From May 6 – 10, guests of Arenas Del Mar Beachfront & Rainforest Resort can start with rainforest and beach excursions and stir in cooking classes with one of America”™s top young chefs, add a pinch of wine tasting, and finish off with organic coffee and Central America”™s best dark rums.
Chef Steven Howells from Philadelphia”™s famous Blackfish Restaurant will be on site for three days of gourmet cooking, dining, tasting and relaxing. And of course guests are invited to be completely hands on!
For $330 USD per person, the Guest Chef event includes three gourmet dinners, two cooking classes, coffee, rum and wine tasting sessions. The program also includes a guided tour of Costa Rica”™s famous Manuel Antonio National Park, located right next door to the resort.
Room rates are being offered at $189 USD for an Ocean Breeze Superior Room and $371 USD for Ocean View premium suites, a savings of 30 per cent, for all participants of the resort”™s guest chef program. Optional tours for those wanting to work off the extra fine dining or relax even further in the resort”™s spa can be arranged with the onsite concierge.
For the dining experience, Chef Howells will create three dinner menus inspired by the abundance of local ingredients such as freshly caught seafood, grass-fed beef and a large variety of tropical fruits and vegetables. And Arenas Del Mar”™s guests are in very capable hands. Howells began working in restaurants at the age of 16, starting as a dishwasher and working his way up. He attended the widely respected restaurant school at Walnut Hill College. A move to San Francisco had him working under Chefs Quinn and Karen Hatfield at Cortez, later following them to Los Angeles as their sous chef at Hatfield”™s, a critical darling that was awarded a Michelin star. However, Philadelphia called him home and he joined Chip Roman at Blackfish in 2010 as Chef de Cuisine.
Blackfish opened in 2006 and was named ” Best Restaurant” in Philadelphia Magazine’s 2011 ” 50 Best Restaurants” issue, where it was described a, ” flat-out fantastic; sophisticated without being overbearingly avant-garde, pretty and fresh without being precious; the perfect restaurant of the moment.” It has earned a coveted Three Bells: Excellent review from The Philadelphia Inquirer’s food critic, Craig La Ban, who most recently named Blackfish among the area’s top five BYOBs for 2012.