The Agrarian Kitchen Cooking School & Farm offers paddock-to-plate cooking experiences in a 19th century schoolhouse at Lachlan, 45 minutes from Hobart in the beautiful Derwent Valley. The Agrarian Kitchen was established by Rodney Dunn and his wife, Séverine Demanet who moved from Sydney to Tasmania in July 2007 to transform the schoolhouse into Tasmania’s first hands-on, farm-based cooking school.
Set on five acres, The Agrarian Kitchen Cooking School is set on a working farm and incorporates an extensive vegetable garden, orchard, berry patch and herb garden, all grown using organic principles. Also in residence are rare-breed Wessex Saddleback and Berkshire pigs, Barnevelder chickens, a flock of geese and honeybees. It grows and uses heirloom varieties of fruit, vegetables and rare breed animals in its cooking classes and also sources ingredients from local farmers, fishermen, gardeners and artisan producers. Cooking classes are led by Rodney Dunn, former Food Editor of Australian Gourmet Traveller magazine and one-time apprentice to Australian chef, Tetsuya Wakuda, as well as a supporting cast of Tasmanian cooks and producers.
Our most popular class is “The Agrarian Experience” held from 9am to 4.30pm / $385pp / includes tea & coffee and sweet treat on arrival + garden/farm tour + foraging for ingredients + hands-on cooking experience + 3-course lunch matched with Tasmanian wines. Maximum 8 guests.
The Agrarian Experience is a celebration of the seasons. You may not realise that each Agrarian Experience class is at least 6 months in the making. Selecting seeds, planting, watering and nurturing the plants to maturity to be harvested on the day of the class. To ensure that you harvest and cook with the freshest and ripest produce possible from our garden each day’s menu is decided upon the day before by Rodney after a stroll through the garden.
This paddock-to-plate cooking experience is suitable for all – those who are qualified chefs, home cooks, those who do not usually cook or just for those who would like to experience our agrarian way of living. The day includes foraging, harvesting, cooking, learning, eating and drinking.
The day begins with everyone in the class donning gumboots and foraging in the garden for the ripest fruit and vegetables. What cannot be harvested from our garden or farm is sourced from local Tasmanian producers. The extensive tour also gives plenty of opportunity to discuss growing plants and The Agrarian Kitchen’s own gardening philosophy.
Once harvesting is complete we continue in the kitchen preparing and cooking together a seasonal feast. The cooking of dishes are shared amongst the group and although you will not individually cook every single dish on the menu Rodney will ensure that you are taught the skills and techniques of each dish. As class sizes are an intimate number of 8 this is your opportunity to ask questions and to learn as much as you would like – you get as much out of the experience as you put in.
Other classes include Handmade Pasta / The Whole Hog over 2 days / The Vegetarian Experience and more.
Please visit our website for all class descriptions, pricing and class calendar.
Advance bookings are essential via our website.
If you can’t attend one of our classes, you can always visit The Agrarian Kitchen Eatery in New Norfolk. The Eatery offers a set-menu dine-in experience and our new Kiosk offers a more casual offering where you can bring the kids and a picnic blanket and sit on our front lawn or take it away.