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COOKING WITH GEORGE


George Portokalakis is a travel professional passionate with Cretan traditional cooking and food and that is what he is offering. He has cooked all his life following the principles his grandmother, mother and all Cretan mothers taught him. The cooking classes he provides are Cretan traditional methods that focus only on the philosophy of cooking and the principles Cretan mothers follow. His classes don’t provide fancy food but real healthy food cooked with fresh ingredients. Most importantly, everything given is served with love: nothing is better and tastier than food given with love and appreciation. Cretans appreciate most people who travel thousands of miles to come and visit their island. They feel honored. Classes are a kind of spiritual journey as well. Guests not only learn how to prepare different dishes, they gain new perspectives and are able to create new dishes using the same ingredients. His guests have a great time and a lot of fun.
Facts:

  • George has been working in the travel industry for over 43 years but has always had a love and interest in food and the food industry
  • George has had two experiences running his own restaurants and has catered for Cretan weddings as well as running cookery holidays on the island
  • He began offering cooking holidays in response to a guest’s request while working in the travel industry. He has run the holidays for a number of years
  • George’s interest and expertise in vegetarian and vegan cuisine came in response to some guests’ comments that Cretan and Greek food is heavily meat focused
  • He took it upon himself to prove to his guests that Crete and Greece is the perfect destination for vegetarians and vegans, and over the years he has worked extensively with the Vegetarian and Vegan Society
  • George is well rehearsed in vegetarian and vegan diets and hopes to show visitors the richness of Cretan food that he believes can be accessible and enjoyed by all
  • George’s style is friendly, informal, and relaxed. His cooking is often accompanied by a glass of wine or raki
  • He thinks cooking should be a fun activity to be shared with friends and there are no strict rules to his cooking
  • He believes the freshness of the ingredients make the dishes and uses only local ingredients

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