Parma's Food Lover Kitchen™

Parma Cooking Classes & Culinary Tour All Inclusive ~ 8 Day

Meet our Michelin Star Chef in a culinary adventure in Parma.  This glorious 8 day food adventure heads to the culinary heart of Parma for an authentic hands-on cooking class and food tour like no other.  Tie on your aprons for a cooking experience in a Michelin Star kitchen with Emilia Romagna’s high quality products such as prosciutto di Parma, Parmesan cheese, aged balsamic vinegar from nearby Modena.  Learn the art of making tortellini and tortelloni and delicate sheets hand-rolled pasta in our small classes with personal attention to each cooking guest.

Imagine an immaculately restored antique court rescued from the waters of the Po, gradually rebuilt, brick by brick, room by room and returned lovingly to its original glory. An ancient dwelling that was once home to Maestro Giuseppe Verdi, now an impressive structure of ancient red brick sitting grandly on the banks of the Po, a luxurious, welcoming retreat for discerning guests. Our exclusive Prestigious Parma program brings you to the lush rolling countryside of Parma, the very heart of Reggio Emilia, where renowned Chef Massimo will welcome you into his kitchen and introduce you to local traditional flavors, using organic produce that comes directly from his vegetable garden and the estate’s working farm. Chef Massimo’s cuisine is elegant, fresh and colorful, and is based on exalting the natural goodness of truly fresh produce.

Our week-long program offers a guided tour of Parma with its theater, duomo and its baptistry, as well as a boat trip along the Po, and a fascinating visit to an artisan Parmesan cheese maker. Enjoy a cycle along the riverbanks where you can stop off for a picnic, relax and enjoy the thermal waters of the Terme di Salsomaggiore, and learn more about the Parma of Maestro Verdi. The perfect program to bring you closer to Italy’s celebrated gastronomic heart.

Parma Cooking Classes

Cooking classes take place in the property’s beautiful Michelin star kitchen with Chef Massimo and his team, and make full use of the excellent organic produce that comes from the kitchen garden. But that’s not all. On the estate, there are also cows, geese, pigeons, ducks, rabbits and chickens, all of which make their way into the kitchen, as well of course, as the area’s famous pigs which are transformed into artisan produce such as culatelli, salami, preti, coppe, spalle, and many other types of salumi. And don’t forget that this is the land of handmade pasta, and Chef Spigaroli and his team will soon have you rolling out paper thin sheets of pasta to create anolini, tortelli, ravioli, tagliolini, tagliatelle, stringoni and pasta rasa. Learn how to conserve the fruits of all the different seasons, making jams and marmalades, crystallizing fruits, making tomato conserve and preserving vegetables. And (depending on the season), pick up tips on how to create delicious traditional liqueurs and herb teas like Nocino allo Sbùrlon (walnut liqueur), Bargnolino al Luigino (prune liqueur), and Canarino a digestive drink based on hot water and lemon zest, all wonderful traditional remedies and tipples to recreate at home.


The property is situated a short distance from Parma and is one of an assortment of antique buildings and hamlets that make up the small typical village. The city of Parma which dates back to Etruscan times, is an attractive, wealthy and well-organized town which over the years has been a Roman colony, and a home to Goths, Lombards and Franks. As well as being a city that produced two great Maestros – Verdi and Toscanini – Parma also offers a beautiful Romanesque Duomo which contains some astounding frescoes by Lattanzio Gambara and a pink marble baptistry by Antelami, both of which are well worth a visit. Restaurants and trattorias where you can sample the area’s excellent hams, salumis and cheeses abound, and an afternoon wandering around the gardens of the Parco Ducale is a pleasant way to spend a few hours.

Parma Accommodations

This unique property makes the perfect destination for anyone wishing to experience the very particular countryside and atmosphere of Parma’s lowlands, where the scenery is dominated by expanses of flat fields and woodlands and of course, the windings of the River Po. The property offers six rooms, and two suites, each warm and elegant, furnished tastefully in a style that blends modern accents with period details and furnishings, and featuring magnificent sixteenth century ceilings. All rooms offer splendid views over the nearby fields and rivers, have functioning fireplaces, a minibar and a basket of fresh fruit, and private bathrooms where you’ll find beautiful linens, marble baths and handmade artisan soaps scented with olive oils and wines.

On the estate there is a working farm where most of the fare that reaches the table is grown, raised and produced, including the many excellent pork products the area is famed for, which are aged in the cellar which dates back to 1320. The property’s exclusive restaurant boasts open views over the surrounding countryside and the River Po, and guests are able to soak up the atmospheric panorama while cozying up close to an open fire.  Set in the heart of the Emilia Romagna countryside and nestled in the triangle of Parma, Cremona and Piacenza on the Po River, our cooking experience with Chef Massimo will have you preparing local foods like a rising star chef.

Itinerary: 8 Days, 7 Nights

Day 1: Arrival, tour of property, welcome dinner

• 11 am: Arrival.
• Check in and welcome.
• Lunch on the property featuring the estate’s organic produce, artisan bread, cheese and salumi.
• Tour of the property, including the working farm and cellar.
Welcome dinner featuring the Chef’s tasting menu.

Day 2: Boat trip to Cremona

• Breakfast is served
• Boat trip on the Po as far as the pretty town of Cremona, home of the Stradivari violin, with picnic lunch
• Dinner at the property

Day 3: Cooking class 1

• Breakfast is served
• 9.30 am – Cooking Class 1. Aprons on and into the kitchen with Chef Massimo and his team where you learn how to transform fresh organic produce from the estate’s vegetable garden into delicious local dishes. Lunch follows at the Chef’s table and includes the foods prepared in class. Local wine included.
• Afternoon and evening free to relax, or perhaps explore your surroundings.
• Dinner free: recommendations available for neighboring restaurants.

Day 4: Cooking Class 2 & Verdi tour

• Breakfast is served
• 9.30 am – Cooking Class 2. Back into the kitchen with Chef Massimo and his team where today’s lesson covers the creation of handmade pasta and risotto. Learn the secret of turning out delicious anolini, tortelli, ravioli, tagliolini, tagliatelle, stringoni or pasta rasa, and how to dress pasta and risotto dishes using fresh, seasonal ingredients. Lunch follows at the Chef’s table and includes the foods prepared in class. Local wine included.
• Afternoon: follow in Maestro Giuseppe Verdi’s footsteps with a guided tour that takes you to places and monuments marking important moments in Verdi’s musical career.
• Evening: dinner at Il Cavallino Bianco restaurant

Day 5: Visit to Parmesan Cheese producer & cycle trip

• Breakfast is served
• 8.30 am – visit to a local cheese artisan to find out more about the production of the renowned Parmesan cheese.
• Pick up bicycles for a trip along the banks of the Po. Or visit the castle of Rocca di Soragna just outside Parma. Enjoy a picnic lunch.
• Evening: Wine tasting at the property, accompanied by dishes specially prepared by our Chef.

Day 6: Cooking Class 3 & Terme di Salsomaggiore

• Breakfast is served
• 9.30 am – Cooking Class 3. Roll up your sleeves and prepare for your third class with Chef Massimo and his team. No one has a better knowledge of local cuisine than your chef, and today you will create a full territorial menu featuring specialties from Parma made from fresh, organic produce. Lunch follows at the Chef’s table and includes the foods prepared in class. Local wine included.
• Afternoon visit to the Terme di Salsomaggiore for an afternoon of thermal pampering and relaxation.
• Free for dinner: recommendations for local restaurants available on request.

Day 7: Guided visit of Parma & Gala Dinner

• Breakfast is served
• Morning: enjoy a guided tour of Parma where you will visit the Duomo, Baptistry, theater and other important monuments.
• Free for lunch: pick out a pretty, little trattoria and sample some delicious Parma specialties
• Evening: Gala dinner at the property with tasting menu created by Chef Spigaroli.

Day 8: Cooking Class 4 & Arrivederci

• Breakfast is served
• 9.30 – Cooking Class 4. Back into the kitchen with Chef Massimo and his team to learn how to conserve seasonal produce. Each month brings its own wonderful bounty and nothing could be more Italian than learning how to conserve the garden’s fruits and vegetables to enjoy throughout the year. Jams and marmalades, crystallized fruits, tomato conserve and preserved vegetables all have a place in our Chef’s larder. Lunch follows at the Chef’s table and includes a selection of foods prepared in class. Local wine included.
• After lunch, guests receive their end of course diploma.
• Checkout & Arrivederci!


Program Includes:

8 days, 7 nights accommodations, based on 2 guests in a room.

Daily breakfast and maid service included.

4 hands-on Michelin cooking classes, followed by lunch including the foods that were prepared in class with wine included.

5 Chef’s tastings dinners at the property with wine excluded (Day 5 includes a wine tasting).

2 picnic lunches in the countryside with home made foods from the Chef’s kitchen.

Guided visit of property, including a working garden farm and beautiful 14th-century wine cellar.

Guided visit of the famous Parmesan cheese maker with discussions and tastings included.

A guided tour of the city where Verdi lived and played his music.

Guided visit of Parma, a food lover’s dream tour.

Spa services at Salsomaggiore.

Boat trip to Cremona.

Bicycle rental for one day.

Cooking Vacations welcome bag, chefs’ aprons and recipe booklet.

Program Prices

$3,995 per person, based on 2 guests in a classic room.

$4,495 per person, based on 2 guests in a 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

2023 Dates: This program is available throughout the year. You can check in and start your cooking program any day of the week, as this program is offered 12 months per 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.