SHERIDAN — Verdello, a downtown store selling international oil and vinegar varieties in Sheridan, recently expanded its services to include a fully-functional kitchen. Construction continues at the space, and owners Mark and Kathy Bede, with help from their daughter and store manager Lindsey Vredenburg, anticipate transforming the business into an event space.
“We want to teach people how to use our oils and vinegars, and the best way to do that is through cooking classes,” Kathy Bede said.
Kathy Bede formerly owned and operated the Cottonwood Kitchen Shop on Main Street. Cottonwood will soon relocate to the old JCPenney building and partner with Verdello in providing cooking classes for the community.
The vision of serving the community through a business started with Bede at Cottonwood and transferred to current owner Jessica Garrelts and to the new venture at Verdello.
Bede, who established relationships with chefs at Cottonwood, pulls talent from around Sheridan and even out of Montana to host the cooking classes.
The Brinton Bistro executive chef Jesse Woelber went to school with Vredenburg and has worked with Bede since her time at Cottonwood.
“Kathy has been such a good part of the community with both of her businesses as far as people in the restaurant business is concerned,” Woelber said.
Woelber will host her first cooking class at Verdello April 6 on how to make a perfect lamb dinner. Her favorite aspect of having Verdello as a Sheridan source is the elaborate, yet strong flavor profiles of the oils and vinegars.
“I’m always looking for really unique ways to have really straightforward flavors, just real true to the ingredient,” Woelber said. “I think that’s what they’re doing down there.”
Woelber said people are often either intimidated by places like Verdello because they do not know how to properly use the ingredients, or flavors easily become muddled out of overuse. Her experience with the ingredients have been positive and actually increased her productivity in culinary creations at The Brinton Bistro.
“When they asked me to help educate the community, I was super excited,” Woelber said. “There’s so much that can be done with the product they offer.”
Woelber discovered that by using the oils and vinegars provided at the shop, she could eliminate several other ingredients in a recipe.
“The fact that they have that concept in mind — and she always has even at the Cottonwood Shop — that concept to not just sell kitchen equipment but to offer all kinds of outlets for what she’s about down there is really cool,” she said.
While Bede offers an array of international products throughout the store, the olive oils come Olivelle out of Bozeman, Montana.
Bede and Vredenburg agreed that Friday classes felt more like date night events and the Wednesday night classes serve as more laid-back, mid-work-week classes. The extended area being constructed south of the existing kitchen will also make room for private parties, meetings and events.
With big plans on the horizon, Verdello’s owners will continue expanding their goals of bringing a world of flavors to Wyoming through the kitchen.