The Cook School

Frequently Asked Questions
Answers to the questions
 we’ve been asked most
 frequently over the last
 20 years

We gathered everyone at the School together and jotted down the answers to the questions we are most frequently asked. You’ll find the answers to everything that people have asked us the most over the last 20 years below. If you can’t find an answer to your question, then get in touch - call us on 01877 389 900 or email us at info@nicknairncookschool.com.

Cooking experiences

How many people will be on my cooking experience?

We have maximum of 24 people on our 1 day experiences, depending on your experience, some classes have fewer people (12). If you’re lucky enough to be attending a Just You and Nick Experience - it’s just you (or you and your partner) and Nick.

What time do cooking experiences start and finish?


Your cooking experience start and end time will be confirmed on your booking confirmation. You can find this information in your account online in the ‘bookings’ section. If you were gifted a cooking experience, the start and approximate end times should be on your gift booking confirmation. If you don’t have this to hand, look up the experience you are attending in the cooking & dining experiences section of our website. The start and approximate finish time will be listed here. We recommend that you arrive 10-15 minutes before your experience starts.

What should I wear?

Our cooking experiences are informal and relaxed so wear what you feel comfortable in. We will provide you with an apron to wear for the day. There will be part of the day spent on your feet at the workstation so we recommend comfy footwear.

What should I bring?

We will provide everything you need for your cooking experience. You might want to bring your phone (or a camera) to capture your finished dishes as they are plated up before you tuck in! Evidence to any doubting family and friends that you were a master chef for a day!

Will I be on my feet all day?

For the demonstrations you will be seated and for the hands on cooking you will be standing. So for a 3 hour experience, you will be on your feet for 30-40 minutes, for a 1 day experience you will spend a couple of hours on your feet throughout the day. If you have any mobility issues, we can provide a stool whilst you cook

Can I come by myself or do I need a partner?

Around 50% of people attend the experiences by themselves and find a fellow cook to partner up with for the day. Others like to come with a friend or as part of a group. There’s no right or wrong and we’ll make sure you are looked after if you are on your own.


How do I get to the cook school?

Please visit the location page for full directions.

Do you serve wine on the day?

We do serve wine with your lunch so if your cooking style is with a glass of wine in hand it’s a good idea to organise transport to and from the school.

Will I be able to take food I have cooked home?

You do eat what you cook on the day. Although quite often you will prepare more food than you eat, particularly on a full day course so you will be able to box this up and take it away with you.

I have booked dinner for the evening after my cooking experience - will I want a big meal after a 1 day experience?

Probably not – you will be finishing your last course of a late 3 course lunch around 4:15pm. We’ve found people generally don’t want a big meal after a day of eating and drinking at the school. Maybe a light supper later that evening.

Will I have a copy of the recipes to take away with me?

Yes – everyone attending a class will have a full copy of all the recipes cooked and demonstrated during the day.

My friend is dropping me off can they stay and watch?

There are no facilities to observe on the day. The day is structured so everyone attending is fully participating. If you are lucky you will cook and prepare more than you eat on the day so you will be able to take home your creation to show off!

My son is a budding chef and is 14 years old can he attend a cooking experience?

Cooking experiences are designed for persons 16 years and over. We do however occasionally offer specific classes for children, for example 10-15 year olds can attend Foodies & Future Chef days – a paying adult must attend with each child.

I have a group of 10 friends and we would all like to come to a cooking experience together is this possible?

Certainly and it’s a great way to spend a day with friends. Call us and we can advise on dates where we can accommodate you.

Allergies

I have an allergy or intolerance, can I attend?

Yes. Please advise us at least 3 days before coming and we will accommodate you as well as the menu allows. If you are unsure if an experience will work with substitutions, please call us and we can advise the best course for your needs. Nuts and nut derivatives are used across a variety of the classes. Even if the menu you have picked does not contain nuts specifically it may contain traces of nuts so we can not guarantee a completely nut free day. Unfortunately we cannot accept responsibility for allergic reactions to any food stuffs.

I am allergic to dairy products?

Provided you contact the school at least 7 days before attending to let us know in what you are allergic to we will in the majority of circumstances be able to accommodate your requirements.

Unable to attend and cancellations

Something has just come up at work and I need to move my booking to another date is this possible?

Yes, it is possible to move a booking to another date, however this will incur a cancellation fee. For bookings more than 28 days notice a cancellation administration fee of £10 per experience will be charged. Between 7-28 days notice 25% of the full fee, between 3-6 days 50%. For no-shows and cancellations of less than 72 hours the full experience fee will be forfeited.

I am not able to attend the experience I am booked onto however my friend can come in my place is this ok?

This is absolutely fine – bookings are transferable. Please contact the school either via email or telephone and let us know the name of the person coming in your place.

I need to cancel my booking?

If you need to cancel a booking, we will first try to accommodate you on an alternative date. If you cannot attend an alternative date, an e-voucher will be issued for the value of the booking and placed in your online account. We do not offer cash refunds.

General

Does Nick still own a restaurant?

The Kailyard by Nick Nairn is at the Doubletree by Hilton Dunblane Hydro, Nick designs the menu and is involved in all staff training and quality control. Nick sold his restaurant Nairns in Glasgow in 2003 to focus his attention on the newly opened cook school.

Is there accommodation at the Cook School?

We do not offer accommodation at the School, however, there are a variety of places to stay in the area, some just a short walk away (Nick’s brother offers luxury chalets on the shores of the lake). Visit the locations page for more information.

Is there are restaurant or coffee shop at the Cook School?

We don’t have a coffee shop as such but the Cook School offers a huge variety of dining experiences from pop-up pizza weekends to Nick’s supper clubs. There are also lots of good places to have a coffee and a bite to eat in the local area.

Online shop

I have just placed an order online when can I expect it to be delivered?

E-vouchers are delivered instantly via email but can also be found in your online account as soon as you’ve completed your purchase. If you ordered gift packaging, in most instances delivery will be within 3 working days.


Products ordered from the online shop will typically be delivered in 3 working days. Orders containing non-gift voucher items will delivered by an independent carrier. If there is no-one to accept the delivery a card will be left for you to arrange an alternative delivery time direct with the carrier. THE CARRIER WILL MAKE A CHARGE FOR THIS SERVICE. To avoid this please choose a delivery address where the order can be signed for. Or contact the School and let us know if there is a safe place or a neighbour that the delivery driver can leave it. Where express delivery is requested orders must be received by midday in order to be delivered the next working day.

Can you deliver outside the UK?

Yes, we will contact you regarding any additional delivery charges and will require payment of these before we can dispatch the goods. Deliveries to Northern Ireland, the Isle of Man and the Scottish Highlands and Islands may also incur an additional charge, which we will contact you about.

I am about to place an order on your website how do I know that my details are secure?

Our website is on a secure server at an https://nicknairncookschool.com - if you check your web browser, you should see a padlock in where you enter the web address - this indicates that you are on a secure server. Our site and processes are fully GDPR compliant and we use the secure online credit and debit card transaction company Sagepay to process our online payments. Sagepay has achieved the highest level of compliance under the Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI). Our security certificate (SSL) is provided by Comodo, one of the most trusted signs on the internet.

Vouchers and gift cards

I have a one day cooking experience voucher / gift card, what does that entitle me to?

A one day gift card or gift voucher will fully cover you to attend any of the 1 day cooking experiences we host here at the school apart from the classes that Nick teaches.


You can pay the difference between the value of your gift voucher / card for an experience of greater value but it can’t be used in part payment for experiences of lower value.


Cooking experience gift cards and vouchers can only be used to purchase cooking experiences and cannot be used to purchase items in our shop.

I have a one day with Nick cooking experience voucher / gift card, what does that entitle me to?

A one day with Nick gift card or gift voucher will fully cover you to attend any of the 1 day cooking experience with Nick Nairn. You can pay the difference between the value of your gift voucher / card for an experience of greater value but it can’t be used in part payment for experiences of lower value.


Cooking experience gift cards and vouchers can only be used to purchase cooking experiences and cannot be used to purchase items in our shop.

I have a 3 hour cooking experience voucher / gift card, what does that entitle me to?

You can pay the difference between the value of your gift voucher / card for an experience of greater value but it can’t be used in part payment for experiences of lower value.


Cooking experience gift cards and vouchers can only be used to purchase cooking experiences and cannot be used to purchase items in our shop.


However if you would like to attend a Nick class you can use your voucher towards the class and pay the balance. Alternatively you can use this card for a lower cost class and the balance will be credited to your cook school account. This can be put towards an- other class or spent in our cook shop.

I have a one day cooking experience with Nick Nairn gift card / voucher but can’t find a date that suits me - can I use it on another class type?

You can but only on a cooking experience of equal or greater value (where you can pay the difference to upgrade). We do refund or credit gift cards or vouchers.

I have a gift card / voucher - does it have an expiry date?

Gift cards and vouchers are valid for 12 months from date of purchase unless stated otherwise (we sometimes extend validity pre-Christmas so customers can shop early - for example, gift vouchers purchased between November 01 and December 31 2019 will be valid until January 01 2021.


Gift vouchers and gift cards must to be redeemed against a cooking experience that takes place within the validity period of your voucher / gift card.


You can check the expiry date of your gift cards and vouchers in your online account at any time.


Please note Cook School gift cards are non refundable and no cash alternative can be provided.

I have been given a cooking experience gift voucher but I do not want it, what can I do?

Our gift vouchers are fully transferable. If you do not fancy coming along to the cooking experience you’ve been gifted, you can let someone else come in you place. Call us for more information on 01877 389900.

My voucher has expired or is just about to expire can I still use it?

At our discretion, it is still possible to use a cooking experience gift voucher past its expiry date, however there is an administration fee charged for every month it is extended past its expiry date. Extending a cooking experience gift voucher can only be done by calling the Cook School on 01877 389 900.