Sticky Rice Cooking School, Stirling accommodation review: Weekend away
Mark Chipperfield Nov 12 2014 at 8:56 AM
Sticky Rice Cooking School, Stirling, SA.
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In the early days of European settlement, the Adelaide Hills offered a welcome respite from South Australia’s summer heat and the colony’s wealthiest citizens built fine gabled houses up here and laid out English-style gardens. Many still survive. After a short-lived gold rush in the early 19th century, the people of the hills have devoted themselves to small-scale farming and fruit growing. In more recent years, cool-climate wineries have added to the agricultural mix. There are now more than 50 cellar doors scattered throughout the hills, including Shaw + Smith, The Lane, Bird in Hand, and K1 By Geoff Hardy. Apart from the faux Bavarian charms of Hahndorf, visitors will find many other delightful things in the hills, including challenging hiking trails, historic gardens, wildlife parks and a profusion of cheese makers, craft brewers, olive growers, chocolatiers and other artisan food producers.
Surrounded by native scrub, Sticky Rice Cooking School is a five-minute drive from the township of Stirling. The small complex includes the cooking school itself, complete with demonstration kitchen, dining room and shop, plus three Asian-inspired garden villas. Each villa – named Yoko, Bali and Zen respectively – is immaculately designed, furnished and equipped. We stayed in Zen, which comes with its own professional-standard kitchen, a glamorous almond-shaped bath and a sunny courtyard. The suite is boldly decorated with huge pendant lights, black leather couches, flamboyant drapes and dark-wood veneers. The fridge was packed with all kinds of gourmet goodies, including a cheese platter and a bottle of white wine. The breakfast provisions were equally generous.
Food is at the core of the Sticky Rice experience. The cooking school runs a packed program throughout the year, with classes in Thai, Singaporean, Vietnamese, Indian and Sri Lankan cuisines. Launched in 2013, the school has already earned a national reputation for excellence – previous guest chefs include Tetsuya Wakuda, Luke Nguyen and Poh Ling Yeow. Our teacher was Japanese-born Yukiki Auschutz, who guided us through the subtleties of preparing Thai food. These three-hour sessions are not for gastronomic wimps: we prepared five separate courses, including steamed prawn and pork dumplings and pad thai, and learnt vital new skills, such as how to stop noodles sticking together in the wok. The reward was being able to sit down afterwards and enjoy the fruits of our labour with a glass of wine. Staying on site in a villa is a real treat – unlike our classmates, home was a two-minute walk away.
Adelaide Hills is a friendly, community-orientated place. Rub shoulders with the locals at the Stirling Market, held on the fourth Sunday of every month. You’ll find plenty of edible goodies here, plus jewellery, native plants and hippie threads. Horticultural types should visit some of the famous Victorian-era gardens. Best-known is the Mount Lofty Botanic Garden, which has 97 hectares of magnolias, camellias, roses, ferns and native plants; guided walks are available on Thursdays during spring and autumn. Nearby you’ll find The Cedars, the former home of the great Australian artist Hans Heysen. On display are 200 paintings from Heysen’s private collection.
Need to know
Cost: Weekend Cook and Stay packages from $485 a night (minimum two nights).
Distance: 20 minutes’ drive (20km) south-east of Adelaide.
Children: Yes, in Zen and Yoko. An additional charge of $100 a night applies.
96 Old Mount Barker Road, Stirling, South Australia
PHONE: (08) 8339 1314Uncategorized
Sticky Rice Cooking School’s new luxury B&B Villas won the State award for Small Projects Category in the recently announced 2013 Australian Architecture Awards. The award allows then entry into the national awards which will be announced in November 2013.
The Sticky Rice B&B project by John Adam Architect skillfully complements an existing Asian cooking school in Stirling. The architect challenged the client’s initial project brief and as a result the B&B was located well away from the rear of the cooking school and sited amongst the established garden. The sense of arrival has been now been enhanced and maximum advantage has been taken of the mature pine trees and plantings of the adjoining rear property.
Walled front courtyards heighten the sense of arrival to villas. Colourful enameled steel clad entry gates open onto light filled and seemingly transparent spaces. The sensitively resolved interior and exterior environments reinforce the Asian heritage of the cooking school, with a mix of Japanese, modern Asian and Balinese themed spaces.
New narrow ceiling level highlights and full height window walls provide diverse outlooks from the bedrooms and bathing areas into secluded courtyards framed by the existing pine trees and sensitively themed landscape treatments.
Realised under budget, this project has provided excellent value for money, and has resulted in an extremely satisfied client and unique accommodation experience for visitors to the cooking school.News Reviews Uncategorized
Quinten Long from Australian Traveller Magazine names Sticky Rice Cooking School in the Top 5 Best Cooking Schools in Australia on Chanel nine’s Mornings Show. Footage here for the 28 May 2013 live broadcast naming all top 5 cooking schools.
Sticky Rice Cooking School will be five years old in Oct 2013 and to date has been able to attract an impressive list of professional guest chefs such as Michelin Starred David Thompson, Christine Manfield, Vietnamese Chef Luke Nguyen, amongst numerous other regular Top Chefs who teach 4-5 classes per week all year round.
The school has always specialised in giving a hands on experience for all customers and now offers Spanish and Moroccan and Middle Eastern classes as well as every Asian menu imaginable. Channel 10’s The Living Room’s favourite Spanish Chef Miguel Meastro delivered a superb class at the school in November 2012 and hopes to return again this year to delight more fans.
Recently opened and already named as Hotel of the Week by the Australian Travel and Indulgence are the schools 3 Luxury Asian Villas providing the ultimate foodie retreat in the Adelaide Hills. Guests of the villas can choose to stay in a Balinese Villa, a modern Japanese Style villa ( Yoko) or a decadent and romantic Zen villa which all house state of the art kitchens if you choose to have a private Chef as part of the package.
Rumours have it that the Great Tetsuya will be staying in Yoko villa very soon and gracing the school with his presence!Uncategorized
Our latest Chef to join Sticky Rice Cooking School, TY Bellingham, is making news.
Check out what Ty and David Thompson have to say about the latest Thai Food Recipe Standards being introduced by Thailand.
At the conclusion of his apprenticeship in 1996, Bellingham was hired to work under Michelin-star Chef David Thompson at Sailors Thai in Sydney. Manoeuvring his way up the ranks quickly, Bellingham worked from apprenticeship level to Head Chef, overseeing three restaurants under the Sailors Thai Group.
In 2006, Bellingham was ‘Hatted’ by The Sydney Morning Herald Good Food Awards – one of the highest accolades achievable in the Sydney restaurant scene – for the first time. He went on to receive the same honour three additional times in 2007, 2008 and 2009.
After 14 years at Sailors, Ty moved to New York City to run Kittichai restaurant in the chic Thompson Hotel, Soho. Ty has appeared on the first season of MasterChef, Australia, SBS Food Safari and Sydney Weekender. He is an experienced teacher having hosted cooking classes in Australia, Thailand and the United States.
Since 2013 Ty is back at the healm of Sailors Thai but now he is finding time to visit Sticky Rice Cooking School on a regular basis to teach award winning cuisine.
Ty will be here again on May 17th.Uncategorized
Adelaide Hills Accommodation News Reviews Uncategorized
We have one last chance for keen cooks to participate in one of our special master classes in 2012.
Our Asian Master class including Dinner for Two is on November 3rd 2012- Bookings here
This class is limited to 10 people cooking alongside our Head Chef Brian Smith. You will be preparing a 5 course dinner for your invited guests and then sit down to enjoy matching wines during a long and lingering Saturday evening dinner.
Miang of Southern Rock Lobster with Salmon Roe and Pomello, on Betel Leaves.
Ocean Trout Fillet Steamed in Aromatic Yellow Paste with Sticky Rice Balls
Duck and Mushroom Shui Mai with Black Vinegar Sauce
Seared “Wagu Beef” Fillet with a salad of Crispy fish, Green Mango and Basil and Tamarind Dressing.
Coconut Crème Brulee with Sesame Tuille and Dark Palm Sugar Toffee.
Highly recommended by our past master class participants and lots of master class pics on facebook!Uncategorized