The Grocery’s Kevin Johnson is the next chef scheduled to conduct a cooking demo and tasting at L’Atelier Le Creuset, but nobody – organizers included – knows for sure who’ll take the stage in October.
“Our vision was if we built it, they would come,” spokesman Will Copenhaver says. “Then we had to figure out what we would actually do.”
Copenhaver says the cookware’s first public center has been enormously successful since opening in April, but staffers have had to scramble to develop a calendar for the state-of-the-art show kitchen. In 2014, Le Creuset hopes to schedule and announce guest chef appearances at least six months in advance.
Still, Le Creuset has managed to host an event each month, charging guests $50 for the privilege of attending an intimate cooking workshop with a well-known chef; Mike Lata and Ed Lee both led programs this summer.
In addition to upscale demos, the display kitchen’s also served as a backdrop for Le Creuset videos, including an instructional series hosted by Michael Ruhlman, and as a training venue for participants in Share Our Strength’s Cooking Matters nutritional courses and children’s cooking classes. Prior to being invited to Le Creuset, students were stuck in a non-profit space which Copenhaver describes as “a cold, industrial back room.”
The Atelier, located in a former Landry’s Seafood House, has also hosted a dinner for the ambassador from Trinidad and Tobago.
According to Copenhaver, Le Creuset hopes to replicate the Atelier in more of the 77 countries in which the producer keeps offices.
“In places like Japan, we want to have this,” he says.
Johnson will appear at the Atelier at 6 p.m. on Sept. 26. Tickets must be purchased in advance. For more information, check out guestchefserieskevinjohnson.eventbrite.com.