Culinary Journey to Tuscany Italy
October 12-18, 2019 | $6000.00 US pp** | SOLD OUT!
You've heard the hype: Tuscany, Italy is as beautiful as a postcard, the food is incredible, the landscape is breathtaking, the streets are vibrant and full of charm and history, and the wine is, arguably, some of the best on Earth. And it's TRUE!
Imagine spending the morning overlooking vine-covered hills of Tuscany as the sun peaks through the mist, cooking with the best of the best locally produced ingredients, enjoying meals al fresco with exquisite wines that we've discovered along the way. We'll explore the Tuscan culinary scene, visiting artisan cheese makers, olive mills and vineyards that produce some of the best wines in the world.
Just when we're ready to relax and take it all in, the full-service spa at our gorgeous, meticulously renovated 16th-century villa awaits! And the best part of this extraordinary week is that I will be hosting this trip alongside my dear friend, Valentina Lizzo, proprietor of this lovely villa. You will be in excellent hands!
** Price based on double occupancy, single supplement charge applies for solo travelers. Limited availability for sIngle occupancy rooms. Airfare not included. Deposit of $2000.00 per person required to secure a spot. See tour Terms and Conditions here.
Tuscan culinary cooking classes
The tour will include several hands-on cooking classes that focus on the best of Tuscan cuisine. We'll cook in the villa's gorgeous well-equipped professional kitchen using the freshest ingredients from outdoor markets and butcher shops in the village. Since we'll be there in time for the Fall harvest, we'll be sure to create some dishes with the bounty of local fresh produce and of course, use plenty of the region's delicious olive oil and cheeses!
We'll make pasta by hand and create a delicious braised beef ragu served in two separate courses. And we'll make some of my favorite recipes such as Red Onion Ravioli with Thyme Cream, Risotto with Chianti, Tiramisu and a decadent Caramelized Chocolate Almond Budino. We might even cook some wild boar! Oh, and since we have a big wood-fire oven, maybe we'll invite a local pizzaiolo (master pizza-maker) to come over and make pizza with us!
Tuscan Villa Accommodations
We'll stay at the luxurious and beautiful Villa Vallentina, in the heart of the Chianti region just outside of Lucca- my favorite Tuscan city, famous for its incredible wine and the best olive oil in the world! This gorgeous property includes a grand villa, a pool and tennis court, unlimited Tuscan scenery, all situated among acres of olive groves, cypress trees, vegetable gardens, and rolling hills.
Each spacious room is unique, and the view from every window is like looking at a painting! Amenities abound, from full spa services to Wi-Fi. Room upgrades are available on a first-come, first-serve basis. Please inquire upon registration.
Don't just take my word for it, watch this Villa Valentina virtual tour!
Tuscan Day Trips
In addition to our cooking classes at the villa, we'll explore the region together in comfortable touring vans. There are so many options for our excursions! Maybe we'll take a lovely drive through the countryside to visit my friends at their vineyard, where we'll taste and learn about Chianti and the Sangiovese grape, Super Tuscans, and Brunello wine - some of the world's most exceptional wines. We'll be sure to shop for local produce and to gather seasonal ingredients for our evening meal. On the way back to the villa from the market, we might even stop at the beautiful hilltop town of Montecatini Alto and enjoy lunch on the picturesque square!
Tuscany is also famous for its olive oils and Pecorino cheese, so perhaps we should visit an olive mill and cheese producer to see why! Then, maybe we will head off to the quaint village of Pistoia for a visit to one of the largest the large open-air markets.
Get ready for an unforgettable week!
Tuscany Trip Details
This journey begins on the evening of October 12 with a welcome reception and dinner at the villa and concludes with breakfast and departure on October 18. Group transfers are available for pick-up at Pisa Airport or Lucca at approximately 4:30 pm. For Lucca, guests will meet the driver at the Porta Santa Maria information center at the corner of Via San Paolino.
A non-refundable deposit of $2000.00 US per person is required to register for the journey. See the Terms and Conditions above for details. The single supplement charge applies for solo travelers. Accommodations, cooking classes, excursions and day trips, transfers, transportation during the tour, wine and meals with the exclusion of one are included. Airfare (varies) is not included. Final payments are to be made by personal check or money order. We highly recommend purchasing travel insurance.