The Chopping Block
Owner Shelley Young opened the Chopping Block in a small cottage in Lincoln Park back in 1997 with the goal of sharing her love of prepping a home cooked meal with others. Since then, they’ve relocated their flagship to an 8,000-square-foot space in the Merchandise Mart. Here, a monthly roster of classes covers everything from knife skills to sushi and pasta workshops (we particularly like the “Know Your Gnocchi” class) and a course devoted to deep dish pizza and calzones—this is Chicago, after all. Classes range from 2-3 hours in length and there’s a fully packed weekend schedule if you can’t make it during the week. For locals wanting to take their kitchen skills to the next level, it’s worth looking into their culinary bootcamp, which teaches professional techniques to home cooks in just five sessions. There’s a second smaller location in Lincoln Square.