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Chianti in Greve™

A Food & Wine Lover’s Dream

Cooking Tours
Prices & Dates

Chianti in Greve!  Tuscany’s most beautiful place.  Rolling fields of olive trees flickering silver-green, vineyards blanketing landscapes in emerald leaves and tall cypress trees guiding your way.  It’s a food lover’s dream ~ hearty pici pasta drowned in a creamy garlic tomato sauce called aglione, accompanied by a glass of Chianti Reserve.

Tie on your apron for our hands-on cooking in dreamy Tuscany with Chef Laura and sommelier, Signor Gianpaolo our winemaker.  During your stay, immerse yourself in cooking and wine tasting while discovering Tuscany’s history with the family.

When you are not cooking, you will explore Tuscany’s most picturesque hill towns, including Greve in Chianti, San Gimignano and Siena, with a stop to visit Italy’s most famous butcher, Dario Cecchini, who was recently featured in Lauren’s Taste of Italia Magazine, as well as in many TV shows.  You will visit his butcher shop, watch him chop and grill-up la bistecca alla Fiorentina, the prized loin cut of Tuscan beef.  While you are touring and cooking and enjoying your stay, there will be lots of sipping and swirling on the most precious wines of Chianti and even a visit to the famous Antinori Vineyards.

This Tuscan Food and Wine Lover’s Dream offers the perfect blend of cooking, touring and discovering Tuscany’s historic towns, cultural landmarks and world class vineyards ~ all while soaking up the local culture.

Cooking Classes

Chef Laura leads your hands-on cooking classes in her professional Tuscan kitchen. Slice, dice and sauté, while following her techniques, which were honed over the years cooking in her nonna’s kitchen.  You will prepare a full lunch or dinner starting with an antipasto, fresh pasta with sauce and also dessert.  Following each cooking class, guests enjoy the foods that were prepared in class while around Laura’s gorgeous Tuscan table with plenty of wine included.

Chef Laura uses only fresh, organic products that are grown in her garden.  Signor Gianpaolo is passionate about his elaborate herb and vegetable garden – growing basil, thyme, sage, saffron, lettuce, potatoes, cabbage, tomatoes and Tuscan sunflowers too.  You’ll also learn a few gardening tips from Gianpaolo, who is often referred to as the Green Thumbed Tuscan!

During your cooking class, discover the history of Tuscan cuisine, which is rustic in origin and uses basic ingredients such as bread, spelt, legumes, artisan cheese like percorino and goat’s milk cheese, and the season’s bounty, such as mushrooms, chickpeas, cannelloni beans and pumpkin.

Cooking class menus change with the season.  For appetizers, discover the Tuscan antipasti: crostini, toasted bread, topped with chicken liver, black olive and vegetable cream.  There’s panzanella, tomato and bread salad, homemade salame spiced with fennel, and ribollita, a traditional Tuscan bean soup.

Up next is pasta, local hand-made fresh pappardelle with hare, pici, Tuscan pasta, and tortelli. Secondi, or main courses, include: bistecca fiorentina, grilled T-bone steak, arista alla fiorentina, filetto al balsamico, and vegaterian options too. It is not over until you have dunked your bread into Signor Gianpaolo’s Tuscan olive oil.  Dolce follows!

An Italian pranzo or cena is not complete without dolce!  Learn how to make castagnaccio, chestnut cake, buccellato, anise cake, torta mantovana, fritelle di riso, and cantucci.  After each class, everyone enjoys the food that was prepared in class, accompanied with a glass of Gianpaolo’s red or white wine and vin santo ~ made on the property with passion.

While Laura is cooking, Signor Gianpaolo is cultivating the grapes from spring to autumn, with the harvest in September.  In the cantina, discover and taste his signature and reserve wines, including Chianti, Sangiovese and Brunello, while nibbling on salumi, artisan formaggio, figs, apricots, along with cantucci and vin santo, sweet dessert wine.  All of his wines have all been naturally produced and bottled on the property.  Raise your glass for a Tuscan toast!

Tuscany

Beautiful Tuscany!  Tuscany is often referred to as a nation within a nation due to its strong linguistic and cultural identity.  The region is known for its numerous historical cities that date back centuries, as well as its vineyards – particularly Antinori vineyards – museums and ancient Etruscan archeological sites.  Tuscany also has a vast, beautiful landscape that stretches from the peaks of the Apennine Mountains to the Tyrrhenian Sea.  Natural beauty surrounds you from the islands of the Tuscan Archipelago to the Apuan Alps and down into the heart of Florence.

Greve in Chianti

Greve in Chianti’s quaint little square is named Piazza Mattetotti.  In fact, it is not a square at all, but is triangular in shape, and a mere 10-minute walk from your property.  Spilling with caffès, ceramic makers, artisan cheesemakers and Antica Macelleria Falorni, a landmark butcher who carries an emporio of cooking ingredients, the piazza offers something for everyone.  Visit the ancient common baker’s oven, where in the old days everyone baked their bread and biscotti – dropping dough off in the morning and picking it up in the afternoon.

If artisan crafts are of interest, visit the Bottega dell’Artigianato, a shop which specializes in hand-woven baskets and products made of olive wood.  There’s a home goods shop flooded with linens ~ from napkins to table cloths.  Stop in the gelateria, taste-test a few delicious flavors before ordering up your own cone of fig, pistachio or even saffron ice cream.  The piazza is a vibrant, historical place where you can watch local Tuscan life pass by from any one of the cozy caffès.

Greve in Chianti is also the principal town of the Chianti wine district and host to the Chianti Classico Wine Festival.  Visit the Palazzo del Comune, city hall, built in neo-Renaissance style, and the statue of Giovanni da Verrazzano, the famous explorer who discovered the Hudson Bay in New York and keeps watch over the square.  There’s also the Franciscan Monastery and the Chiesa di Santa Croce, dating back to the 11th century.

Saturdays mark the famous farmer’s outdoor market, which has been in existence for hundreds of years.  Here you will encounter lively venders selling their Tuscan goods ~ food, wine, cheese and even linen tableware.

Siena

South of Greve is Siena, a gorgeous Tuscan town and also named a World Heritage Site.  Siena is rich in monuments, palaces and churches – dating back to the Etruscan era.  At the heart of this town is the Piazza del Campo, regarded as one of Europe’s finest medieval town squares.  Other attractions include the Duomo of Siena and the Torre del Mangia, but the Palio—Siena’s famous horse race—often takes center stage.

During your Siena food lover’s tour, you will discover hidden shopping spots with tastings included and landmarks steeped in history with our English-speaking guide.

Your private driver transports you to and from these beautiful towns while you can sit back, relax and enjoy all the sights, sounds, scents and tastes that the region has to offer.

Chianti in Greve Accommodations

A private road framed by a garden of lavender and tall sunflowers leads you to the property.  You’ll know when you arrive as a wrought-iron gate magically opens and welcomes you in.  Benvenuti, welcome to your home-away-from home, a Tuscan Relais set in a gentle countryside.  Peaceful and green, your surroundings are fields and olive orchards and vineyards overlooking the town of Greve in Chianti.

Originally constructed as a farmhouse in the 1500s, the property has been carefully restored to preserve the original architectural features, while also returning the farmland back to its full productivity.

Each private suite has a kitchenette completely furnished with dinnerware and cutlery, a sitting area and everything you will need to make you feel at home.  Precious Tuscan bedspreads in autumn orange and cobalt blue adorn each room with comfy beds and matching pillows.  Terracotta and colorful tiles adorn the kitchen, making you feel like a vero Fiorentina!  The Relais accommodates all of your needs with modern fixtures and amenities, such as air conditioning, free Wi-Fi, a minibar, satellite TV, a hairdryer and safe.

On site, Signor Gianpaolo has a small restaurant for your dining needs, complete with wines galore.  And when weather permits, June to September, the oversized swimming pool is open for all, along with a Finnish sauna.  Amongst all of this grandeur, there is the garden.  Oversized lavender growing four feet tall, wind-swept sunflowers, saffron and green grass everywhere in an oasis of peace and quiet.

During your stay, you can always slip from the garden and segue along the scenic pathway to Greve, just a 10-minute walk away.  Follow the ancient path that was once used by the Etruscans.

Itinerary

Day 1: Arrival and Chef’s Welcome Dinner.

  • Arrival and transfer to property from Florence Airport or Train Station, followed by check-in.
  • Enjoy a welcome Prosecco aperitivo.
  • In the evening, a Chef’s Welcome dinner is served by Chef Laura, featuring her Tuscan cuisine, along with wine pairings of four different wines from the cantina.

Day 2: Cooking Class 1 & Wine Tasting

  • Breakfast is served.
  • After breakfast, tie on your apron and get ready to cook. You’ll be slicing, dicing, and preparing a delicious, authentic four-course Tuscan menu.  Chef Laura will guide you step-by-step in creating:  ribollita, pappardelle with hare, filetto al balsamico, and castagnaccio.  Lunch follows with the foods prepared in class along with a toast of the property’s red or white wine.
  • Take the afternoon to relax at the property, indulge in a spa treatment or stroll into town for an afternoon
  • In the evening, enjoy a wine tasting at the property featuring the beautiful wine of Gianpaolo with light Tuscan fare.

Day 3: Beautiful Siena & San Gimignano

  • Breakfast is served.
  • An early morning departure takes you to the gorgeous city of Siena and then on to San Gimignano. At the Medieval gates of Siena, meet our English-speaking guide, Nicoletta, for a Food Lover’s and Landmark Tour.  During the tour, learn about the city with food tastings along the way.
  • Visit the Piazza del Campo, home to the Palio, dating back to Medieval times. Walk in the footsteps of jockeys who ride bareback and circle the Piazza three times before a winner arrives.  While in the Piazza del Campo, stroll by the Palio palazzo where windows display the horsemen’s majestic costumes and well-kept artifacts.
  • Explore Siena and visit the famous Duomo di Siena, Basilica Caterinina. There is also a historic Jewish quarter where you can opt to visit the synagogue.  Wrap up your visit with shopping to the many artisan leather and papermakers, cheese shops, ancient bakeries and wine cantinas.  After your tour, your food tastings will have you satisfied, but before we leave Siena you’ll have time to grab a quick extra bite if you need.
  • Next, your driver takes you to the Medieval hill town of San Gimignano, known as the Town of Fine Towers. Walk through ancient cobblestone streets and visit the Piazza della Cisterna, Torre Grossa, and Collegiate Church of San Gimignano.  After your giro, slip into any one of the lovely outdoor caffès, sip a wine or Proscecco and soak up the local harpist playing music on any sunny day.
  • Return to the property. Dinner is on your own with our Restaurant Hot Pick suggestions provided.

Day 4: Cooking Class 2 and Vineyard Cantina Visit with Tasting

  • Breakfast is served.
  • After breakfast, return to the kitchen for your cooking class. Learn how to prepare delicious traditional Tuscan cuisine, including panzanella, pici, arista alla fiorentina, and buccellato.  Lunch follows with the foods prepared in class along with a toast of the property’s red or white wine.
  • Following lunch, your driver takes you along Chianti’s famous wine roads. You will travel along rolling hills and emerald green vineyards to our favorite winemaker.  This organic winemaker has combined old-world techniques with modern technology for an extraordinary product.  The property is set in the heart of Chianti Classico, called the Conca d’Oro, the golden shell, due to its shape.  The high altitude and particular soil, along with the warm Tuscan sunlight and micro-climate, make for excellent growing conditions.
  • The wines are produced from grapes exclusively from the property vineyards, picked by hand, selected with care and vinified in a special way. The property also produces extra virgin olive oil.
  • Next visit the cantina, where you will see barrels of red and white wine fermenting. After the tour, enjoy a full tasting with an assortment of wines accompanied by light Tuscan bites.  From the high hills of Chianti overlook acres of vineyards and olive groves while you sip and swirl.
  • Return to the property. Dinner is on your own with our Restaurant Hot Pick suggestions provided.

Day 5: Super Tuscans ~ Antinori Tour, Wine Tasting & The Art of Wine Making

  • Breakfast is served.
  • Following breakfast, you’re off to the world-famous Cantina Antinori nel Chianti Classico. Learn about the art of winemaking with a family who has been making wine for over six centuries, since 1385 when Giovanni di Piero Antinori became a member, of the “Arte Fiorentina dei Vinattieri,” the Florentine Winemakers’ Guild.  Throughout 26 generations, the Antinori family has managed the business directly, making innovative and sometimes bold decisions while upholding the utmost respect for traditions and the environment. Today, Albiera Antinori is the president of Marchesi Antinori with the continuous close support of her two sisters, Allegra and Alessia; all aspects of the business are managed by the family. Signore Marchese Piero Antinori, their father, is the current Honorary President of the company. Tradition, passion, and intuition are the three driving forces that led Marchesi Antinori to establish itself as one of the most important winemakers of elite Italian wine.
  • Your tour through the Antinori cantina includes a tour with our English-speaking guide and tastings. Following your tour, take time to shop in the wine boutique, then enjoy lunch in their beautiful restaurant on the property.  (Lunch is not included.)
  • Return to the property. Dinner is on your own with our Restaurant Hot Pick suggestions provided.

Day 6: Visit to Singing Butcher, Dario Cecchini

  • Breakfast is served.
  • Following breakfast, your private driver travels to Panzano. Through the rolling green hills of Tuscany halfway between Florence and Siena, Panzano is home to Signor Dario Cecchini, the singing butcher.  He’s the eighth generation of Cecchini butchers, who for the last 40 years has carried on the tradition of raising prized Chianina cattle.
  • The sign outside reads: orario al pubblico, lunedì a domenica 9 alle 16—open to the public Monday to Sunday, 9am to 4pm. Closed only on Christmas. Located on via XX Luglio, across the street there’s a statue of a blue cow painted with large yellow sunflowers, blue margheritas and violet honeysuckle. A welcoming door is left open and, upon entering, the song Volare by Domenico Modugno plays on.  Along the back wall is a long banquet table draped with a red and white tablecloth. The table is set with large oval platters holding toasted Tuscan bread, whipped lard, black olives with fresh orange zest and slices of salumi. Several Chianti wine bottles in straw jackets are left for guests to pour freely, while a young Italian named Elena circles the room passing out more wine. Everyone is sipping Chianti wine and it’s only 10 a.m.
  • After the warm welcome and a few sips and bites, enjoy lunch, included, with il menù del macellaio, the butcher’s menu, including: six meat courses, seasonal vegetables, beans with extra virgin olive oil, Tuscan bread, wine, olive oil cake and grappa.  The prix-fixe menu might include: tartare or Chianti crudo, rosbiffe reale (roast beef), arrosto di petto, costata alla Fiorentina, bistecca Panzanese, bistecca Fiorentina, pinzimonio di verdure (raw vegetables and olive oil for dipping), fagioli all’extravergine in e.v.o. (Tuscan beans), patate al cartoccio (baked potatoes), burro del Chianti (his recipe for whipped butter with herbs), pane Toscano, and vino di Vittorio, acqua liscia o con le bolle (spring or fizzy water), caffè alla moka, torta all’olio (olive oil cake), grappa Cecchini and cordiale dell’Esercito Italiano.
  • At the Officina and at Solociccia, everything is served family-style, and each guest is invited to enjoy as much or as little as they wish from the prix-fixe menu.  It’s a jolly atmosphere and tables are convivial so you may make new friends.
  • Return to property. Dinner is on your own, but after Dario’s lunch you probably will dine tomorrow!

Day 7: Departure

  • Breakfast is served.
  • Check-out and departure transfer to property from Florence Airport or Train Station.
  • Arrivederci Greve!

Program Includes:

  • 7 days, 6 nights in a double room, based on double occupancy. Click To View!
  • Daily breakfast.
  • Welcome aperitivo & dinner.
  • 2 hands-on cooking classes followed by lunch or dinner with wine included.
  • Wine tasting session at the property with Sinor Gianpaolo.
  • Full-day excursion to Siena & San Gimignano.
  • Food Lover’s Tour of Siena with English-speaking guide, tastings included.
  • Half-day excursion to Tuscan winery, tour of winery & tastings included.
  • Half-day excursion to the award-winning Antinori winery, tour and tastings included.
  • Half-day excursion to Dario Cecchini’s famous butcher shop and restaurant. Lunch with wine included.
  • Arrival and Departure Transfers to and from Florence train station or airport.
Program Prices

$3,695 per person, based on double occupancy. All taxes and VAT included.

Please call us for single pricing and we will do our best to fit you in with a group to ensure you receive the best possible single rate.

Check Availability

2019 Dates: This program is available throughout the entire year. You can check in and start your cooking program any day of the week. Rates are subject to change based on currency exchange. Call for updated rates. Airfare not included. Group transfers for any cooking tour or tours that include transfers, are for the group and are not private. Transfers before, after or to another destination outside of your cooking tour are not included in the program price. If you would like to add on a private transfer or transfers, let us know and we will send you pricing.