Go back to school at The Broadmoor’s Barbecue University

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Do you like to mix cooking with luxury travel? Barbecue University might be just the ticket for upgrading your barbecue skills. Steve Collins of Santa Fe Traveler attended and is here to tell us why we should go, too.

The prime rib is ready for the rotisserie, photo Steve Collins

Looking for a great getaway? Boomer barbecue fans can combine cooking and luxury at Barbecue University. BBQ U, held at the Five-Star, Five-Diamond, The Broadmoor in Colorado Springs, Colorado each June, is a winner.

The three-day session offered by BBQ guru and baby boomer, Steven Raichlen is sure to please. And, The Broadmoor is the only place you can take this popular hands-on class.

A Day at Barbecue University

I was invited to take the class for a day last June during our stay at the resort. Class members got together for a continental breakfast to start the day. The room was buzzing with anticipation.

Raichlen, an animated presenter passionate about sharing his love for food, gave us an overview of each dish we’d be cooking that day, including a history of its origins and a cultural context. As each dish was introduced, Raichlen asked for volunteers from the group to prep and cook it.

By the end of the session, we were all part of a team. BBQ enthusiasts of all ages and experience levels learned outdoor cooking techniques and recipes in class.

Then we headed out to the amazing array of grills and smokers to cook the dishes we’d prepped. The lineup of grills and smokers, operating on various fuels including charcoal, propane and hardwood, used at BBQ U is a toy store for outdoor cooking aficionados.

After class, the group and their guests (there is an additional charge) dined on a huge lunch buffet featuring all the dishes the class prepared that day.

The Broadmoor Hotel photo by Steve Collins

The Broadmoor

The Broadmoor, set on 3,000 acres, with 744 rooms and suites, nine restaurants and an assortment of high-end shops is a self-contained village. If you are a boomer couple and only one is interested in attending classes, your companion can spend the morning taking advantage of the many things this huge resort offers. 

Start the day with a relaxing room service breakfast or try the sumptuous breakfast buffet served daily at the elegant Lake Terrace dining room. After breakfast, you can lounge by the huge pool, pamper yourself at the world-class spa, play some tennis or a round of golf on one of their three championship courses.

Spend afternoons touring the area. There are lots of nearby attractions.  Or, take advantage of the large variety of activities on the grounds. Whether you’re active or laid back, or a combination, you’ll find plenty to keep you busy.

Steve Raichlen with Billie Frank and Steve Collins

Who is Steven Raichlen?

Raichlen, author of the best selling  The Barbecue! Bible (over 900,000 copies have been sold) and almost two-dozen other books, is the star of PBS TV’s show Primal Grill. He’s traveled the world researching his topic and he clearly loves it. You will too. His enthusiasm is contagious.

This overachieving baby boomer has led an interesting and diverse life.  He graduated Phi Beta Kappa from Reed College, a liberal arts school in Oregon, majoring in French literature.

After graduating, he studied medieval cooking in Europe with a Thomas J. Watson Foundation Fellowship. He also trained at the Cordon Bleu and La Varenne cooking schools, both in Paris.

Raichlen found BBQ through his intellectual curiosity; it was a perfect fit. He traveled to over 50 countries exploring their traditions of cooking over fire. He brings this international fare to his classes, introducing dishes from around the world.

Besides writing cookbooks, appearing on TV and having his own line of BBQ supplies and foods, this Renaissance man has taken to writing fiction. His first novel,  Island Apart, is set on Martha’s Vineyard, where he spends part of each year. He is working on a second.

Barbecue University is offered for two, three-day sessions at The Broadmoor each June. Sign up early, it’s a popular program.

We were guests of The Broadmoor where one of us took part in BBQ U for a day and the other went the pampering route. Their generosity did not influence this post in any way.

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