October 17, 2016

Review: Date Night at Uncorked Kitchen

On Friday night, Adam and I had a date night at a really special place: Uncorked Kitchen. Uncorked Kitchen is a unique combo of a wine bar / cooking class studio. It’s at a beautiful modern facility in Centennial, with sweeping views of the mountains and huge windows so you can enjoy the Colorado sun.

A wine bar with a view of the mountains, plus cooking classes on the other side? This is basically my dream spot for a date night.

Adam and I headed down to Centennial after work on Friday, and were pleasantly surprised to find that traffic wasn’t very backed up at all heading south. And by the time we headed home late that night, it was similarly fine – hooray for reverse commuting! We checked in easily at the front desk and got our nametags for class, then headed upstairs to Uncorked’s wine bar.

Very clean, modern aesthetic throughout the facility.

Up at the wine bar, we enjoyed a glass of red wine and a shared hummus plate before heading into class. The Uncorked Kitchen wine bar was really different than the usual dark and cozy wine bars, even though we chose to sit inside rather than out on the expansive deck. The sun was streaming in through the windows making everything light and bright and airy, and Adam pointed out that the stunning sunset views from the deck would make it a great spot for a proposal.

I liked the roasted red pepper and feta hummus best.

The woman who checked us in came up to find us at the bar just before 6:30pm, and escorted us into an impressive modern kitchen down the hall, where we’d take our class. The stone counters and stainless appliances made it feel state-of-the-art – definitely a dream kitchen in which to cook! Adam and I headed to the back of the room to take our seats at a long wooden dining table where a few other members of the class had begun to gather. As we waited for class to begin, we browsed through the delicious-sounding recipe packets at each seat, and started tentatively making friends with the couples around us. No one knew each other, and it was the first time at Uncorked for most of us, so we were all pretty excited for the novel experience!

Our instructor chefs Sarah and Eric kicked off by inviting us to enjoy some cheese and crackers while we discussed our gameplan. Yum – guess we hadn’t needed that hummus plate at the bar after all! But the delicious sights and smells in the kitchen kept me hungry anyway 🙂 After pouring more glasses of wine to keep the mood festive, we washed our hands and broke up into pairs of couples at the various work tables to get started. Chef Sarah demonstrated the proper way to dice an onion, and I opted to do that while Adam started browning the meat for our cider-braised pork.

All smiles because I’m letting him cook for a change 😉

Through each part of the cooking process, Chefs Sarah and Eric would demonstrate what to do just before and then ask if we had questions before we got started. Despite the thorough instructions, I still managed to inadvertently cut our delicata squash into slices instead of rings… whoops! It tasted delicious anyway, and no one else seemed to mind my mistake either. Aside from that bit of absent-mindedness on my part, though, I didn’t notice any other mistakes being made. The class was definitely suitable for beginners who are just learning to cook, and I appreciated how the chefs took the time to come around and correct form or offer tips.

About halfway through the cooking, the whole class took a break to enjoy our fresh-out-of-the-frying-pan appetizer of pumpkin gnocchi. I had never made gnocchi before, so I was most excited to see this process, even though I didn’t think I’d really go to the trouble of making gnocchi in the future. But these were the most delicious gnocchi I’ve ever tasted, so now I stand corrected! The flavor of the gnocchi itself was heavenly, and the brown butter turned into a delicious sauce that, along with the fresh parmesan, provided the perfect finishing touch. I had to drag myself away from the gnocchi platter and remind myself that this was only our appetizer and there was plenty more food to come. However, I definitely have changed my mind about gnocchi being too much work – they weren’t really that hard (just a little time intensive with shaping the dough), and the result was seriously one of the best dishes I’ve eaten in my life. I think I may need to start having gnocchi night at my house where that’s all I make and serve – it was that good! If you’d like to give gnocchi making a try, I found a very similar pumpkin gnocchi recipe at Food Network – so delicious.

We finished our gnocchi (some of us more than one serving…) and headed back to the kitchen for our final bit of cooking. The braised pork came out of the oven smelling delicious, and within another half hour or so of putting the finishing touches on everything, it was time to sit once again and enjoy our main meal. As a side, we started with roasted delicata squash rings with pomegranate molasses – a simple recipe as far as roasting the squash went, but the pomegranate sauce and seeds took it over the top. (And cutting it into rings made it look very elegant – noted for my own future cooking). Our main entree was the cider-braised pork with cran-apple compote. Again, fairly simple in execution, but quite elegant in its complexity of flavors. I definitely think I’ll be making this one again too! And finally, for dessert, an apple spice pound cake with cream cheese icing – which was basically the cherry on top of an all-around perfect fall meal. Amazing!

No pictures of the final products because the food was so delicious I couldn’t wait to dive in!

I will admit – Adam and I left there more stuffed than we would have liked for a date night. But is it really a bad thing if you learn to make such delicious food that you eat too much?? I’ll take it 🙂 Overall, we had an amazing time and spent the ride home talking about what a great evening it was. We highly recommend Uncorked Kitchen for a unique and delicious night out!

Disclaimer: Uncorked Kitchen provided Adam and I free admission to their date night cooking class, but I received no other compensation for this review. All thoughts and opinions (including how ridiculously delicious every single recipe was) are my own, and I’m looking forward to making these recipes again at home 🙂


2 thoughts on “Review: Date Night at Uncorked Kitchen”

  1. I can’t believe how fun this was!!! That said, I’m with you. I ate WAYYYYY too much food. You practically had to roll me out of there Willy Wonka Violet style at the end!

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