Shakespeare’s Fair Verona™

Cooking In A Castle With Chef Michele ~ 6 Day

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Check into a fairytale 15th-century castle and be a king and queen for your stay,  Delicious food prepared by Chef Michele paired with fine wine from the Veneto region is featured in this luxurious cooking tour.  During your stay, enjoy the lush green gardens flowering with fragrant sage, lavender and rosemary and a peacefulness that sets the mood.  Chef Michele’s masterful cooking lessons, guided with care, will have you preparing exquisite food of the land featuring farm-to-table produce and products.  Join us in the countryside of Verona where Shakespeare called it, “Fair Verona.”

Verona Cooking Classes

Under master Chef Michele’s expert guidance, you’ll learn hands-on how to create a complete menu – antipasti, fresh pasta or risotto, main course and dessert. Michele’s style marries traditional recipes of Veneto with modern touches, using local and traditional products including sweet Montagnana ham, renowned Fassona Piemontese beef, and tastasale (a salami paste).

During your three in-depth hands-on cooking classes, you’ll prepare intriguing courses such as Michele’s take on Risotto alla Veneta, a risotto including pork and a cinnamon sauce, and Baccalà alla Vicentina, a dish of traditional salt cod with polenta. Learn about the tradition and perfection for fresh fish with a simple-yet-sublime preparation of sea bass in foil. If you like, sip a glass of fragrant Valpolicella or refreshing Bardolino as you prepare the antipasto, using farm-to-table ingredients in season such as asparagus, sweet peas and beans, and locally-cured meats like salumi and prosciutto. Taste artisanal cheeses including robust Grana Padano, full-flavored and Brie-like Bastardo del Grappa, nutty and piquant Monte Veronese, and Il Brillo di Treviso, which derives its pleasing sweetness from being aged in red wine. Desserts add to the pleasure and may include a fabulously romantic rose cake, Italian jam tart or panna cotta with mint and chocolate.  Everyone enjoys the foods that were prepared in the cooking class following  – in the castle or in the garden dining areas.

Exploring Verona & The Region

After a day to enjoy the castle, you spend the second day of your tour in the world-famous viniculture districts of Soave Classico and Valpolicella. Visit a local winery that has been run by the same family for more than a century.  Meet your driver who will take you to this award-winning winery where you will visit an eno-museum and learn how the family was instrumental in improving the quality of the Corvina, Cornivone and Rondinella grapes that make up the fresh, fruity Soaves and fragrant Valpolicella wine.  You’ll tour and taste the wines dining room dining room from light and refreshing to intense and powerful, and there is even bubbly sparkling along with a sweet dessert one.

Even in Italy, where prosciutto is part of every Italians’ tradition, the sweet ham of Montagnana is ranks top too. The third day brings you to a Medieval town encircled by ancient walls and imposing battle towers.  Visit inside and discover a local ham renowned for its sweet taste, exquisite softness and scent, and its delightful pink color.  This ham was also a favorite of the Doges of Venice dating back to 1400 and is still celebrated yearly with the Festa del Prosciutto Veneto DOP, the festival of prosciutto, in May.  Explore the beautiful town and its gourmet shops, restaurants and charming piazza.

On the fourth day it’s off to fair Verona. Experience the romantic Piazza Bra, with caffès and restaurants and shops – stroll the square, soak in the ornate Veronese architecture or visit the pink stone Verona Arena.  Visit the bustling market at Piazza delle Erbe and view the 14th-century Madonna Verona fountain.  Visit the Casa di Giulietta, Romeo and Gulietta’s castle, and take a photo on the ornate stone balcony.  See a panoramic landscape of Verona from San Pietro Castle and visit the Church of San Zeno Maggiore, a stunning 9th-century basilica.

You will also visit the Comunes of Monselice and Arqua Petrarca. Monselice, the most famous for Castello Cini, which houses one of the most important collections of European Medieval weapons and armour.  There is Arqua Petrarca, a well-preserved Medieval town built on a hillside noted for olive oil, honey and locla wine. It’s also where Petrarch, poet and humanitarian lived the final years of his life – it is called, the Casa de Petrarca.  The Casa de Petraca is a museum dedicated to his remarkable life and work, with beautiful frescoes, arches and balconies overlooking the Euganean Hills.

Verona Accommodations

Check into the gorgeous 14th-century castle. Feel like royalty in your your spacious Junior suite overlooking the gardens, then wake in a dreamy canopy bed.  Luxurious furnishings and modern comforts including gorgeous linens and beautiful bedding, along with a private ensuite bath with magnificent hand-painted clawfoot tub make your stay comfortable and relaxing.  Daily breakfast is included with espresso, cappuccino or tea, and fresh baked cornetti, farm-fresh eggs, cakes and breads along with fresh fruits, jams and biscotti.

The castle was built in 1336 by Signor Guglielmo.  At the time, it was surrounded by a wide moat and three rings of fortified walls joined by a drawbridge and had both defensive and state functions.  Set between Padua and Verona, 5 km from Montagnana, the castle and property are set on 25,000 square metres of land in the countryside of Verona.  Lush flower gardens are at your every turn, a beautiful outdoor dining area and endless green fields.  Agriculturally rich farmlands and valleys provide local chefs and artisan bakers with pure and fresh fruits of the land making it an ideal location for excellent cuisine and wine.

Itinerary ~ 6 Days, 5 Nights

Day 1: Arrival

  • Arrival & Check in.
  • Late afternoon – tie on your apron for your first cooking class with Chef Michele preparing a full course dinner.
  • Dinner follows and includes the foods that were prepared in the class with a toast of local wine.

Day 2: Cooking Class 1

  • Breakfast is served.
  • Following breakfast, meet your driver for a visit to famous wine producer of  Verona with tour and wine tastings included.
  • Return to the property to relax or venture into Verona for an afternoon visit.
  • Dinner on your own.

Day 3: Cooking Class 2

  • Breakfast is served.
  • After breakfast, meet your driver for an excursion to Montagnana, with English-speaking guide.  The tour includes a visit with tasting of typical cured ham.
  • Return to the property.  Lunch on your own.
  • Late afternoon – tie on your apron for your cooking class with Chef Michele preparing a full course dinner.
  • Dinner follows and includes the foods that were prepared in the class with a toast of local wine.

Day 4: Excursion to Verona

  • Breakfast is served.
  • After breakfast, meet your driver for a guided visit to Verona.  This tour is 5 hours.
  • Take time out to enjoy lunch in Verona on your own.
  • Dinner on your own.

Day 5: Wine Tasting

  • Breakfast is served.
  • After breakfast, meet your driver for a tour to Arqua Petrarca and Monselice, with English-speaking guide.
  • Late afternoon – tie on your apron for your cooking class with Chef Michele preparing a full course dinner.
  • Dinner follows and includes the foods that were prepared in the class with a toast of local wine.

6: Departure

  • Breakfast is served.
  • Following breakfast, check-out and arrivederci! A presto!

Program Includes:

  • Six days and five nights, based on two guests in Junior Suite with private ensuite bath. Click to View!
  • Daily breakfast and maid service.
  • 3 hands-on cooking classes preparing antipasto, pasta with a sauce, main course and dessert.  Everyone dines on the foods that were prepared in the cooking class. Local wine and water included.
  • Visit to wine maker with tastings and private driver included.
  • Excursion to Montagnana with driver, English-speaking guide.  Tour and tasting of the delicacy ham produced here included.
  • Visit to Verona, English-speaking guide and private driver included.
  • Excursion to Arqua Petrarca & Monselice, with driver and English-speaking guide.
Program Prices:

$2,295 per person, based on 2 guests in Junior Suite.

For Single Guests: If you are traveling on your own, please call us for the best group price. We are happy to welcome you into an already scheduled group.

Check Availability

2022 Dates: This program is available throughout the year. Check in and start your program on 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.