Hello and welcome to Savour!
Savour began as a Wellington-based Meetup group to bring like-minded foodies together over cooking workshops, wine tastings, culinary travel and more.
Thanks for visiting my website!
I started Savour shortly after moving to New Zealand in 2011 and was thrilled to discover a tribe of locals who share my passion for foodie adventures.
Savour has now grown and offers regular cooking classes, food tours to France, and curated feasts where dinner guests learn the stories and history behind their meal. We’ve collaborated with Hippopatamus restaurant at the Museum (now QT) Hotel on a “Dine with Monet” Wellington-on-a-plate event where the chefs recreated recipes from Claude Monet’s life in Giverny; more recently, Sofitel joined Savour to bring to life the era of the Parisian Belle Epoque with an evening of fine dining, cabaret music and culinary history.
To find out more and to sign up to the Savour newsletter for recipes and updates, click here or read on to learn more.
Bon appétit! Wendy
My love of food began like most: in childhood. My American parents thought it would be adventurous to move the family to a new town (or country!) every three years. From tropical Puerto Rico where my mom drove us into the jungle to buy bananas from her local friend, to Canada where we devoured homemade onion soup after ice skating on the frozen lake near our house, I learned that some foods taste so much better in certain conditions.
Without even trying, my parents taught us to eat in season, to eat fresh, organic vegetables. My dad hunted the deer around our property and now regularly visits my sister in Alaska where they live off the land, hunting caribou, moose, and wild sheep. As a teen, I was anti-hunting and used to kick up a huge fuss at the dinner table but now I understand if we're going to eat meat, why not reconsider where it's coming from, how it's raised, how it's killed?
My parents were and still are avid gardeners with a huge vegee patch. This meant fresh rhubarb pies, new potatoes dug right before dinner and served boiled with butter and parsley, vine-ripened tomatoes that smelled as good as they tasted. We picked and preserved the berries and cherries that didn’t make it into my mother’s delicious (and frequent!) desserts. When my parents finally settled in Pennsylvania, our Persian neighbours became close friends and their family feasts ignited a life-long passion within me for Persian and Middle Eastern food, tables laden with colourful, fragrant dishes to share. How I love to recreate similar feasts here in NZ for friends and everyone who comes to my cooking classes!
When I moved to France as a teenager, I fell in love. With the people, the culture, the language—and crucially, the food (though I did end up marrying a Frenchman!). I became so obsessed with France that, once I spoke French fluently, had a French passport and a French husband, I thought I should get a PhD in French literature and art history too! But when I look back all these years later, I realise that the reason I wanted to learn more was because of all those trips to markets and restaurants all over France. I felt connected--to the locals I talked to and bought produce from, to the chefs I chatted to during their break about the best way to cook some crustacean I had purchased and didn't know what to do with (I still have hand written notes from one chef in Montparnasse about how to cook mussels..I was 18!).
Living in New Zealand is a new exciting chapter, even though I've been here with my two teenagers, Max and Lucia, for 8 years now. Shortly after settling in Wellington, I decided to (somewhat rashly in my early 40s!) retrain as a chef. After working in a few top Wellington restaurants, I was offered the chance to manage Crave Cooking School in Lyall Bay where I've had the privilege to work with some of the best chefs in town and run workshops on fermentation,
sourdough, wild food and more!
And...exciting news: recently SAVOUR has taken over operating the cooking school side of Crave kitchen (now rebranded primarily as a production kitchen) which means we've become a cooking school using someone else's venue (for the time being...).
I've always loved gardening and growing my own vegetables, herbs and flowers, many of which I bring along to use in cooking classes. Recently, to increase our growing area, we turned our grass yard into a huge vegetable patch! If the Wellington summer lets us have a bit less wind and some nice sunshine, our tomatoes will blow you away in the early 2020 cooking classes! Watch this space for updates.