Food and Wine Experiences

Northern Italy

Cooking Class in Venice with Chef Giuseppe
Enjoy a hands-on cooking class in the heart of Venice! Meet Chef Giuseppe at his restaurant, Osteria Ai Assassini, for a walking tour in the outdoor market of Rialto. The Osteria is a typical Venetian “bacaro”, an informal place where locals and tourist meet to have lunch and dine and also savour Italian wines as well as imported beer. Ai Assassini distinguishes itself by changing menu daily in order to explore the different gastronomic specialities of the city and combine them with the appropriate wines and side dishes. At the market, experience vibrant Venetian life as you visit stalls full of fruits, vegetables, and of course fresh fish. The class will take place at Osteria Al Assassini; you’ll learn how to make seasonal and traditional Venetian dishes from an entertaining and passionate Chef Giuseppe Galardi, who is also called Giusy because his mom wanted a girl!You will prepare such dishes as capesante alla Giusy, risotto with prawns and zucchini, and cuttlefish with polenta. You’ll also learn how to prepare the famous local aperitiv “spritz” to toast with the chef. Lunch to follow based on your efforts with local wine, as well as Venetian biscuits with holy wine.
Cooking Class in Venice with Catarina and Giovanna
The “Acqua Stanca” is born under a womanly light. Two founders: one is an architect, who decided to change her life and became a chef, moved by her passion for cooking. The other one has worked for years as catering Manager at the famous Harry’s Bar. Caterina Nason and Giovanna Arcangeli decided to combine their professionalis, sensitivity and love for slow food concepts: therefore they decide to repair an ancient bakery in Murano and transformed it in a wine bar and restaurant, “Acqua Stanca”. The restaurant, exclusively hosting 24 people, is located in front of Ponte de Mezo in Murano. “Acqua Stanca”, “Tired water”, is the point where water does not move either down or up and gives us a sense of peace, tranquillity and out-of-time atmosphere, the same we want to recreate here”-Giovanna says “By working at Harry’s Bar I have learnt the values of simplicity and hospitality, that I want to transmit to our clients” The owners serve a few dishes, belonging to traditional Venetian cuisine, based on excellent wines and regional products. At wine bar, you can taste the famous “cicchetti”, (appetizers to be accompanied by local wines for a typical aperitif), or the most traditional and “poor” dishes: tongue, kidney, boiled meat.

Central Italy

Cooking Class with Chef Claudio in Tuscany
Just outside Florence, nestled in the countryside near the charming town of Figline Valdarno, is the popular Relais Torre Guelfa, owned by English speaking Chef Claudio Piantini. Chef Claudio is widely considered one of the rising stars in Tuscany and his hands-on cooking lessons are second-to-none, offering you the opportunity to learn, prepare and experience an unbelievable number of dishes. The classes are held in Chef Claudio’s special teaching kitchen at his charming countryside property, the Relais Torre Guelfa. Prior to the class Claudio will proudly show you his fabulous fruit and vegetable garden, perhaps picking some items to use in the class. After the lesson, your meal is served either in the dining room, or, if weather permits, on the outdoor terrace or around the swimming pool, set amidst Claudio’s own vineyards. All classes last around three hours and are followed by an abundant meal (lunch or dinner) with wine.
Cooking Class with Chef Jacopo in Florence
Jacopo Tendi is a Florentine Professional Chef with immeasurable passion and knowledge of Tuscan cuisine. Spend an afternoon at his house in Piazza Beccaria; under his guidance you will learn some culinary skills and maybe even some of his cooking secrets! The daily teaching experience supports Jacopo’s belief that good cooking can be an easy and joyful experience that everybody can do. His hands-on classes transmit, in a casual and unpretentious atmosphere, the down-to-earth character of Italian cooking and the strong, vibrant and naturally genuine flavors of Tuscan food.
Your culinary experience will begin at 10:00 a.m. and last through lunchtime when the morning food preparations will be savored for lunch, including wine. All locally purchased products are guaranteed to be the freshest possible; a guided tour of the local food market, Sant’Ambrogio, may be included in the course upon request. If you choose this option, then your day will start at 9:00 a.m. Jacopo’s kitchen is large, well lighted and fully equipped. The courses are limited to a maximum of eight students per course, which assures complete involvement of each student.
Cooking Class with Chef Laura in Chianti
What mysterious force drives some of us to relinquish all we know for the promise of a dream? Here is one account. In the early 90’s a Florentine family led by Laura, Giorgio and their two sons left behind the bustle of their famous city for the lure of a simple life beneath the Tuscan sun.
Laura will teach you the secrets of typical Tuscan dishes, and you will learn with her how to make chicken liver crisp breads, the ribollita, pasta and beans, stuffed boar, chicken cacciatore and many other dishes. The courses are held in the morning from 9:30 a.m. or in the afternoon from 4 p.m. and last around three and a half hours, for a minimum of 2 people and a maximum of 10, except where particular requests are made. The course will finish with a lunch or dinner during which you will have the chance to taste and comment on the cooked dishes.
Fabiolos Cooking Class in Rome
There is an archaic saying, most likely as ancient as Rome, ‘When in Rome , do as the Romans do’. Thus is the basis of which we have orchestrated our new cooking lesson. Our ‘Walking Tour’ intertwines the discovery of the magical Italian cuisine juxtaposed with the sightseeing beauty that in this world only Rome has to offer. You will see Rome through the eyes of a local and find fresh ingredients in local neighborhoods of Rome . The magical cobblestone streets will take you by sites including: Trevi Fountain, Piazza di Pietra, the Pantheon, Piazza Navona, the Jewish ghetto and the fantastic Campo de Fiori.Fabio Bongianni invites you into his personal home located at the top of the monumental stairway of 138 steps, known as The Spanish Steps. His home, previously owned by a princess, offers a warm environment with breathtaking views. You will tantalize your tastebuds with the fresh ingredients you picked out and prepared with Fabio. Fabulous Fabio has a passion for cooking that you too, will walk away with! The price includes the cooking course and lunch or dinner. Minimum of 1 people and a maximum of 8 people.
Dinner in a Private Home in Florence
Despite the large variety of good Florence restaurants, none of them is able to provide a 100% authentic touch of Florence lifestyle. If you wish to experience the real Florence and get to know the culture in deep, nothing is better than sharing a homemade rich dinner with a Florentine family in its own domestic enviroment : you will learn more about every day life in Florence, as well as habits and feelings of its inhabitants in a relaxed and friendly atmosphere. Families hosting dinners have been scrupulously selected. Dinner are available every day of the week, all year round ON REQUEST. Most of the houses selected are located in the countryside.

Southern Italy

Cooking Class with Chef Ciro in Praiano, Amalfi Coast
Enjoy a cooking class at the hotel Tramonto d’Oro (Golden Sunset) in Praiano, a beautiful town in the heart of the Amalfi coast. The hotel has been owned by the Esposito family for years and has spacious terraces that boast spectacular views of Positano, the Isle of Capri, and the sunsets for which the hotel is named. You will be welcomed for your Amalfi Coast cooking experience as one of the family. Your hands-on cooking class will be held in the hotel’s restaurant kitchen and taught by a trio of tremendously passionate chefs, each with his own specialty. Carmine, Ciro, and Salvatore will guide you through first, second, and dessert courses, divulging the secrets of Mediterranean regional cuisine. The local specialties the chefs will share with you require remarkably few ingredients, and consequently be easy to reproduce in your own kitchen. Following the class, there will be a tasting prior to your evening meal.
Cooking Class with Chef Saverio at Relais Blu in the Amalfi Coast
The four star luxury Relais Blu Belvedere is situated in a spectacular location amidst a luxurious Mediterranean garden, century old olive trees, maritime pines, agave plants, astonishing rock garden, and fully surrounded by the crystal clear blue sea. Everywhere you look you will find unbelievably beautiful scenery, including views of the islands of Capri and Ischia.
Your guide through your experience in Campania cooking will be the head chef of the Ristorante Relais Blu, Saverio Gargiulo. Chef Gargiulo grew up and learned about cuisine in Sorrento, where he studied under the popular Italian chef Gianfranco Vissani. Today, the Chef’s cuisine is based on seasonal cycles and on organic raw materials that are reinterpreted in an original and modern way while still respecting Italian and regional traditions. You will also have the opportunity to visit the restaurant’s exceptional wine cellar, managed by Nicoletta Gargiulo, winner of the 2008 Best Italian Sommelier Award.