The Academy of Cooking & Other Pleasures began operating in Paraty in late 2003, and functions in all the areas described in this web site; dinner demonstrations, 5 Day Culinary Tour, weddings, conferences, and professional culinary training.


Our mission is to produce products and services that combine the joys of Paraty, Brazil and cooking, and to ensure that the result is fun for all those involved.


Our people combine the different skill sets, knowledge and experience
to accomplish our mission.

Chef Yara Castro Robert began her culinary education with her mother who owned an important catering business and a cooking school in Brazil. She is a graduate of the Boston University Culinary Program, took classes at the Cambridge School of Culinary Arts, l’École Ritz-
Escoffier in Paris and food History at Radcliff College.
For ten years Yara gives Brazilian cooking classes in several Universities, schools and culinary organizations in the USA and Canada, such as Boston University, Rhode Island School of Design, AIWF, International Association of Culinary Professional, Old Ways Preservation & Exchange Trust, La Chaine des Rotisseurs, Draeger’s Culinary Center of San Francisco.

She is the creative director of the Academy of Cooking & Other Pleasures in Paraty, Brazil, where she presents dinner demonstrations of Brazilian dishes from the Amazon, Bahia and Minas Gerais, making connections with History and culture. Yara is fluent in Portuguese, English, French and Spanish.

The acclaim she has earned has been reflected in the press:
Yara and her recipes have been features in The New York Times, the Boston Globe, the Washington Post, TV Globo, Bons Fluidos, Viagem, Blue Travel, L’Art de Voyager and Cassa Vogue. About her says The New York Times:
“…she is a vivacious and seemingly inexhaustible ambassador for food and other things Brazilian. And she is an accomplished cook.”


She was the host for a PBS-WGBH cooking show series that was nominated twice for an “Emmy” award honoring Yara’s style and the content of the program.