We had a really great time taking a Chilean cooking class in Valparaíso. We met our guide and chef, Vlad, in a coffee shop on Sotomayar Square. We also met our new American friends and cooking buddies Tamara and Chris, who would be joining us for the class. These two are enjoying a very cool 12 month sabbatical traveling all over South America. After a pleasant coffee, we hopped on a local bus to get down to the market.
Vlad is a very interesting fellow. Chef, former marine, mixed martial artists, and lifelong Valparaísian, he taught us about hunting out the freshest fish (in our case the fish was Reineta, and the trick was looking for red under the gills) and we also picked up a bunch of fresh produce, before heading to get some wine and go back to the cooking school perched atop Cerro Artillería. We began the afternoon with a sampling of four Chilean wines and then sat down to slice and dice our ingredients. Safety first!
The menu included pisco sours, ceviche, fresh salsa, empanadas, corn pie, and drunken pears. Also, lots more wine… The food was fantastic, but it was the good company and conversation that made it so fun.
We really did have a swell time, and would heartily recommend the experience to anyone considering it. It was a highlight of Valparaíso.