Mountain Town Olive Oil sets up its Next Course by following COVID-19 protocols
Mountain Town Olive Oil is ready to dip back into its Next Course Cooking Classes.
The sessions, which are held at 1 p.m. on Fridays, will follow COVID-19 protocols, while utilizing oils and vinegars offered in the store at 613 Main St., said owner Jessica McCleary.
“We’ve changed the spacing and seating configuration to allow more social distancing,” McCleary said. “We’ve also limited the class size to eight people, which is about one-third of our capacity. We’re all wearing masks, of course, and we disinfect the room.”
The next scheduled class is on July 3, and will cover grilling with marinades and rubs. And like the Next Course sessions in the past, participants will observe, and not do any actual cooking, McCleary said.
The menu will include Korean barbecue wings, chimichurri flank steak, Jamaican Jerk Chicken, harissa roasted summer vegetables and honey ginger balsamic marinated grilled fruit with ice cream from a local creamery.
Classes cost $50, and also come with an optional wine pairing for an extra $15, according to McCleary.
“I recently became an Italian wine scholar, so I’m exploring the world of wine, and that’s been a lot of fun,” she said.
Each class is taught by Deanna Fitchat, owner of the catering company DeeLicious Park City.
“Deanna will send me the recipes and I’ll go through them and do the research of the wines,” McCleary said. “We try to find recipes and cuisines that will appeal to most people, and since so many people are cooking at home these days, these classes will help them change their routines, too.”
Upcoming classes will cover cuisine from the Provence region in France, Sicily and Spain, as well as dishes that can be made from produce and meats found at local farmers markets, according to McCleary.
Classes are open on a first-call, first-served basis, she said.
“We are requiring people to call us to make their reservations,” McCleary said. “Since we’re limiting the seats, we have to actively manage how we line up participants. If things get really busy, we’ll schedule a second class.”
In addition to weekly classes, McCleary and Fitchat host private groups.
“We hosted a birthday party last week, and we’re hoping to do a bachelorette party sometime in July,” she said.
After each session, participants take home a free sample of the oils and vinegars Fitchat used, as well as a discount for any of the Mountain Town OIive Oil products.
“Like the classroom, we are making sure the store is clean,” McCleary said. “We decided to only open for private appointments, so people can shop without the distraction of others.”
McCleary opened Mountain Town Olive Oil after working as a buyer for the Sundance Catalog, and she merged the love of buying things with her passion for cooking and experimenting with recipes when she began offering Olive Oil 101 courses in 2012.
She started the Next Course Cooking Classes last summer, and past themes include paleo, festive finger foods, Irish feast, champagne brunch and after-ski snacks, she said.
“The nutrition aspect is important to me, and extra virgin olive oil is so great for your digestive, brain and heart health,” she said. “I just wanted to share all this with the public.”
Offering Next Course Cooking Classes brings Mountain Town Olive Oil one step closer to normalcy, according to McCleary.
“We’re so hopeful we can keep Summit County and Park City healthy by cleaning, disinfecting and being socially distant, while offering an experience in a summer that isn’t going to have a lot of experiences,” she said.
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