Making Team Building an Everyday Priority

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If your team is experienced and hard-working but its performance has been "hit and miss". You may find the team has lost some of its energy and motivation and morale is beginning to drop. You can get people back on track by exploring some team-building strategies and activities. Team building is about providing bonding time that your people need so that they can work in harmony. But, to be truly effective, it needs to be a continual process, embedded in your team and business culture.

There's a place for one-off team-building exercises, but they need to have a clear purpose, such as improving a particular skill and must be well designed to avoid conflict. In this article, you can explore how to use team-building activities and exercises as part of an ongoing strategy for developing a strong and effective team.

Getting Started with Identifying Your Team’s Needs

The first and most important step when planning team building activities is to identify your team’s strengths and weaknesses. Start by asking questions to identify the root of any problems. 

  • Are there any conflicts within the team?
  • Do they need to know one another better?
  • Is poor communication affecting the team progress?
  • Do people need to learn to work together, instead of individually?
  • Does the group need a morale boost?

Making Team Building Part of Your Business

Regular team-building sessions are one way to strengthen the bonds within your team, but they are not a shortcut to success. Instead, you need to make team-building part of your team thinking. Think about the team-building potential of routine workplace activities. You can use the four strategies to develop your team’s strength, cohesiveness and effectiveness:

1. Get to Know Your Team

Your team is made up of people with different needs, ambitions and personalities. Getting to know your team, and helping them to get to know each other, can build a happy, trusting team.

Hosting an evening drink is an easy way to start to get your team members mixing and mingling. Attending social events such as cooking classes is a great way to build relationships. People will more likely to open up and reveal more of their personalities in a relaxed setting. We think sharing aspects of your personal life increases your likability, as it shows others that you can be an empathic, compassionate and authentic manager.

2. Work Toward a Common Goal

You can unite your team by inspiring them to get behind a shared vision or goal. Having an identified destination can prevent individuals from pulling in different directions, which is frustrating and ineffective. Creating a plan can provide your people with a written definition of the team’s purpose and goals. You can find strategies for bringing a team together to achieve a particular goal.

3. Develop Strong Team Skills

Your team needs to develop the right skills and competencies to achieve its goals. Developing stronger skill sets, and matching your people to the roles best suited to them, can result in a more able, more motivated team. Chances are, as more and more people work from home or remotely, you could find yourself managing a virtual workplace. It can be hard to get to know team members who have limited meeting face-to-face. Time zones and cultural differences can present challenges when considering team building activities or strategies for virtual teams. It is possible to stay in regular and effective communication with virtual team members, given the wide range of available online tools. However, the key to building an effective team lies more in how its members to meet face-to-face than in the technology they use.


Team building can only occur when relevant and timely activities that address specific needs are part of your business. One-off exercises can help with this, but they are not a shortcut to success. The purpose of team building activities is to motivate your people to work together, to develop their strengths, and to address any weaknesses. So, any team-building exercise should encourage collaboration rather than competition.

Be sure to incorporate team building into your workplace. For example, get to know your people better, work toward common goals, develop their skills, and make the extra effort to connect with your virtual team. In this way, you'll build a firm foundation of purpose and trust that you can add challenging events appropriately.

Making Team Building an Everyday Priority
Team Building Cooking

Team Building Cooking

Take your team out for hands on cooking class inspired Asian Restaurants. The subtle variations by cuisines and the...

Duration 3 Hours

From AUD $165 Book now


Team Building Planning With a Budget

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Quite often someone has an idea about team building. However, they may not get the budget. So they would spend a great amount of time lobbying people to support their idea. The first thing would be to work out your budget with your boss or financial manager. You may ask yourself question of what the range or total budget allows you to do this activity. 


Team building works great when you all know each other or you may experience in communication issues at work or you might just want to have fun with it. These are all perfectly good reasons. But you need to know what that reason is in order to run the event effectively.

Lack of direction is what makes so many people dislike these exercises so much. It feels pointless, and that makes it awkward.


Your group get together to enjoy a hands-on cooking experience with plenty of entertainment to prepare a social cook-off party. This class is perfect for clients or work colleagues cooking together looking to ignite their culinary passions. 

Lunch-time – great for a shorter team catch up over lunch with some cooking involved.

Afternoon – who does not want to have an afternoon off. Catching up with work colleagues for a few beers or just having some cooking challenges with your workmates.

Evening – great fun after-work event. You can break up your week or do that on Thursday or Friday night.


  • The Social Cook-Off can bring so fun and team building corporate cooking events and the extensive selection of cooking classes. Recipes will be streamlined so the team can put their amazing dishes together - i.e our staff will do some preps.  
  • Master Class Cooking is great for a small team who likes to take their time and learn to master a recipe or a menu in a social setting. It would work for a team of up to 16 people per class. 
  • Team Cooking Challenge will give you the best competitive cooking experience like no other. As seen on TV, full of suspense, high-energy and fun. Teams collaborate together to plan, race, cook, compete and win. Everyone creates high-quality dishes which will be judged on taste and presentation


If you’re looking for team building cooking in Melbourne, then we’re happy to help. We have a range of cooking class experience you can choose from.  

Your team is unique, and so the same team-building exercises aren’t going to work on all of them. That’s why we offer all sorts of classes!

The next time you have a team-building exercise, don’t go into it unprepared. Instead, take the time to really think about what your team will enjoy.

Make sure that your team enjoy hands-on activities, create stories and perhaps learning something new. If you need some help or suggestions about throwing great team building events, give Chef Ha a call ON 0408 217 899 today and he will able to tell you what would be best for your next team cooking event.

Team Building Cooking

Team Building Cooking

Take your team out for hands on cooking class inspired Asian Restaurants. The subtle variations by cuisines and the...

Duration 3 Hours

From AUD $165 Book now
Dumpling Party

Dumpling Party

Do you love dumplings but don't know where to begin your Dumpling Party? This cooking class will take the mystery out...

Duration 2 Hours

From AUD $109 Book now

Planing A Perfect Hen Party

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Here we have a few tips and tricks for your hen party planning

#1 Speak To The Bride 

It is important to communicate with her because she knows her friends and It’s likely you want to keep the celebrations a surprise but it’s important to at least have a rough idea of what the bride is expecting. Take a look at the questions below that will help you plan the perfect do for your best friend.

#2 Home Town Or Travel

Your bride might like the idea of a hen party somewhere hot and sunny. Others would much rather something more local. See what the bride would like to do – it doesn’t have to mean spoiling the surprise! Either way, you want to check the following

  • What type of budget per head and minimum number?
  • Do you have the minimum and the maximum number of guests?
  • What activities do you want to plan? 
  • Are there any places you would particularly like to go?
  • See if the bride has any favourite cities that she would really like to visit.
  • Do you want to go away for one night or two?
  • What is important to you?
  • See what is the most important thing to the bride – is it that she goes to an amazing location or hotel? Or would she prefer something more low key and budget-friendly so everyone can come?

# 3 Invitation 

This is important to put down the key person names and their availability so you can plan the date. You can set up a Group Chat or Facebook Group. Let the hens know the preferred date and consider giving them an indication of the budget you are working towards so they have time to decide whether they can come.

# 3 Location and Accommodation

You will need to decide on a Location and find accommodation including an estimated cost per person. Once you have a rough idea of how many people can make your chosen date, it’s time to start researching locations and accommodation.

# 3 Select Activities

Once you have a set location in mind you can start to plan your activities. It may be worth considering the guest list and check out if anyone with any special requirement such as allergy or health issue or anyone within the group who is pregnant? It may have an effect on the type of activities you choose.

#4 Make Plan With Details

Once you have a set plan and costs in place, you can put all these details to the group. In our experience, it’s much easier to go to a large group with a decided plan so everyone knows what today. So long as you, the bride and the other bridesmaids are happy then it’s likely you have a great plan!

#5 Confirm Your Booking

You might get a few dropouts once you have a set date and price for the hen party. So once you have confirmed numbers make it very clear that you are booking on the basis that everyone who has said they will come is actually going to be there. Let them know the cancellation fee or charge if you know.

#6 Collect Money

Let the hens know how to pay their share and a deadline you are always likely to have a few late payments so we recommend booking using your credit card and then giving the hens a deadline that is earlier than you actually have to pay, this way you will have all the funds to pay on time. Alternatively, you can ask a supplier like Otaokitchen can give you a private link so people can pay for their service.

#7 On the day issues

Now you may want to think about transport if your hen party is far away then consider whether everyone will travel together. If you have hens coming from all over the country it may also be easier for everyone to be responsible for getting themselves to the location and time.

#8 Delegating

Now all the big things are booked, it’s time to get onto the fun stuff! If you have some hens who are eager to help with planning then there are a few tasks you can delegate to them. Planning hen party games or finding hen party accessories for the bride. Decorating the hen party house or hotel room? Ordering hen party t-shirts? Choosing hen party sashes? Creating hen party bags?

#9 Send them a reminder 

You might want to send the hens schedule, plan and location again a week before the event date so they can come handy for contacting an emergency if required.

#10 Happy Hens Day

Planning a party can be a lot of pressure so make sure now you have done all the hard work, relax, have fun and enjoy the party!

Melbourne Ultimate Hens' Cooking Party

Melbourne Ultimate Hens' Cooking Party

Nothing will bond the ladies in your bride tribe more than the Melbourne ultimate hens' cooking party. We've got a...

Duration 3 Hours

From AUD $125 Book now
Melbourne Ultimate Bucks' Cooking Party

Melbourne Ultimate Bucks' Cooking Party

Booze, partying and falling over is certainly all well and good. It's changing as men want different experiences....

Duration 3 Hours

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Best Ways To Thank Your Team?

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This is probably the best one but you'd be surprised that not many managers to express gratitude to their team. Importantly thanking your staff is free but might be harder to do that you need to find some time out.


Sometime you can make your staff super happy if you just let them to do the work from home. First they think they can control their life a bit better with personal and family obligations. You just need to learn about your staff if they can get the deadlines. Taking a day of less commuting to work can be a a stress reliever for few people.


Remember holiday season can be super stressful. The good news is that with online purchase and other things. You can give your staff vouchers like this cooking vouchers so they can give them to someone else or use them later one. Everyone could join a cooking class at later stage and this would save the staff a lot of time to buy gifts for everyone else. This helps to make the gift giving more fun and social. Another option is to help pay for their continuing education.


Your team will be given a sense team bonding and achievement. You can create a personal funny eye catching trophy to give to your team. This is a great way to spark the competitiveness of your team specially if they do one of these team building cooking.


Having trouble finding a personal gift or funny trophy or writing a heartfelt card? Maybe it’s time to go back to the basics with foods. If you’re having a hard time finding unique ways to give thanks to your team, perhaps you can use of one the food experience to connect to them. A genuine and naturally cooking sessions would make everyone a closer relationship. They’ll appreciate the time you took to get to know them, and in turn, you’ll have ample opportunity to touch base with them on how they’re doing. This team cooking is building energies of making a meal together and having a great time!

Team Building Cooking

Team Building Cooking

Take your team out for hands on cooking class inspired Asian Restaurants. The subtle variations by cuisines and the...

Duration 3 Hours

From AUD $165 Book now

Why Cooking With A Group Is The New Entertaining Trend

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Multicultural team celebration

Planning an outing for your team building or hen party with different work mates or involving family members of all ages? For the organiser like you working with different mix can be challenging so cooking experience would be an answer for a group of people. Choose Asian cooking experience and you’ll have a superb range of Asian menus - Thai, Vietnamese, Japanese, Indian, Indonesian and Chinese, with great cooking activity and food and drink options to suit all skills and dietary requirements. Party planner will not need to worry about keeping your team fed, entertained and happy or where they might be. Everyone can cook and enjoy themselves and share some of the good times.

Stress free cooking activity that everyone loved

Cooking is great way to start a conversation with everyone involve. Everyone loves to share their holiday especially when it comes to foods. Think of your cooking class as a family kitchen where everyone help out. You don’t have to worry about getting from one place to another venue. In some of the world’s favourite cooking you’ll reward with new food, yet you can take the ideas to home kitchen too by our online recipes.

Great group value

Plenty of foods and drink are paid for in advance and so are cooking activity and venue. There is no more to pay if you pick up a package that inclusive. if you’re prudent, you can get drink packages to help control costs. A great value with all the trimmings and no unpleasant surprises at the end.

Flexible food for different dietary requests

Most menu are designed with 4-5 dishes to cook together. There are also some options allowance for people with vegan, vegetarian, dairy free, gluten free, no pork, no selfish, no capsicum... We can also stage amazing race food challenge, private chef table, rewards, photography to momento.

Entertainment choice

Where else could you expect a choice of cultural menus that might include Thai, Vietnamese, Japanese, Indian, Chinese, Indonesian and Dumpling? Event planners can ask us for a bespoke menus from our multicultural Australian teams such as Spanish, Mexican or Italian. Your party can expect to be dazzled by their unique and creative foods on the table. 

Planning and booking is easy

Choose your date and time and you’re done. No need to worry about what and where people eat, drink and entertain as we do the rest. Choose the right food next from our menu ranges! You don’t have to worry about food for the fussy eater in your group or whether there’ll be enough to keep everyone entertained. Otao kitchen are expert at group cooking with best package price.

Discover the world

If you want to experience some of the more exotic foods for your kitchen then cooking makes perfect sense. For guests not so comfortable in cooking, these class will give them an easy way out as our chefs are on hand to guide them. That’s a real confidence booster when you’re cooking with chefs.

Cooking Classes for Groups and Team Building

Team Building Cooking

Team Building Cooking

Take your team out for hands on cooking class inspired Asian Restaurants. The subtle variations by cuisines and the...

Duration 3 Hours

From AUD $165 Book now

Hens Party Ideas - How To Plan A Hands On Celebration Party

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The Yoga Hen Party

We love the idea of working out with friends, so why not incorporate this into your hen do? Our favourite Yoga teacher will show you authentic traditional style of yoga, a holistic system of health encompassing the science of body, mind, consciousness and soul. This yogi session will wow not only bride to be but also give a sense of well-being after your yoga session.

Email us as you can book a private session for 2-35 people.Plus the class finishes with great style of posing and pictures. 


The Hip Hen Party Hangout

We found this amazing place where good laddies hang out. Get in there quick if you are celebrating a hen party in Melbourne. Yes that;s right. The key thing about this place is affordability. It has hair, nail and make up choices all bespoke depending on your group.

Email us as you can book a private session for 2-35 people.Plus the class finishes with great style of posing and pictures. 


Private Dining in Richmond

When you just want to get ultimate fun and be as loud as you like, then private dining is the way forward. When in Melbourne we have a venue in Richmond for you. Let us know your requirement we can cater to most of your needs. Think the kinda place that you start off at for a cocktail party, but then maybe a full dinner with Aussie style of family home cook meal or your favourite  and yummy Vietnamese, Thai, Japanese and more dinner to finish the day off. We cook your delicious food and the ‘one-on-one’ service which can cater for up to 18 people in the private dining room, which would be perfect for a hen party.

A Hen Party Nature Based Lodge Stay in Great Ocean Road

The lazy girl’s answer to planning a hen party is our Great Ocean Road package with Alkina Lodge. Based in Moon Light Head. Who doesn’t like the idea of pampering and partying for your best friend’s hen do. Yes please! Take a 2 nights’ stay at an ecolodge, afternoon pampering cooking session plus a glass of fizz on arrival to toast the bride. But it doesn’t stop there, after all that pampering, the fun starts – hello hen-party Great Ocean Walk or food trail tour or helicopter flight over the Twelve Apostles. Throw in the mix a 3-course meal and bubbly and you have one mega hen party sorted for you and all you had to do was email us

A Cooking Class In Richmond For Hens Party

Take your hens party out for hands on cooking class inspired Asian Restaurants. The subtle variations by cuisines and the fresh ingredients that keep the laddies chopping, cooking, wrapping for more.

Enjoy one of our amazing cooking party making amazing dishes from fresh ingredients from one of our lovely packages. We custom your package to suit every style, taste, or budget. With a personalised party planning and program - the only thing that your friends, family members and colleagues will have left to do is enjoy a great cooking party.

If you are looking for civilised hen party with great experiences that last long in everyone memory, join us a Otao kitchen for best hens cooking experiences. Drinks and Canapé can be organised and you will work your way with your favourite Asian menus.

Melbourne Ultimate Hens' Cooking Party

Melbourne Ultimate Hens' Cooking Party

Nothing will bond the ladies in your bride tribe more than the Melbourne ultimate hens' cooking party. We've got a...

Duration 3 Hours

From AUD $125 Book now

Why Teams Teams Cook Together Work Better Together

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Fun has to be part of the lifestyle business like Otao Kitchen Cooking School when they market cooking experiences business. Otao Kitchen started its cooking experience as a team building exercise, it had to be called Rest, Cook, Laugh and Eat. Chef Ha Nguyen says staff would cook at home and bring in food related to their cultural roots or past experience.

What began as an informal gathering took on a more edgy business venture when chef Ha started social cook off venue.  He saw people related their experience with foods. Sound silly? That may be the point. Ha says his clients see the cook-off as a morale booster and welcome distraction from the daily grind of serving customers or doing the same thing in the meeting or corporate hang out. 

Otao kitchen also plan your master chef type of challenge where each team has roughly an hour to plan their meals and take a trip to the Asian grocery stores to find what they need, though some will forage for fresh produce right where they are. Others stay and prep ingredients, cook, and plate their creations. Ultimately, it’s about teamwork, thinking creatively with one another and working under a time and budget constraint. Just like any other startup trying to build a market from scratch.

We asked why we do team buWe create an environment where you have the opportunity to remember why you like your co-workers! 




Team Building Cooking

Team Building Cooking

Take your team out for hands on cooking class inspired Asian Restaurants. The subtle variations by cuisines and the...

Duration 3 Hours

From AUD $165 Book now

Organise the Best Christmas Party and End the Year with a Memorable Experience

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Before you jump into any decisions, you should begin by brainstorming some interesting Christmas party ideas because everyone deserves a cool interactive activity. The following suggestions will help you drop the stress factor and carry on with the merry-jolly spirit:

1. Masterchef meets the office!

Center your party on an exciting activity by booking a hands-on Asian cooking class event where not only everyone will have a lot of fun, but learn a new skill too! Group cooking is a wonderful way to connect and engage your team. The team will work together to whip up the perfect Asian culinary and enjoy delicious authentic Asian meals with complimentary sparkling wine or beer. With Christmas music in the background, some festive decorations, plenty of Asian food advice and good company, Otao Kitchen will be the perfect venue for those who are up for an interactive cooking event. Contact us today and let us do all the organising! Click here to view the cooking class options:

2. Something out of the box

Something out of the box such as enjoying the Escape Hunt Corporate Event experience, a great way to see how people think and solve some mysteries together. Click here for more details:

3. How about heading outdoors and take part in the Amazing Race?

Another perfect way to work on your teamwork skill in a dynamic way. Click here for more details:

Other factors to think about before booking:

Don’t forget to set the date, the guest list, the budget, any rewards or recognition prizes you want to present. Enquire now to get a tailored quote!

Work Christmas Party 2020

Work Christmas Party 2020

Finding ideas for work Christmas party ideas in Melbourne is no mean feat, so we've taken the pain out of it by...

Duration 4 Hours

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Team Building Activities

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Whether your team member has been to Asia, are planning to, or simply love the great flavours of Southeast Asian and Japanese Cooking we invite your team to explore of Australia’s most popular cuisines right here Richmond Melbourne.

We have a focus on organic and local ingredients which are sourced from within Victoria Street and our own backyard where possible for your team building cooking.

Our training kitchen is designed with home cooks in mind, as we feel cooking in a commercial training kitchen is unrealistic! We want the skills and dishes you learn to be fully transferable to your own home. This is not a cooking show on TV – it’s your show and your way, an unforgettable experience that will stay with you for a lifetime.

Team building cooking and social cooking classes are intimate with a maximum of 8-16 people per class. This allows our chef to spend as much one-on-one time with you as possible. All classes are hands on – Get in and get your hands dirty! Experience the thrill of creating wonderful and tasty dishes that you have made yourself.

Corporate and group class bookings are also available and are perfect for team building, social club activities, new product launches or client and media events. Plus it is a great place for intimate private parties with both indoor and outdoor classes.

So whether you’re a competent cook or a beginner with basic skills, OTAO’s classes are designed with you in mind. Immerse yourself in the flavours and freshness of Vietnamese cuisine. Get creative, have fun and enjoy your experience with OTAO Kitchen!

Team Building Cooking

Team Building Cooking

Take your team out for hands on cooking class inspired Asian Restaurants. The subtle variations by cuisines and the...

Duration 3 Hours

From AUD $165 Book now

Eating Guide – Japanese Restaurants in Melbourne

| 1 rating

Hakata Gensuke

168 Russell Street, Melbourne, 03 9663 6342 | 4/860 Glenferrie Rd · (03) 9819 2558

Hakata Gensuke is a Japanese noodle shop located at 168 Russell Street in Melbourne CBD. The business has two Japanese restaurants in Melbourne. They are specialized in broth noodle soup and Tonkotsu Ramen and Tsukemen. Chef Kousuke Yoshimura started Hakata tonkotsu ramen to Melbourne. No booking so just need to line up. We love our best ramen experience here.

Izakaya Den

Basement, 114 Russell Street, Melbourne, 03 9654 2977

The underground basement combines industrial with Japanese cartoon mascot – Master Den. They serve small bites – Japanese tapas dishes ready to share for the table. This is one of few Japanese restaurants in the area take booking for lunch and group 5-20 people. Their classic dishes are den chicken, sweet corn kakiage, tuna tataki, grilled pork belly with Japanese sake, beers and Victorian wines. We love their Scallops with wasabi oil hit.


Ground floor, 1 Flinders Lane, Melbourne, 03 9639 9500

This Kappo-style eatery where you pick from a list of 40 ingredients and let chef Kentaro Usami create five, seven or nine Japanese courses. This is Japanese eatery that serves crumbed quail legs, caviar-dotted pearl meat, snapper, tofu and sweetcorn, and Japanese style tartare with lobster, salmon, sea grapes, crunchy black sesame crumbs.


Lower level, Collins Place, entry via 56 Flinders Lane, Melbourne, 03 9654 8933

Kenzan first opened its doors in 1981 and are known for our wide selection of sushi and a la carte menu for both lunch and dinner. Try agedashi tofu with mushrooms and ginger or ethereal chawan mushi packed with seafood and crisp vegetables. 


396 Bay Street, Port Melbourne, 03 9646 2296

Request seats at the counter if you want to watch Hokkaido-born owner-chef Motomu Kumano prepare sashimi and sushi that goes beyond the familiar. Try crisp school prawns with garlic salt, and prising Tasmanian periwinkles in sea urchin garlic butter from their shells.


4 Lord Street, Richmond, 9429 5180

Tucked down a one-way street in Richmond is Minamishima, the most intimate Japanese dining experience in Melbourne. Omakase involves placing faith in the integrity of the chef. There is no a la carte menu; this is a journey through a progression of courses with the utmost focus on texture, balance and appearance, as decided by the chef.


3 Church Street, Hawthorn, 9853 6002

For more than 21 years we have been tempting Melburnians with contemporary Japanese flavours meticulously prepared from the freshest ingredients. Their menu encourages shared dining whereby traditional techniques are combined with tastes and textures. Try crunchy-springy prawn dumplings dipped in green tea salt. 

Tempura Hajime

60 Park Street, South Melbourne, 03 9696 0051

Situated in Park Street in South Melbourne, it maintains its Good Food Guide award as an one Chef Hat Restaurant and has so since 2008. Highly recommended. Try their prawns and urchin roe stuffed scallops

Japanese Cooking Master Class

Japanese Cooking Master Class

Inspired with simplicity and popular foods of Japan. Brilliant for things to do in the weekend, gift voucher or...

Duration 3 Hours

From AUD $185 Book now

Best things to do in melbourne on a rainy day!

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Here is from Richard Cornish of the Age's recommendation 

Victoria Street is known as Little Saigon, with scores of cheap and cheerful Vietnamese restaurants, all of Melbourne professing one as their favourite. People also come here to learn how to make great pho, Vietnamese pancakes and ca kho to (fish in caramel sauce) by booking into Otao Vietnamese cooking school under chef Ha Nguyen. It could be a market tour followed by a class or a hands-on masterclass. Teaching groups are small with three-hour classes starting from $119.

Read more:

The Social Cooking Party

The Social Cooking Party

Our cooking experience is a great way to bond people by cooking, eating and sharing great stories. Have a fun,...

Duration 3 Hours

From AUD $125 Book now