6 perfect dinner (or lunch) dates for the amateur chef

If the way to a heart is through the stomach, Atlanta's culinary scene has plenty of date options even for those who are still getting the hang of boiling water.

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Sure, surprising a date with a gourmet meal right at home is a worthy goal, but these six Atlanta cooking classes make great date ideas regardless of skill level in the kitchen.

The Cooking School at Irwin Street

660 Irwin St. NE, Atlanta. 404-889-6568.

This Old Fourth Ward cooking school offers classes specifically geared toward couples, but even the general cooking classes would make a great date night. Students can choose from classes like Paella and Sangria or Thai 1 On or learn how to up your grill game. Most classes run $85 per student.

Cooks Warehouse Chamblee, East Cobb and Midtown locations.

Peruse the calendar at this cooking store and find plenty of variety in its date night series, which ranges from steakhouse or seafood classes to regional cuisine that focuses on areas within the United States as well as internationally. Classes generally run between $69 and $89 per person, and include four to six menu items and occasionally a cocktail.

Credit: Tony Annan

Credit: Tony Annan

Hal's Kitchen
4969 Roswell Road, #220, Atlanta. 404-345-9610.

Located a little north of Buckhead, Hal’s hosts corporate team building events, private events and children's birthday parties along with an array of popular adult cooking classes. Recent or upcoming classes focused on Southern Brunch and Mid East Feast, so if it’s variety you’re looking for Hal’s has got you covered. There are classes for most big holiday events too and free recipes on the website. Most classes are in the $65-$89 range.

Barrington Hall

535 Barrington Drive, Roswell. 770-640-3855.

Barrington Hall is a historic mansion in Roswell, built in 1839. But it has a thoroughly modern kitchen and hosts classes on select Tuesday nights. Classes are led by Chef Wendy Gay and each one has a different theme. There’s something for everyone in this cooking series including date nights. Wine is served with your cooking creation. Classes are $50 per person and are super popular so get in line fast.

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Sur La Table

3500 Peachtree Road, Suite 1035, Atlanta. 404-973-3375. 1082 North Point Circle Alpharetta, 678-280-0086.

Visit the Phipps or Northpoint location of this culinary chain store on weekends for their series of classes specifically geared toward couples. "Night Out: French Romance" and "Night Out: The Spice Market" are just two examples of great date nights. Classes are in the $75-$85 range and times vary.

Credit: Jason Getz

Credit: Jason Getz

Atlanta Wine School at Vino Venue
4478 Chamblee Dunwoody Road, Dunwoody. 770-668-0435. 

For those who choose their meal based on the wine they're paired with, Vino Venue in Dunwoody is the ideal destination for a night of food and fun. Every course offering heavily emphasizes wine, offering global themes along with "Everyday Essentials" classes (fortunately, AWS considers pizza and gelato to be everyday essentials). Most classes are in the $69-$79 per person range and, of course, students can expect a healthy pour from the school's wine selection: three different wines will be paired with each meal.