PTC even offers a recipe deck, complete with illustrated instructions on 30 different small dishes, that you can purchase as party favors.
601 Minnesota, SF. (415) 441-3595, www.partiesthatcook.com
Though the independent kitchenware store hosts a variety of cooking classes, the cornerstone of its educational program is Essential Knife Skills, held monthly in the gorgeous, spacious teaching kitchen at the Katherine Michiels School. The concept of the course is to teach basic safety and techniques for wielding a cook's most important weapon, with each of up to 10 people getting to practice at their own station (and getting one-on-one attention). A bit more formal than the private cooking classes, the course is divided in half by a lovely cheese-and-cracker break. Although it's geared toward and useful to anyone, this seems like an ideal class for the intermediate cook who wants to develop the ability to cook more efficiently and beautifully. (Parents take note: the company Apron Strings [415-550-7976, www.apronstringssf.com] also hosts classes for kids at this lovely location.)
1335 Guerrero, SF. (415) 647-2665, www.cooksboulevard.com
Like Dellas, chef Marcus Gordon wants to teach that cooking should be fun and "anybody can do it." The native New Yorker hosts small classes (limited to five people) in the remodeled kitchen of his Noe Valley home, offering hands-on experience, tips and tricks, a shared meal after the class (including a cocktail but no drinking during class), and even food to take home. Most importantly, he wants his students to realize they can make better-than-restaurant cuisine at home and to enjoy his recipes of foods "that really jump around on your tongue."
29th St. (between Church and Dolores), SF. www.foodwizsf.com