Cookbook            

 


The Fine Print:  If your zip is in north San Luis Obispo County, you’ll receive a 5% discount. We also offer a 10% discount to active and retired military with ID. Sorry, but due to our small size and location on a private property (in Paso Robles), no refunds can be given, except in the case of a class cancellation. (Future credit will be issued for students canceling prior to 7 days before the class date.)  Cooking class students receive a 15% discount on lodging at Refugio, subject to availability; again subject to availability, the two-night minimum may be waived for class members.  

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