Italian Mamma Liguria! Cooking In Her Private Home Kitchen™

Cooking Classes & Market Visit Genova With Chef Chetta ~ 8 Day


Step into Genova, Liguria’s capital, set between the Ligurian Sea and the Apennine Mountains for our Genovese hands-on cooking with Chef Chetta in her private home kitchen!  This total immersion cooking tour includes three cooking classes in Chef Chetta’s professional home kitchen including: Shop With the Chef, Market Tour, Tasting & Farm To Table Cooking Class, The Riviera Cooking Class  and Pesto and Pasta Cooking Class. Small group classes guided by Chef Chetta with a true hands-on cooking approach will have you totally immersed learning not only how to cook but also learning the history behind each recipe too.

While in Genova, you will experience the city’s rich history, culture and culinary traditions, while learning to prepare local his local recipes. When you are not in the kitchen cooking, stroll the centro storico, old part of Genova, and experience its mix of medieval landmarks, 16th-Century & Baroque art and its rich food culture.

This cooking program featuring Liguria’s best-loved local products will have you discovering ingredients like you have never seen before.  Learn how to make focaccia,  pesto and delicious desserts too!  You will also learn about seasonal products at the market when you shop with the chef.  Cooking classes are hands-on and held in the Chef’s professional home kitchen.  Following each cooking class, enjoys the foods that you prepared in the kitchen. When you are not cooking, you will have extraordinary visits to food places and landmarks. You will visit Portofino, one of Italy’s favorite ports with its charming harbor, and cafés spilling on the piazza. Take a front row seat at any one of the cafes and enjoy a gelato or glass of wine and watch the world go by. Stroll to the famous Lighthouse or take your time and shop for artisan products, hand-carved wooden utensils and Ligurian olive oil.  Each day you will learn, soak up the local culture and cook delicious traditional cuisine.

Liguria Cooking Classes

Your cooking classes are lead by Chef Chetta in her home kitchen. You will quickly learn the simplicity in fresh and seasonal products as  she shares the recipes of the Riviera.  Learn how to make handmade pasta pansoti and ravioli with pesto or walnut sauce; gnocchi prepared in a butter and sage sauce.  From antipasto, to fresh pasta and seasonal sauces to fish, you will learn a well-rounded menu.

Fish is abundant in Liguria and the typical local fish include marinata di Morone with herbs, Santa Margherita pink shrimp and spigola, sea bass. Meat and vegetarian menus available upon request.  You will sample the area’s excellent olive oil made from Taggiasche olives, and learn about the wild herbs and vegetables of Ligurian cuisine. She shares her family recipes with each guest while preparing full course lunch and dinner.


A visit to Genova is a journey through the food, wine and history of this Ligurian city on the sea. Genova’s Porto Antico is home to Europe’s largest Aquarium with over 800 species from unique Mediterranean fish, dolphins, sharks, turtles and more. There is also the Il Grande Bigo, a monument that was built to commemorate the 500th anniversary of Christopher Columbus’ voyage and includes an elevator brings you sky-high for an incredible view over the entire city and sea.

You will visit Via Garibaldi, known as Strada Nuova (literally “New Street”), where majestic Rolli Palazzos house the most important city museums. The very heart of the historical center is Piazza San Lorenzo with its beautiful Cathedral – the perfect starting point for exploring the city. Then you’ll find Palazzo Ducale, which offers numerous new and interesting exhibitions, and Piazza De Ferrari and the Carlo Felice Theater.

Then there is shopping. Genova, Liguria’s chic city, is a have for shopping of all kinds, including artisan olive oils, pasta and wine. The city also has attractions to satisfy a range of interests, from the Porto Antico area for those traveling with kids, or kids-at-heart, to the Via Garibaldi and its museums for the art-lover. In the delightful old part of town you can wander through the maze of narrow streets filled with arts and craft shops always accompanied by the melodies of local singer-songwriter Fabrizio De Andrè.

Genova Accommodations

Your charming boutique hotel is strategically set in the center of Genova. The historic palazzo is located just opposite the San Lorenzo cathedral, in the heart of the city center, and close to the main museums of Genova. Built in the 16th century and later restored by the noble De Marie family, the palazzo has recently been updated blending modern additions, while keeping its old word charm. The hotel’s cafe overlooks the sixteenth-century Piazza San Lorenzo, which overlooks Genoa’s Cathedral. The elegant rooms are clean, bright and include all the modern comforts with first floor rooms overlooking the picturesque piazza below.  Characterised by high, arched ceilings with rich stucco décor, rooms range in size from 30 to 40 square meters. In addition to all the amenities (private ensuite bathroom, minibar, air conditioning, telephone), guests will also find fax, personal computer, free WiFi internet connection and satellite TV.

Itinerary: 6 Days, 5 Nights

Day One: Arrival & Welcome Dinner

Arrival at Genova airport or Train Station.Transfer to hotel and check in.

Check into your property in the heart of Genova
Refresh, relax, enjoy an aperitif or explore the town and get acquainted with this gorgeous city on the sea.

Chef’s Welcome Dinner including a full course menu of antipasto, main course and dessert with wine included.

Day Two: Shop With the Chef, Market Tour – Tasting & Farm To Table Cooking Class

Breakfast is served.  After breakfast, join our chef for a tour of the market in the heart of Genoa.  Discover the marketplace and learn to shop like a chef selecting in-season local produce and products at the oldest market, called the Mercato Orientale, the oriental market.  This market is brimming with farm-to-table fruits, vegetables, fish, meats, artisan cheese, spices and wine.  Local purveyors showcase their best picks, cuts, catches and selections of the day.  While you shop, learn about cooking styles, herbs and spices of this beautiful part of Italy – including pesto!This tour starts with a caffe in a local spot and ends with a glass of wine, before heading to the kitchen for your Farm to Table hands-on cooking experience.  Following the cooking class, everyone enjoys the foods together with a toast of wine.

Afternoon is free.  Explore any one of Genova’s landmarks, exhibits or events.  We will provide updated options.

Dinner is free and on your own with excellent suggestions provided by Cooking Vacations.

Day Three:  Genova Guided Tour – Landmarks, Piazzas, Shops with Food & Wine Tasting 

Breakfast is served.

Meet your English-speaking guide at the hotel for a guided tour blending landmarks, piazzas and shops.  You will discover the Genova and all of the specialities this city has to offer.  During the tour, you will taste focaccia, artisan cheese and olive oil.  Tastings included.

Your tour continues with a Ligurian wine tasting where you will sip and swirl wines such as Vermentino, Pigato to delicious reds, Rosses and Cinque Terre.

Lunch is on your own.  Take the afternoon to discover Genova.

Suggestion:  In the afternoon, Italian lesson 1 with Signora Francesca.  Francesca is our English-speaking guide and official Italian teacher.  The class will include a combination of conversation and grammar.

Dinner is free and on your own, we provide excellent suggestions. 

Day Four:  Gulf of Tigullio and Portofino with Boat Excursion 

Breakfast is served.

Morning meeting with your English-speaking guide at the hotel, and then, you will take the scenic train to the Gulf of Tigullio and following, Portofino.  You will discover Tigullio, part of the Riviera di Levante.

Sail along a beautiful promenade to Portofino & the Tigullio Gulf.  On the east side the Tigullio Gulf are the most famous of Liguria’s town; Portofino and Santa Margherita.  Next is the small fishing village of Portofino.  Portofino is a crescent-shaped pastel village set on the Italian Riviera boasting typical trattorias and cafes to luxury yachts that bob in the harbour.  The town has always been a beloved spot for artists and writers that have long sung its praises.

The Piazzetta sits centre stage while its sea front restaurants spill with caffe tables filled with sun-splashed happy Italians.

Following your tour, return to property via a private car transfer.

Dinner is free and on your own with excellent suggestions provided by Cooking Vacations.

Day Five:  The Riviera Cooking Class

Breakfast is served.

The Riviera Cooking Class.  Learn the secrets of this great region’s cuisine in a hands-on class dedicated to the Rivera, while learning the food history of Genova’s cuisine.  A truly unique cooking class with sample menus such as:

Farinata (Genoa chickpea tart), local cheese and charcuterie board or butter and salted anchovies bruschetta; focaccia genovese. In any case a tasting of the extra virgin olive oil we produce in our family olive groove.

Pasta Course: Traditional fresh hand-made pasta (tagliatelle or mandilli de sea, or corzetti) or potato gnocchi with pesto in the  mortar or pansotti (veggies filled pasta) with walnut sauce or a traditional soup.

Main Course: a Liguiran savory pie and a cheese pie (focaccia al formaggio di Recco), meat rolls (tomaxelle), italian meat balls (polpette), pork roasted (arrosto di maiale)

Italian Riviera braised chicken (pollo alla ligure), filled anchovies (acciughe ripiene), stewed cuttlefish (seppie in zimino), greenbean and potato meatloaf (polpettone), stewed stockfish (stoccafisso accomodato); sides such as: traditional tomato salad (condigiun) or seasonal vegetable stewed;

Desserts include: canestrelli, biscotti, baked peaches, sciumette, Italian Riviera floating islands,pandolce, Genova cake, quaresimali, almond cookies, stroscia di pietrabruna, extra virgin olive oil cake or stroscia di pietrabruna, chestnut pie. (castagnaccio) .

Afternoon free. We suggest a visit to one of the green areas such as the Urban Park of Nervi. This has long been a favorite spot with local noble families looking to build elaborate villas facing the sea.  Stroll in the shade of swaying palms and walk along magnolias or along a seaside promenade facing the cape of Portofino.  You can opt to visit any one of the museums, the aquarium or special event and exhibits.

Suggestion:  In the early evening, Italian lesson 2 with Signora Francesca.  Francesca is our English-speaking guide and official Italian teacher.  The class will include a combination of conversation and grammar.

Dinner is free and on your own with excellent suggestions provided by Cooking Vacations.


Day  Six:  Sestri Levante and Chiavari & Pesto and Pasta Cooking Class

Breakfast is served.

After breakfast, your guide meets you at the hotel for a excursion to the Peninsula of Sestri Levante & Chiavari with our English-speaking guide.

Together you will take the scenic train with our guide to the magnificent peninsula of Sestri Levante and Chiavari discovering the seaside towns and their food and history, while soaking up the culture of this very special part of Italy.

Lunch on your own.   Follow lunch, return to Genova in a private transfer.

Pesto Cooking Class.  Learn to make pesto like a true Genovese with basil, olive oil, pine nuts and a mortar along with troffi, traditional pasta of the region.  In our hands-on class learn to mix, roll and twist pasta dough into delicious pasta topped with fresh made pesto.  Dessert and local wine is included.

 Day Seven:  Captain Angelo’s Boat Tour & Lunch

Breakfast is served.

Early morning train to Monterosso al Mare for a fun-day full excursion the precious sea side town to meet Captain Angelo.  Sail off for a full day excursion with our local Captain.  Lunch is included.

Return to Genova on your own via train.

Dinner is on your own.

Day Eight:  Breakfast & Departure

Breakfast is served.

Check out and private transfer to Genova Train Station or Airport  Arrivederci!

Program Includes:

  • 7  nights and 8 days in a boutique hotel accommodation based on double occupancy. Click To View Photos!
  • Daily breakfast and maid service included
  • Welcome dinner at our favorite local restaurant, local wine included.
  • 3 hands-on cooking classes,  Shop With the Chef, Market Tour – Tasting & Farm To Table Cooking Class, The Riviera Cooking Class  and Pesto and Pasta Cooking Class
    followed by lunch or dinner with the foods prepared in class, local wine included.
  • Guided tour of Genova’s historic center.
  • Wine tasting of local white wines.
  • Guided visit of Sestri Levanti & Chiavari. Transport by train included.
  • Guided visit of Genova’s Mercato Orientale.
  • Trip to the Gulf of Tigullio and Portofino. Transport by bus & train included.
  • Monterosso al Mare Boat Tour (transportation to and from via train. Train tickets are not included)
  • Arrival & departure transfers from Genova Airport or Train Station.
Program Prices

$2,495 per person, based on double occupancy.

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

[2017] Dates: This program is available throughout the year. 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.