fbpx

Cooking in the Italian Alps™

Cooking Classes in Livigno, Tirano & the Italian Alps ~8 Days

bergamo-1-day-cooking-class_hands-on bergamo-1-day-cooking-class_lesson bergamo cooking class - spaghetti bergamo cooking class - dolce

Tie on your aprons in the heart of the Italian Alps for a hands-on cooking experience and trekking adventure in the valley of Valtellina. Close to Switzerland in the northern Lombardy region, Valtellina is where Alpine tradition meets Italian lifestyle. Discover luscious green valleys, crystal blue lakes, and treasured vineyards in all the four seasons. Whether walking through medieval villages, biking on mountain cycle paths alongside the Adda River or skiing the snow-covered slopes of the Italian Alps, Valtellina has something for everyone – especially its food and wine.

Tirano and Livigno – this one-of-a-kind cooking tour will take you to two of Valtellina’s most heralded towns.

Tirano

Discover Tirano, a treasured town set in the heart of Valtellina. The town is filled with ancient palaces and churches that are enclosed in the city walls of Ludovico il Moro. It is rich in history with the majestic and imposing Basilica of the Madonna di Tirano striking a perfect balance of Renaissance and religious architectural expression. Next to the sanctuary is the Tiranese Ethnographic Museum. The thousands of historic artifacts within are a document of Valtellina’s peasant life and culture, including a stua, a wooden room, used for dining and recreation inside rural houses. While the town is home to several noble Valtellinese palaces, Tirano is also the terminal station for the Bernina Railway. Designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2008, the railway links Tirano to the spa resort town of St. Moritz in Switzerland and offers breathtaking panoramic views of the Italian Alps along the way.

Livigno

Livigno, the other destination in your two-part cooking program, is just 15 km from St. Moritz. The town is set in the isolated mountain village’s snowy peaks making it an alluring haven for many winter sports – and summer sports like hiking, mountain biking, horse riding, and boating. Much of Livigno’s beauty is in its rustic charm, exemplified in the picturesque log cabins called baita that can date back 600 years. And while the white powder slopes attract visitors from all over Italy and nearby Switzerland and Austria, so too does the village’s duty-free status, with clothing, alcohol, gasoline, technology, and other goods sold at discounted prices.

Valtellina Cooking Class

Join us and immerses yourself not only in Valtellina’s beautiful sights, but the cuisine as well. Join Chef Andrea for 2 hands-on cooking classes where you will prepare healthy ingredients that are transformed into full course menus. Chef Andrea has worked in some of Valtellina’s most prestigious hotels and loves to share his culinary expertise with you in the kitchen. The hands-on cooking classes provide an immersive look at preparing traditional Valtellinese recipes using farm-to-table fresh ingredients that are inseparable from the local cuisine—buckwheat, bresaola, Valtellina’s signature cured and air-dried beef, potatoes along with Casera and Bitto cheese.

Learn how to prepare antipasto such as sciatt, crisp round buckwheat fritters enveloped in Casera cheese, or chisciöl, buckwheat pancake served with a chicory salad. Mix, roll, and knead the iconic regional pizzoccheri della Valtellina, a buckwheat pasta served with potatoes, cabbage and melted Casera cheese. Main courses wow with local polenta con cervo, buckwheat porridge topped with tender venison, and manfrigole, buckwheat crepes filled with Casera cheese and bresaola. Discover how to make taròz, a purée of potatoes, runner beans, Casera cheese, onions and garlic! Desserts are delicate, delicious and include bisciola, a round rustic sweet bread made with raisins and walnuts, or coppetta, a soft nougat filled with honey, walnuts, and crushed cookies between two thin wafers.

You will also sip and swirl some of Valtellina’s famous red wines during a pair of wine tastings. First, you visit the wine cellar of your Tirano accommodation, which was used to produce Valetellina’s prized Sforzato di Valtellina DOCG wines. The preserved barrels and tools that transformed the Nebbiolo grapes into wine date back as far back as the 18th century. You will also meet the last descendant of the Merizzi family, who will share memories and stories about the production of Sforzato wine during his childhood. Next, travel to the La Gatta Estate, where the Triacca family have made Valtellina Superiore DOCG wines for over 50 years, for a tasting and lunch. In addition to wine, there will also be a tour of the Braulio cellars in the town of Bormio. One of the most famous Italian liqueurs, Braulio’s mix of local herbs, fruits, and berries gives it an unmistakable aroma.

Italian Alps Accommodations

Your charming accommodation in Tirano is nestled in the historic town’s center and dates back to the 1500s. The property was recently renovated into a modern hotel focused on eco-sustainability. The ancient stone structure keeps spaces cool during the summer, the organic vegetable garden supplies the kitchen with fresh produce, and the property’s bike room has all the necessary tools to keep your bikes or e-bikes in tip top shape. Rooms are warm, inviting, and soundproof with comfortable beds, Italian bedding and sheets, free Wi-Fi, a flat screen TV, a desk, minibar, private ensuite bathroom, hairdryer, phone, safe, and eco-courtesy set. A daily breakfast with local ingredients with expresso, cappuccino and tea included.

Check in to your comforting Livigno accommodation in the heart of town where dining, shopping, and restaurants brim at your feet. The terrace overlooks the town’s main road and shopping area with fashionable boutiques lining the street. The hotel includes a fine dining restaurant within a cosy and intimate atmosphere dotted with ancient stua, as well as a newly refurbished spa with Turkish bath, sauna, whirlpool, and ice waterfall. The elegant and refined rooms are stylishly decorated in a mountain style with original items and offer stunning views of the valley. Each room has a king size bed, Italian linens, desk with chair, safe, free Wi-Fi, smart TV, kettle, private ensuite bathroom, hairdryer, and courtesy set. A continental breakfast is served daily.

Itinerary

Day 1: Benvenuto and Check-In!

• Arrive in Tirano and enjoy an aperitif at the Cantina Contadi Gasparotti and your Cooking Vacations’ welcome bag.
Later in the evening, enjoy your Welcome Dinner including a Chef’s Tasting Menu featuring local cuisine with an antipasto, fresh pasta and sauce, main course and dessert. Wine is not included.

Day 2: Tirano Historic Center and Sforzato Wine

• Breakfast is served.
• Following breakfast, visit the town’s historic center, including a guided tour of Palazzo Salis and the Basilica of Madonna di Tirano.
• Take time for lunch on your own, not included.
• In the afternoon, visit the Tirano wine cellar with centuries-old, preserved barrels of Sforzato wine. Tour and tasting included.
• Dinner is on your own with suggestions provided.

Day 3: La Gatta and Cooking Class 1

• Breakfast is served.
• Following breakfast, meet your English-speaking guide and visit the La Gatta estate home to an ancient Dominican monastery dating back to the 1600s with a guided tour of the vineyard and wine cellar. Following the tour, enjoy a traditional Valtellina wine tasting with regional food included.
• Take time for lunch on your own, not included.
• In the afternoon, tie on your apron and get ready for your first hands-on cooking class. Featured in this cooking class is the preparation of pizzoccheri, Valtellina’s signature handmade pasta and sauce. Learning this pasta takes time and our chef shows you how. Lunch follows and includes the food prepared in the cooking class with a toast of wine included.
• Return to the hotel and dinner is on your own with suggestions provided.

Day 4: Bormio & Livigno

• Breakfast is served.
• Meet your driver and visit Livigno with a stop in Bormio to visit the cellars of the Braulio liqueur. Tour and tasting included.
• Take time for lunch on your own in a traditional trattoria, not included. Following lunch, you will arrive in Livigno. Check into the hotel.
• Enjoy an aperitivo followed by a Chef’s Tasting Menu featuring local cuisine with an antipasto, fresh pasta and sauce, main course and dessert. Wine is not included.

Day 5: Livigno Dairy & Farm Tours

• Breakfast is served.
• Following breakfast, meet your driver and English-speaking guide for a tour of the Latteria di Livigno, the town’s Dairy store, to admire the workshops and vintage farm equipment.
• Take time out for lunch on your own with suggestions provided.
• Later in the afternoon, experience a trekking excursion around the property with lunch on a Livigno farm. Lunch is included at the Livigno farm. Wine and drinks not included.
• Return to the hotel and enjoy dinner at the hotel included. Wine note included.

Day 6: Cooking Class 2 & Scenic View of Alpine Region

• Breakfast is served.
• Later in the morning, tie on your apron and get ready for your second hands-on cooking class. You will be slicing, dicing, and preparing traditional Valtellina cuisine. Lunch follows and includes the food prepared in the cooking class with a toast of wine included.
• In the afternoon, under the guidance of our host, you will take the cable car to reach a height of 3000 meters and get an amazing view of the entire alpine region.
• Later in the evening, enjoy a Chef’s Tasting Menu featuring local cuisine with an antipasto, fresh pasta and sauce, main course and dessert. Wine is not included.

Day 7: Bernina Railway & Cavaglia Garden

• Breakfast is served.
• Following breakfast, check out of the Livigno accommodation and depart for Pontresina in the Engadin Valley in Switzerland. From there, you will board the Bernina Railway towards Tirano.
• Along the way, stop for a guided visit of the Cavaglia Glacier Garden, many giants’ pots created by ancient glaciations. Lunch included at fine dining restaurant near the Gardens. Wine not included.
• In the late afternoon, arrive back in Tirano and check in to your hotel.
• Dinner is on your own with suggestions provided.

Day 8: Arrivederci!

• Breakfast is served
• Check out. Meet your driver for your departure and on the way, take time to visit the historic Ciapponi Brothers food shop in Morbegno, operating since 1883 with various selections of local meat, cheese, candy, chocolate, wines, and local products as an added treat.
• Arrivederci!

Program Includes:

    • 4 nights and 5 days in Tirano 4-star accommodation.
    • 3 nights and 4 days in Livigno 4-star accommodation.
    • Welcome Dinner featuring a Chef’s full course Tasting Menu with antipasto, fresh pasta, main course and dessert. Wines and drinks not included.
    • 3 Dinners including a Chef’s Tasting Menu featuring local cuisine with an antipasto, fresh pasta and sauce, main course and dessert.  Wine is not included.
    • Lunch at local restaurant following Cavaglia Glacier Garden tour. Wine and drinks not included.
    • 2 hands-on cooking classes including the preparation of local fare. Lunch or dinner follows including the food that was prepared in the cooking class with a toast of local wine included.
    • 3 Wine Tours with a visit to the cellars with wine tastings included.
    • Guided tour of Palazzo Salis and the Basilica of Madonna di Tirano.
    • Excursion to La Gatta Estate, an ancient Dominican monestary, with guided tour and tastings of the vineyard and wine cellar.
    • Visit to Bormino wine cellars.
    • Visit to the Latteria di Livigno, the town’s Dairy store, with lunch included.
    • Cable car to Alpine Scenery Viewpoint.
    • Excursion with guided visit to Cavaglia Glacier Garden.
    • Excursion to Morbegno to see the historic Ciapponi Brothers food shop.
    • Cooking Vacations Welcome Bag with Chef’s apron, Prosecco toast and recipe booklet.

    Program Price:

$3,495 per person, based on 2 guests in a 4 Star luxury accommodation.

*Please note: One-day cooking classes do not include transportation, accommodations, or any other excursions. If you would like to add on transfers to and from your hotel or cruise ship port ~ please let us know your group size and we will be happy to reserve transfers for you. Transfers are an extra cost.