Museum of Ice Cream

5 Food Activities to Get You through January in NYC

Escape winter weather with an edible art exhibit, sensory dinner experience and ICE cooking classes.

Museum of Ice Cream photo by Nicole Franzen

Enduring New York’s cold winter days and nights to dine out can be daunting when the heat wafting from your own stove is so tempting, but January 2020 offers plenty of reasons to zip up your coat, get outside and taste more of the city.

An edible art exhibit at a world-renowned museum, the now-permanent Museum of Ice Cream and an ICE alum taking dining into the future are just a few of the interactive, extracurricular ways to extend your culinary education and enjoy New York this month.

Photo by David Chow, courtesy of the James Beard Foundation
Photo by David Chow, courtesy of the James Beard Foundation

Aerobanquets RMX at The James Beard House

James Beard himself would probably be stunned by the way people are eating in his home circa 2020, but that didn’t stop New York-based Italian artist Mattia Casalegno and the Rahi Restaurant Group (Adda, Rahi) from creating a futuristic dining experience on the fourth floor. Extended through Jan. 26, this wholly interactive virtual and augmented reality, multi-course meal is an art installation mixed with a unique dining experience, that’s also part video game. The experience treats four guests at a custom table to a seven-course, experiential meal (vegan and allergen-friendly alterations available) with VR headsets and narration by ICE alum Gail Simmons (Culinary, '99).

$125 tickets, 167 W. 12th Street, SquadUp.com. The James Beard Foundation offers student memberships for $25 per year with student pricing for select events and more benefits.

Darren Bader’s fruits, vegetables; fruit and vegetable salad at The Whitney

The Whitney Museum of American Art is already known for its great dining options, and a new exhibit conflates art and dining within a gallery. From Jan. 15 to Feb. 17, an untitled work by American artist Darren Bader will be used as pedestals to display produce, which will be turned into salads for visitors to enjoy and then replaced with new produce. Food for thought, indeed.

$25 tickets, $18 student tickets, salads served Mondays, Wednesdays and Sundays, 3 p.m.–6 p.m.; Fridays, 7:30 p.m.–10 p.m.; 99 Gansevoort St., whitney.org

Museum of Ice Cream (MOIC)

This pop-up isn’t melting away anytime soon. In fact, the museum dedicated to all things frozen and sweet became a permanent 25,000-square-foot, three-floor attraction in December. The New York City flagship features 13 new installations, including the biggest sprinkle pool yet, an epic three-story slide, a grandiose hall of giant scoops and many more multisensory exhibits. This immersive ice cream experience is sure to defrost your winter blues, all created by MOIC’s unique team of ice cream-loving architects and designers.

$38 tickets, bring student ID, 558 Broadway, museumoficecream.com

Museum of Ice Cream photo by Nicole Franzen
Museum of Ice Cream photo by Nicole Franzen

12th Annual Cassoulet Cook Off

You may already be aware of how involved it is to make this classic French dish (hint: it takes multiple days) — and you can be the judge of a few local chefs’ variations. On Saturday, Jan. 25, amateur and professional chefs representing New York eateries will compete to see who makes the best version of cassoulet, determined by celebrity judges and a people’s choice award. Local beer, cider and spirits will be served at the age-21-and-up event.

$55 tickets, 110 Kent Ave., Williamsburg, Brooklyn, eventbrite.com

ICE Recreational and Continuing Education Classes

Don't miss our newest hands-on classes: The Art of Dosa, Bagel Brunch, Dinner in Italy, Les Petit Fours with Chef Kathryn Gordon, Modern Country Cooking with ICE alum Annemarie Ahearn, The Sculpted Cake with Sugar Couture cake artist and ICE chef-instructor Penny Stankiewicz, Techniques of Lamination and Vegan Umami with Health-Supportive Culinary Arts Chef-Instructor Olivia Roszkowski. Plus, four new professional development programs have debuted: Culinary Nutrition and Food Therapy with Director of Nutrition Celine Beitchman, Beverage Program Management with Director of Beverage Studies Eamon Rockey, and Fundamentals & Service of Wine with sommelier, author and educator Anthony Giglio.

See hundreds of upcoming classes at ICE.

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