About Tante Marie’s
Tante Marie’s Cooking School in San Francisco was founded as a full-time school in 1979 and was one of the first schools of fine cooking in this country to offer all-day, year-round classes for people who are serious about cooking well. Students range in age from their mid-twenties to their early sixties.
Graduates from Tante Marie’s have interesting and varied careers. These include chef/owner of restaurants, food writers, cooking teachers, pastry chefs and bakers, gourmet product manufacturers, cookbook authors, personal chefs, and caterers.
In addition to offering Professional Courses for people wanting to begin a career in Culinary or Pastry, Tante Marie’s welcomes interested avocational students in the Evening Series, Weekend Workshops, One-Day Workshops and Cooking Vacations. There are also Cooking Parties on weekend evenings where groups of up to 30 people cook together. The emphasis at Tante Marie’s is in building confidence in the kitchen.
Tante Marie’s Kitchens
Like the great cooking schools of Europe, the kitchens of Tante Marie’s Cooking School are compact and efficient. The School is simple in design, with white tile walls, maple work surfaces, and plenty of natural light. It has two comfortable kitchens, which can accomodate up to 16 students cooking together. One of the kitchens converts to a demonstration kitchen in the afternoons seating up to 30 students.
Tante Marie’s prides itself in cooking with the best quality ingredients that are readily available in the Bay Area. Although the students may be introduced to expensive ingredients such as truffles and lobster, the belief is that the students should be able to master techniques and acquire skills and knowledge that will enable them to cook well wherever they live and work.
There is a warm, friendly atmosphere throughout, and simplicity is an integral part of the lessons to be learned. Fancy gadgets and extravagant ingredients have no place here. Tante Marie’s prefers to establish a mastery of basic, advanced, and creative cooking techniques, using mostly the essential equipment and ingredients found in any experienced cook’s kitchen.
Questions & Answers
What do I wear?
Wear comfortable clothes and sensible shoes for cooking, and anything you want for watching the chef cook. If you are fully enrolled in the Culinary or Pastry course, you need to wear black checked pants and a white chef’s jacket and white apron.
Do I need to bring anything?
You can bring a notebook if you like, we provide recipes and aprons (if you’re cooking). If you are fully enrolled in the Culinary or Pastry course, you need to bring your own knives in culinary, and a pastry bag and tips in pastry.
What do I need to know?
Absolutely nothing. Our students range from those with no experience to old hands in the kitchen. We’re a cooking school. We’ll teach you what you need to know. And we’ll make it fun to learn while we’re at it.
Are the classes at Tante Marie’s suitable for children?
Since Tante Marie’s Cooking School is essentially designed for adults, all children under the age of 18 must be accompanied by an adult.
How do I get there?
See directions if you are driving. If you are taking public transportation, call MUNI (San Francisco Municipal Railway) at 415.673.6864 for route advice. The 15 Third, 42 Downtown Loop, and 30 Stockton bus lines are all very convenient to Tante Marie’s location of 271 Francisco Street.
Where do I park?
Usually there is street parking in the evenings during the week. In the daytime you may want to find a nearby parking garage. Please see parking garages for more information.
What if I can’t attend a class?
Because we have to plan and buy ingredients for the exact number of people in a class, we do not offer credit or refunds for missed classes. You may have a friend attend class in your place. If you would like to transfer one or more classes to a friend, please call the school to let us know.