In addition to the daily activities at Lake Austin Spa Resort, we offer special programs and events to enlighten, entertain and excite. These outstanding programs are offered exclusively to overnight guests with no additional fees.
We provide opportunities for you to learn from award winning chefs and other experts in our unique casual environment. This fun and informative program on all things culinary is offered the second full week of every month. Take a look at some our guest chef recipes.
Amir Hajimaleki, Executive Chef and Owner of District Kitchen & Cocktails and Oasthouse Gastropub, comes from a strong line of cooks. His middle eastern heritage combined with diverse experience has helped him both as a chef and restaurateur. At Oasthouse, Amir and Ali focus on European elevated pub cuisine with a Texas spin – combined with a large variety of craft beers and truly craft cocktails while keeping the
philosophy of supporting local farms and businesses.
Rough Creek Lodge has received innumerable accolades since opening its doors in 1998, and much of its success is attributed to Executive Chef Gerard Thompson. In fact, Thompson was the first employee hired at the Lodge in 1997, reflecting the Lodge’s commitment to culinary excellence.
Since being named Executive Chef and Food and Beverage Director, Thompson has risen to the top, not only in Texas but in the U.S. as well. The prestigious James Beard Foundation tapped Thompson as a rising star chef in the 21st century. In 1999, he also had the honor of cooking for the James Beard Foundation Awards Dinner. In the Dallas/ Fort Worth Zagat Survey, Rough Creek Lodge was the only restaurant to receive scores of 29 for food, décor and service (out of 30). Gerard and his culinary team have also received the prestigious DiRôNA award from Distinguished Restaurants of North America, been named to the top 50 hotels in North America (26th) and 88th in the world from Condé Nast Traveler reader poll and the MOST OUTSTANDING LODGE IN NORTH AMERICA” by CONDE NAST JOHANSENS.
The Bellwether’s eclectic New American menu takes inspiration from Co-Owner and Executive Chef Ted Hopson’s nostalgic memories of cheerful family meals. Growing up in a large Italian household in the Los Angeles suburbs, he developed a reverence for food at an early age, assisting his Italian-born grandmother in the garden and kitchen practically as soon as he could walk.
Tracy Wood Anderson began her cooking career early, showing a natural gift for food. She was only five years old when her parents came home to find a completed lime meringue pie and a spooked babysitter pointing to Tracy saying, “She just did it, I didn’t have anything to do with it!” She’s never looked back. Tracy went on to receive a BA in Studio Art from Scripps College and a culinary degree from the California Culinary Academy. Following her studies she spent 15 years working alongside her husband at his family’s winery, S. Anderson Vineyard.
Over the past twelve years, Woodhouse Chocolate has earned the respect of its peers as well as the regard of the press. Appearing in magazines such as Martha Stewart Living, Saveur, InStyle and several times on Oprah’s O list, Woodhouse has also been names first in the country by Consumer Reports. Most recently, the Huffington Post gave Woodhouse the distinction of the best chocolate shop in America.
Sandra Gutierrez is a food personality, expert on the subject of Latin American cuisine, a journalist and a food historian. Her work has been published in The Oxford American, People in Español, Cooking Club of America, Cooking Pleasures, InStyle, USA Today, NBCLatino, Mamiverse, FOX Latino, Southern Living, and in newspapers across the country.
She’s is credited with discovering a new culinary movement and her book on the subject matter, The New Southern-Latino Table: Recipes that Bring Together the Bold and Beloved Flavors of Latin America & The American South, is on exhibit at The Smithsonian Museum in Washington DC.
Her other books: Latin American Street Food; Empanadas: the Hand-Held Pies of Latin America, and Beans and Field Peas, A Savor the South Cookbook have received rave reviews from both that national and international press, including The Boston Globe, Wall Street Journal, and The New York Times.
Recognized as a leading expert on Latin food, Sandra has presented at the International Association of Culinary Professionals (IACP), and for Book and Food Festivals across the country. She is a regular judge for the James Beard Awards.
Corinne Trang and Eric Asimov will take over our demo kitchen for a fun, informative and engaging food and wine pairing course. Join us during culinary week with our dynamic duo.
Corinne Trang is an award-winning author of nine Asian cookbooks. For over 20 years, her research into eastern food philosophies and practices has guided her as a classically-trained chef and certified holistic health and nutrition counselor. Dubbed the “Julia Child of Asian cuisine,” her specialty is in sharing authentic foods with a focus on health without compromising on flavor. She is also the founder of Liquid Gold Tea, where she teaches tea education, Cha Dao (The Way of Tea) meditation, and therapies, guided through the ancient Chinese tea service known as gong fu cha.
Eric Asimov is the chief wine critic of The New York Times and the author of “How to Love Wine: A Memoir and Manifesto,’’ published by William Morrow, and “Wine With Food: Pairing Notes and Recipes From The New York Times,’’ written with recipes by Florence Fabricant and published by Rizzoli. His weekly column appears in the Food section of The Times. Naturally, he is on Twitter and Instagram, too, @EricAsimov. A collection of his columns is included in “The New York Times Book of Wine,’’ published by Sterling Epicure. Before he started writing full-time about wine in 2004, Asimov wrote primarily about restaurants and food. He created the $25 and Under restaurant reviews in 1992 and wrote them through 2004. He is a co-author of five editions of The New York Times Guide to Restaurants, and published four editions of “$25 and Under: A Guide to the Best Inexpensive Restaurants in New York.’’
Valerie Gordon is a celebrated chocolatier who has been recognized in Food & Wine, Bon Appétit, and Saveur, served as a guest judge on BRAVO’s “Top Chef: Just Desserts “and FYI’s “Man vs. Child, “and appeared numerous times on The Food Network and The Cooking Channel. She co-founded Valerie Confections in 2004 with her life and business partner Stan Weightman, Jr. as a tiny, family-run business with just six flavors of chocolate-dipped toffee. Now a top chocolatier in the country, her business has grown exponentially with a full line of chocolates, petits fours, handmade preserves, cakes, pies, and pastries all incorporating the very best ingredients and offering a delicious spin on the unexpected. In addition to her flagship shop in Los Angeles’ Silver Lake neighborhood, she also celebrates her savory side with contemporary Californian, French inspired breakfast and lunch fare at her two cafes and bakeries in Echo Park and downtown’s Grand Central Market. She wrote and styled her first cookbook, Sweet, which was a James Beard finalist.
Join local favorite musician, Kimmie as she cooks up some delicious recipes and shares some stories and songs.
Singer-songwriter Kimmie Rhodes is a native Texan who calls Austin home. Kimmie’s multi-platinum selling songs have been recorded by such stellar acts as Willie Nelson, Wynonna Judd, Trisha Yearwood, Amy Grant, CeCe Winans, Joe Ely, John Farnham, Waylon Jennings, Peter Frampton, Mark Knopfler and Emmylou Harris. A creative and prolific artist, she has recorded and released a total of sixteen solo CDs, written and produced three musical plays and a catalogue of hundreds of songs, and published a novell/cookbook.