Celebrate the art of cooking with Moonacres Cooking School. Understand, prepare and enjoy fresh, seasonal and hand-made food – experience the simple act of eating seasonally.

Learn specialist skills and crafts from artisans, farmers, local and renowned chefs and, take pleasure in the simple act of a shared table. The school is a living repository not only of food knowledge, but more importantly of food practice. The focus is on the doing, on learning by doing, on being taught by working practitioners.

Enquire with our Concierge Team about a customised group or corporate classes.

Food for Health – Thermomix with Armanda Ho and Stephen Santucci – Saturday 25 May 
Duration: 4 Hours
Cost: $185

In today’s world, where home-cooked meals are becoming the heart of our dining experiences, it’s essential to harness the tools at our disposal.

Together, we’ll explore techniques to maximize flavor, efficiency, and creativity, ensuring that every meal prepared with the Thermomix is delicious and healthy for ourselves and our families. Whether you’re a seasoned Thermomix user or just beginning your culinary journey, this class promises to inspire, educate, and empower you to make the most of your time in the kitchen.

We will embark on this flavorful adventure together and redefine the way we cook and savor meals at home.

We’re talking about maximizing every inch of your Thermomix to whip up dishes that are not just delicious but are also brimming with creativity and ease. Whether you’re a seasoned kitchen warrior or a newbie looking to spice up your cooking game, this class is more about creating abundance in your kitchen.

Armanda Ho
Armanda is a local to the Southern Highlands. With her Singaporean heritage enriching her palette, Armanda’s dishes are a once-in-a-lifetime experience, encapsulating her philosophy that food is a journey of discovery and respect. She encourages mindful eating, savoring each bite, and understanding the story behind your food, from garden to plate.

Join Armanda in celebrating Angelique’s legacy through “Angel Love Cooking – Food with Heart.” Here, mindfulness and nutritious cooking collide, creating a space where every meal is a tribute to love and life.

Stephen Santucci
Stephen was formerly head chef at Vini, Surry Hills and learnt his craft in Italy where he spent a number of years working in restaurants, including under the tutelage of Michelin-starred chef, Salvatore Tassa. He credits his career to his grandparents, especially his grandmother, with whom he recalls fondly making ‘dried sausage’ (they never called it salami) as a child in the basement of her cantina.

The conversation begins at 10 am and concludes with an abundant lunch cooked with Armanda and Stephen at 1pm.

Make the most of your time in the Highlands with an overnight stay at Moss Manor in Moss Vale.

Enquire with our Concierge Team about a customised group or corporate classes.

In Conversation – Community with Phil Lavers, Danielle Alvarez and Ronni Kahn – Saturday 8 June
Duration: 3 Hours
Cost: $75

The mission of Moonacres School for 2024 and beyond is to provide educational and inspirational learning opportunities that supports Moonacres Farm and its commitment to soil health, sustainable farming and regenerative agriculture and the health and wellbeing of our people and planet.

In this “In Conversation” we are talking with Phil Lavers owner of Moonacres Farm, Danielle Alvarez Culinary Director at the Sydney Opera House and Ronni Kahn Founder of OzHarvest and we are talking the power of community.

Here at Moonacres we are big believers in the power of food – not just to nourish us, but to bring us together, and importantly, to connect us with the planet we call home. Now, more than ever, community is at the heart of making a real difference to the health of our planet and, in turn, our own health.

Ronni Kahn AO Founder and CEO of food rescue charity OzHarvest.

Ronni is a social entrepreneur and a passionate advocate and activist, renowned for disrupting the food waste landscape in Australia. She appears regularly in national media, serves in an advisory capacity to government and is a sought-after keynote speaker. Her mission to fight food waste and feed hungry people is supported by some of the world’s finest chefs. Ronni
is an Officer of the Order of Australia (AO) and was named Australian Local Hero of the Year. Her journey is the subject of a feature film, Food Fighter* and her memoir, A Repurposed Life.

Danielle Alvarez, chef, author and Culinary Director of the Sydney Opera House

Danielle is one of Australia’s most celebrated female chefs and was at the helm of Fred’s in Paddington for six years where she achieved numerous accolades. In October 2023, she published her second cookbook, Recipes for a Lifetime of Beautiful Cooking, and is a regular contributor to Good Weekend Magazine.

Phil Lavers owner and farmer of Moonacres Farm.

He and wife Lisa set about creating a farm to produce the best produce possible and that meant it would be organic and follow sustainable ethical practices. Despite some trials and failures Moonacres is now thriving. The Farm supplies some of Sydney’s and regional NSW’s best restaurants including Icebergs, Lankan Filling Station, ANTE, Fred’s, Fontana and Firedoor, sells
at several markets in the Southern Highlands, and of course provides farm fresh food to its own cafés, Moonacres Kitchen and Hearth by Moonacres as well as our school in Robertson.  Phil runs Moonacres as a working example of the future of farming and is a fierce advocate for the protection of the land. He is featured in the book of Soil to Table
by The Land Gardeners.

The conversation will commence at 2 pm with homemade treats cooked at the school, teas from Pachamama and conclude with more delicious food fresh from Moonacres farm, Hearth and Kitschen.

Make the most of your time in the Highlands with an overnight stay at Moss Manor in Moss Vale.

Enquire with our Concierge Team about a customised group or corporate classes.

Food for Health – Tory Crisante Head Chef Quay Restaurant – Saturday 7 September
Duration: 4 Hours
Cost: $200

Troy Crisante is Co-Head Chef of Quay Restaurant, leading the kitchen team with fellow chef Tim Mifsud.

Troy joined the Fink family in 2012 as a fourth-year apprentice, where he graduated through various roles in the Quay kitchen. Troy left Australia in 2014 to work abroad in London, where his career highlights included a stint alongside fellow Aussie Brett Graham at The Ledbury.

On his return to Sydney, Troy worked as Senior Sous Chef at Bennelong where he was awarded Time Out’s Hot Young Talent Award in 2016, and was runner up in the 2016 Appetite for Excellence Young Chef of the Year Award. Troy also took on the role as Culinary Director at the Park Hyatt for a year.

He continued to progress throughout Fink’s restaurant portfolio, working as Senior Sous Chef at Firedoor before re-joining the Quay kitchen as Senior Sous Chef in 2018. In 2019, Troy became Co-Head Chef at Quay where he continues to work and grow under Executive Chef Peter Gilmore.

Great food to me is all about love. This starts with the producer, be it the farmer who spends months or years preparing the soil and land to create incredible biodiversity and a nutrient rich environment to grow vegetables or fruits. Or the fisherman who loves the ecosystem that he harvests, that line catches each and every fish and humanely dispatches and
stores meticulously. It’s the farmers who care for their herd and rotate their fields and allow their animals to forage or scratch and socialize. These are the first steps to creating some amazing food.

All of this love and care is done weeks, months or even years before someone like me receives the ingredient so it’s our duty to continue to respect and love the ingredients all the way to the final product on the plate. One of my biggest responsibilities at Quay is to teach this ethos to all our chefs. I think as chefs we sometimes can get caught up in the technique or the skill of the chef and lose touch of the magic of a perfectly ripe, lovingly grown ingredient.

At Quay we always try to champion our producers, there is even a page on the menu that has a list of some of our closest producers. In a world where mass production of food is becoming more and more prevalent its more important than ever to celebrate the good guys who are looking after the land and our bodies.

Troy will join us for an evening of conversation and food, cooking some of his favourite recipes using Moonacres produce for a dinner around our table

The conversation will commence at 3 pm with dinner at 6 pm.

Make the most of your time in the Highlands with an overnight stay at Moss Manor in Moss Vale.

Enquire with our Concierge Team about a customised group or corporate classes.

Understand, prepare and enjoy fresh, seasonal and hand-made food - experience the simple act of eating seasonally.

The opportunity to learn the art and craft of food, in all it's forms, is the offering of Moonacres School.