Five Ways to Get Cooking

binaalimentari_smallThis year, we’re not risking any dinner party disasters–and neither should you. Kick off the holiday entertaining season by studying up with local chefs at Bina Osteria, Radius, The Butcher Shop, Taranta, and The Elephant Walk, all of whom are offering cooking classes and demos across the city. Check out these gems, and get cooking for a crowd.

Holiday Classes at Bina

Bina Osteria/Alimentari is holding seasonal cooking classes and workshops every Saturday at 2 p.m., now through December. This weekend’s workshop is an olive oil tasting on Oct. 24, followed by candy making for Halloween on Oct. 31 , and wine and cheese pairings on Nov. 7. There will also be other November classes on Scotch and holiday pies, and December classes on gingerbreads, cookies, and more. Most of the classes are free, and you can bring the kids.

Bina osteria/alimentari , 581 Washington St., Boston,, 617-357-0888

Learn How to Butcher at The Butcher Shop

Every Saturday at 2 p.m., Barbara Lynch’s cleaver-wielding meat pros will explain how to select quality cuts, then conduct demonstrations on how to prepare them. You’ll gain insider tips and new recipes, and enjoy tastes from the kitchen. Each lesson is 20 minutes, with a new class offered every week; topics range from veal to lamb to turkey for Thanksgiving.

The Butcher Shop, 552 Tremont St., Boston, 617-423-4800,

Group Bonding at Taranta

To put a twist on your annual holiday party, book a group cooking lesson at North End Italian/Peruvian favorite Taranta. All you need is 15 co-workers, friends, family members, or fellow foodies. Each group will be divided into teams and headed by a visiting chef to guide you in creating a five-course meal from scratch.

Taranta, 210 Hanover St., Boston, 617-720-0052,

Holiday Classes at Radius

Radius will kick off a series of cooking classes on November 7. The topic: “Holiday Survival Guide.” The series will continue on Dec. 12 with a visit from Via Matta at Radius, and then in January, they’ll do a class on “One Pot Winter Dishes.” After each class, guests can sit and enjoy the meal they’ve just learned how to prepare, accompanied by a wine and beer pairing.

Radius, 8 High St., Boston, 617-426-1234,

Cambodian Cooking at The Elephant Walk

The local masters of Cambodian fusion cuisine are teaching the masses the tricks of their trade. Oct. 24 features a demo on game birds, followed by “All About Chicken” on Nov. 7 and “Cambodian Comfort Food” on Nov. 14. On Dec. 5, guests are invited to celebrate the arrival of Le Beaujolais Nouveau.

Elephant Walk, 900 Beacon St., Boston, 617-247-1500; 2067 Massachusetts Ave., Cambridge, 617-492-6900,

-Angela Giannopoulos