Dine with a Chef
Classes & Workshops

Meet Twin Cities critically acclaimed chefs and fellow enthusiasts of seasonal, local dining during a delicious dinner or lunch! In addition to getting cooking tips from top professional chefs, you'll receive recipes, notes and recommendations. You can just sit back, watch the meal unfold, make new friends and dine.



This program features wine tastes!

PinKU Japanese Street Food: Dinner with Sushi Chef John Sugimura (800-08-17-17)
Thursday, August 17, 6:30 p.m. - 8:30 p.m.
John Sugimura, Co-manager, Partner and Sushi Chef, PinKU Japanese Street Food

John and his partner, Xiaoteng, are Minnesotans out to transform the sushi dining experience and recapture authentic Japanese cuisine through the new PinKU Japanese Street Food. A graduate of the Sushi Institute of America, protégé of Master Sushi Chef Katsuya and veteran culinary instructor, John will create a dining experience you are not soon to forget. Through the finest fish and ethnic ingredients, you will be presented with a delicious selection of Japanese cuisine such as spicy tuna on crispy rice, Japanese fried chicken, seared salmon and more! ...and immersed in a unique, cultural educational experience.
Limit 30, Learning Center

register Sold out. Add your name to the waitlist!
$65 member/$77 non-member,
includes Arboretum admission and multiple-course watch-learn-dine-sip experience - plus recipes!


Alcoholic beverages will not be available at this program

*Lunch* with a Chef: Astonishing Apples! (800-09-16-17)
Saturday, September 16, noon - 2 p.m.
Joan Donatelle, Chef, Author, Educator

Join the Arboretum, local chefs, and fellow food lovers for our newest addition: LUNCH! These select meals still boast a generous multi-course menu, but offer a lower price point because no alcohol will be served. Celebrate apple harvest season at this delightful lunch! Joan, an experienced cooking instructor and author of "Astonishing Apples", a cookbook published just last year, will demonstrate and serve some of the exquisite dishes you can make with this crisp, crunchy, healthy, and delicious local fruit. Learn about apple history, Minnesota varieties, and nutrition as Joan takes you way beyond apple crisp! You will leave with a greater appreciation for this humble fruit, a full belly, and handouts with recipes! Joan's beautiful cookbooks will be available for sale and signing after class.
Limit 30, Learning Center
Menu (subject to change)
Apple Rumaki
SweeTango Arugula & Fennel Salad
Porchetta with Roasted Apples and Roots
Apple-licious sweet finish
Limit 30, Learning Center

register $45 member/$57 non-member, includes Arboretum admission and a multiple-course watch-learn-dine experience - plus recipes!

Hot Indian Foods

Alcoholic beverages will not be available at this program 

Hot Indian Foods: Dinner with Executive Chef Janene Holig (802-09-21-17)
Thursday, September 21, 6:30 - 8:30 p.m.
Janene Holig, Executive Chef, Hot Indian Foods

Add a little spice to your evening. Janene and the Hot Indian Foods team started with a bright orange food truck in 2013, and have succeeded in creating genuine yet approachable Indian cuisine for a broad audience- both on the road and in their restaurant. They were named one of the top 8 Indian food trucks in America in 2016! Start your evening by peeking into their food truck and learning more about how these restaurants on wheels are able to create such amazing food in a tiny space. Then sit back and be immersed in the fragrance of a multi-course Indian feast as Janene shares anecdotes, lets you in on the secrets of curry, and maybe even teaches you a few Bollywood dance moves... You will leave with recipes and a new appreciation for both Indian cuisine and food trucks.
NOTE: alcoholic beverages will not be served at this meal.
Limit 30, Marion Andrus Learning Center

register $45 member/$57 non-member, includes Arboretum admission and multiple-course-watch-learn-dine experience - plus recipes!

Sovereign Estate

This program features wine tastes! 

Sovereign Estate Winery: Dinner with Winemaker and Chef Ben Banks (802-10-05-17)
Thursday, October 5, 6:30 p.m. - 8:30 p.m.
Ben Banks, Winemaker and Chef, Sovereign Estate Winery

Enjoy a beautiful fall evening at the Arboretum celebrating local wine and food! Ben will provide a one-of-a-kind experience as both a chef and winemaker, and will give you new insights into the wine created at Sovereign Estate Winery in Waconia. Enjoy a multi-course meal as he shares stories, cooking tips and tricks, winemaking anecdotes and more. You will leave with a handout of recipes and a new appreciation for local Minnesota wine and food!
Menu (subject to change)
Frontenac Blanc , paired with Smoked White Fish Spread with Horseradish in hashed potato cups
La Crescent, paired with Roasted Squash and Honeycrisp Salad with Maple Vinaigrette
Marquette, paired with Pork Tenderloin Plum Mushroom Marquette
Frontenac Port, paired with Local Cheese and Preserves
Limit 30, Marion Andrus Learning Center

register $65 member/$77 non-member, includes Arboretum admission and multiple-course-watch-learn-dine-sip experience - plus recipes!


Alcoholic beverages will not be available at this program 

Manny's Tortas: Day of the Dead Dinner with Executive Chef Manuel Gonzalez (802-11-02-17)
Thursday, November 2, 6:30 p.m. - 8:30 p.m.

Just in time for Mexico's unique and festive Day of the Dead- or Dia de los Muertos, take a gastronomical vacation with Executive Chef Manuel Gonzalez of Manny's Tortas! The Day of the Dead honors and celebrates those that have passed away through decorating graves, leaving offerings of food, and of course feasting. A Mexican native, Manny will guide you through many of the well known dishes of the holiday, as well as some of his signature creations, in this multi-course meal. You and other foodies will see demonstrations of techniques, hear more about Manny's experience as a Mexican Chef in Minnesota, and learn about this unique holiday. You will leave with recipes and an excitement to celebrate the Day of the Dead with your friends and family.
NOTE: alcoholic beverages will not be served at this meal.
Limit 30, Marion Andrus Learning Center

register $45 member/$57 non-member includes Arboretum admission and multiple-course-watch-learn-dine experience - plus recipes!


 This program features beer tastes! 

Winter Dinner with Coalition Restaurant and Enki Brewing (802-12-14-17)
Thursday, December 14, 6:30 p.m. - 8:30 p.m.
Eli Wollenzein, Executive Chef and co-owner, Coalition Restaurant

Cold weather is settling in and we are in the midst of a season of celebration- a perfect season to spend a little more time in the kitchen with friends! Join Eli of Coalition and Enki Brewing for a festive paired menu of winter dishes featuring locally grown ingredients and brewed beer. You will enjoy a multi-course meal while learning cooking tips and tricks from Eli and information about Enki's brewing process. At the end of the evening, you will leave with a full belly, handout with recipes, and a new appreciation for our local cuisine!
Limit 30, Learning Center Harvest Kitchen

register $65 member/$77 non-member, includes Arboretum admission and multiple-course watch-learn-dine experience - plus beer tastings and recipes

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To Register for Class
To register online, click on the "Register" button listed with the class. Or call 612-301-1210 to register by phone. 

Member Perk!
Arboretum Members may invite non-members to attend a class with them at the discounted member rate! Simply register for all participants at the same time in the same order and select the "member" rate for each person at checkout.

Call 612-301-1210
or email:

Cancellation Policy
Registration cancellations must be made two weeks prior to class date in order to receive refund. A $5 processing fee will apply.

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Education Staff Bios
Click here to see brief profiles of Arboretum Education staff members.