About Us

Whether you’re a kitchen novice or you already know some of the tricks of the trade, you’ll have a great time at Food at 52.

We offer hands-on tuition in an atmospheric and professional cookery school in the heart of Clerkenwell, central London.

Our classes are a fun chance to catch up with old friends and meet new ones whilst learning to cook impressive dishes with delicious recipes you can cook again and again at home. Each session ends with a mouth-watering feast of all the food we’ve prepared accompanied by some specially chosen wines.

A group of people gathered around our oak table during a Food at 52 cooking class.

Why We Are Unique

Food at 52 operates from a quirky country home style kitchen in the heart of Clerkenwell on Central Street. Despite being ten minutes from Old Street, Barbican and Angel stations, once you step inside you’ll feel like you're in the middle of the Berkshire, Kent or Surrey countryside.

Great care has been taken to create a homely and relaxed environment - people immediately feel at ease and are ready to enjoy the class. As soon as you enter our eclectic and funky lounge area you can sink into a couch or even play the piano.

Downstairs in the kitchen, the action takes place around a vast custom built oak and stone table. The cooking area is extremely well equipped with all the gadgets and utensils you may dream of having at home.

Curious about our artistic stained glass window, confusing name (Food at 52, but at 96 Central Street) or suit of armour? Just ask!

The Food at 52 kitchen with a view of its oak banquet table and gas stoves.

What’s In It For You?

Once you’re donning your denim apron, the cooking starts. Continue to mingle with other guests over a bottle (or more)of wine whilst you learn cooking skills and develop your culinary technique. Share our passions and take home your recipes to delight your friends with.

Hone your basic skills with our Kitchen Basics and Confidence classes, master fish and a stress free dinner party or learn an artillery of quick and simple mid- week seasonal suppers on our evening, afternoon or full day classes.

Be inspired by the authentic Thai, Vietnamese, Spanish, Italian, Moroccan or Southern Indian global cuisines we’ve brought back from our extensive world travels.

Ultimately though it's about having fun, enjoying yourself and picking up some great skills and memories on the way!

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Where It All Started : The Chef

My name is John Benbow and I have been cooking ever since I remember. For me, the essential ingredient for a good meal is the passion and conviction the food has been made with, be it a dinner party for 10 or a quick supper for the family.

After many years of running a film set building company I left behind the dust of the workshops for the fragrant steam of the kitchen. Friends had been asking for a culinary crash course so in 2007 I launched Food at 52 to pass on my knowledge and enthusiasm to others.

Photo of John Benbow, Chef and founder of Food at 52.

How It Continued : The Family

My wife Emily joins me in our family-run business, along with Roxy our dog who makes an occasional visit, and our small amazing team in our office and kitchen. We're all massive foodies who have been truly bitten by the travel bug! Working at Food at 52 combines our love of fabulous food, authentic travel and inspiring conversations.


Being on Central Street in Clerkenwell means we’re located as the street name indicates: in the heart of central London. As a result, we are very easy to access by public transport; surrounded by bus routes, ten minutes from Old Street, Barbican and Angel Underground stations and near King's Cross, Farringdon and Liverpool Street rail stations. There is short and longer term car parking near by and bicycle rails close too. See below for a map for more detail.