Fifteen years ago, Trish O’Neill took her first cooking class and she was hooked! She began cooking inspired meals from scratch and it soon became her passion. Over the next 15 years she traveled for her career, all the while taking cooking classes as a hobby while on her travels. This cultivated the idea that would eventually bring Trish and her talent to Fort Collins to open The Cooking Studio, a place for amateur cooks, corporate teams, kids, couples, and even aspiring bakers to learn, explore, and unleash their inner chef.
The idea would take a lot of preparation to bring into fruition. Trish approached the Small Business Development Center (SBDC) in 2014 to learn about opening a small business. She spent countless hours of training and consulting before successfully launching her business in September 2015.
“We have a lot of fun (at The Cooking Studio) with the kid’s programs, date nights, private parties, corporate events, team building and, cooking competitions”. The classes attract young professionals as well as empty-nesters and has become a very popular environment for everyone to learn new techniques while cooking different cuisines. The relaxed and comfortable environment helps all the students get to know one another.
“Sitting down to dinner in The Cooking Studio is amazing! We have students from all walks of life: ranchers, professors, entrepreneurs, physicians & nurses, scientists, poets, artists, Ph.D.’s, and even a magician and a Police Chief. With all these people coming together to eat a (delicious!) menu created by the Chef and cooked in class, you can just imagine how fantastic the conversations are. It’s an unparalleled experience. And we host classes for aspiring home cooks as young as 8 old all the way up to 90 years old. There is a place for everyone at the Cooking Studio!”
The Cooking Studio has a team of local professional chefs who teach the classes. These talented Chefs share tips and tricks from their restaurant and catering experiences, project manage the cooking, make sure all the recipes come out delicious and that all the cooking activities go smoothly. The typical class size is 12 but can go as high as 20 people.
There are a few rules The Cooking Studio enforces in the classes.
- All food is made from scratch.
- Everything must be delicious.
- No one is allowed to voice an opinion about what other people eat. There is no ‘normal’ way of eating and, in all our classes, we find a menu to fit all the students.
Trish keeps in contact with the SBDC on a regular basis to continue the progress on her business. Since opening in 2015, business is going strong with year over year revenues steadily increasing. In fact 2017 revenues are 60% over 2016! Working with the SBDC has helped keep Trish accountable on an ongoing basis and to be successful.
Want to know more about this culinary playground? Checkout the website at www.the-cooking-studio.com. Which class will help you unleash your inner chef?