Ciao Boston™

Cooking Italian With Mamma Maria & Lauren In Boston

Cooking Tours
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Cooking In Boston With My Mamma Maria And Me!

Join my Mamma Marie, chef, pasta maker and baker, and me, as we share our family recipes and love of food, art and music in hands-on cooking classes in historical Boston. We welcome you to our kitchen, introduce you to the art of Italian cooking, then dine on the delicious foods that were prepared using organic in-season ingredients.  Everyone enjoys lunch or dinner around the table together while sipping wine and sharing food notes on the cooking class.

We’ll lead you hands-on creating delicate pastas, antipasti, main courses and desserts in small groups of no more than six guests. You’ll discover and taste precious wines with pouring by Rino, my Italian husband and wine expert whose grandfather was a wine maker in southern Italy. Rino is proud of his Italian heritage and the precious wine that Italy produces. Join our family for a taste of healthy food and excellent wine as we cook, learn and make new friends.

This delicious food adventure includes: three hands-on cooking classes, two Food Lovers’ tours – brimming with tastings, along with a chef’s tasting dinner in historic Boston. We’ll visit the North End, Back Bay and Beacon Hill, the oldest fish market, and even the Isabella Gardner Museum and her collection of Italian art. Mrs. Gardner, after all, was a pioneer in entertaining with traditional fare during the 1800s at her Back Bay villa on Beacon Street.

Tie on your apron and get ready to slice, dice, sip and swirl, while enjoying excellent food and wine with our family!

Boston Cooking Classes & Wine Pairings

Our program includes three hands-on cooking classes with dinner paired with select wine.  I learned the secrets of Italian cooking from my two grandmothers, both from Italy, along with my mom. I’ve also participated in endless culinary school classes and am now thrilled to share my passion for cooking with you.

In each cooking class we’ll make regional  Italian foods where my mom and I show you how! Starting with antipasto: fiori di zucca ripieni – stuffed squash flowers, zucchini oreganata, thinly sliced baked squash garnished with special spice and breadcrumb garnish, involtini di melanzane, stuffed rolled eggplant, polpettini di melanzane, eggplant bites – to name a few. You’ll learn the art of rolling out gnocchi, stuffing ravioli Capresi and toasting risotto, and authentic Bolognese – the authentic recipe from Bologna.  Main courses follow with specialties such as spigola al limone, sea bass with organic lemon sauce, pesce all’acqua pazza, cod steamed with a light garlic and cherry tomato sauce, vitello Positanese, veal Positano-style, and pollo con le erbe e limone, pollo with herbs and lemon sauce. Each dinner ends with hand-made desserts such as: torta, cake, semi-freddo, biscotti and crostate.

After each class, everyone enjoys the food that was prepared in class accompanied with red or white wine. We cater to food allergies, and menus change with the season with both Italian and New England fare.

Learn about local foods of Boston, like clam chowder and Boston Cream Pie, clam cakes and clam chowder, and lobster – with Italian recipes too. Taste your way through Copley Square, the Freedom Trail and along Charles Street, as we explore interesting artisan food shops and markets while learning interesting food history.

During your stay in Boston, check in to your boutique hotel located in the heart of the Back Bay with private ensuite bathrooms, old-world style with modern comforts including a cafe, restaurant and health spa.  Your home-away-from home is steps from the Public Garden, Copley Square, Prudential, and Boston Common.

If you love food, art, music and the literati scene, you’ll love this tour hosted by my mamma and me.  Join us in the kitchen as we slice, dice, bake and dine stateside, while soaking up the beauty and culture of Boston.

A Note On Boston

America was founded in Boston by a brave group of English Puritans who fled their country for religious freedom in 1620. When they arrived at their new land, they named it Boston after Boston in England. These men and women were patriots; they fought for life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness – and succeed. That is why I love my city and am so happy to be able to share this tour with you. We welcome you with our Italian hospitality and American culture!

Boston Cream Pie, Colonial Chocolate & Baked Beans

Boston may be best known for its famous Boston Baked Beans, Boston Cream Pie, Fenway Park, the Boston Marathon, and its all-star sports teams, but dig a little deeper and you’ll discover what makes Boston one of the greatest foodie cities on the planet!  There’s the Charles Street markets, the North End Italian neighborhood hot chocolate was a very popular beverage in the 1700s, and was served frequently to guests at the time to guests of Martha and George Washington, along with James Hook & Company fish market and restaurant where seafood is still sold everyday when the boats come in!

Boston Tea Party, Paul Revere’s Midnight Ride & the U.S. Constitution

Citizens of Boston rebelled against the high tax on tea on December 16, 1773, at Griffin’s walk when they threw all the tea overboard in the Boston Harbor. It was called the Tea Party Revolution, a political and mercantile protest by the Sons of Liberty.  American colonists strongly opposed the “taxation without representation,” in the Townshend Act as a violation of their rights. In turn, they dumped 3,442 chests of tea imported by the British East India Company into the Boston Harbor.  At the Tea Party Museum see actors dressed in garb recreating this scene, while dining on New England fare of the time.

Then, there’s Paul Revere who made his famous ride – with the secret message, one if by land or two if by sea, at the Old North Church on April 18, 1775.  Also note, the US Constitution was ratified at the Green Dragon Tavern on April 6, 1778 in Boston.  Step inside the historical pub and walk in the footsteps of Sam Adams, John Hancock and Paul Revere.

Boston is a city of history with so much to see and do!  There’s also Old Ironside in the Navy Yard, The Freedom Trail, Monument Square where the Bunker Hill Monument was erected to commemorate the Battle of Bunker Hill. It was the first major battle place that took place between British and Patriot forces in the American Revolutionary War, fought there June 17, 1775.

We have Faneuil Hall America’s first marketplace and meeting place located near the waterfront by Government Center. Opened in 1743, it was the site of several speeches by Samuel Adams, James Otis and the Sons of Liberty. Called the Cradle of Liberty, it’s a great place for shopping and dining – filled with lovely restaurants, a food court and street performers.

Discover Delicious Food In “The City of Firsts!”

Boston is a city of firsts: the first public park, the Boston Common (opened in 1634); the first public school, Boston Latin (opened in 1635), the first subway system in the nation and the first telephone, even Facebook was discovered here!  It was also the first city to administer anaesthesia – performed by Boston dentist William T.G. Morton on October 16, 1846 at Massachusetts General Hospital.

It’s the home of the Boston Museum of Fine Arts – 17th largest art museum in the world showcasing over 450,000 works of art, the Boston Public Library founded in 1848, the world-famous Museum of Science, the Boston Symphony Orchestra, Berklee School of Music, Huntington Theatre Company, the Boch Center and the Opera House, to name a few. And it’s ranked 8th in the entire world for best student cities – nicknamed the Athens of America! It’s home to Harvard, MIT, Boston University, Boston College, Emerson and Tufts… When you come to Boston, you may never want to leave!


Boston Itinerary: 5 Days & 4 Nights


Thursday: Benvenuto & Chef’s Tasting Dinner

Arrival & check-in. Refresh and relax with an aperitivo. Read over the contents of your Welcome Bag including helpful information that will acquaint you with Boston.  Included in your welcome bag: your own professional Chef’s apron, a welcome bottle of Prosecco, along with general information on landmarks, shopping, museums and good places to dine.  We’ve even got our own Boston Restaurant Hot Picks list.

Later in the evening, you will be served a Chef’s Tasting Dinner with wine included.

Cooking Class & North End Food Lover’s Tour

We will start the evening with our olive oil tasting made in Italy accompanied with organic olives.  The tasting includes four types of extra virgin first-cold-pressed olive oil -natural, lemon, rosemary and chili pepper.  While sipping on bubbly Prosecco, learn about the olive varieties, the season for picking, how they are picked and the method of pressing with tastings too.  We grow our own olives in a beautiful orchard in southern Italy and press them on cold stones in the fall.

Tie on your aprons and get ready to cook! You’ll be slicing, dicing and participating in hands-on making antipasto, pasta and dessert. Step by step my mom and me will lead you in the kitchen making a full course meal. Everyone enjoys the foods that were prepared in class together at the table. Rino pairs and pours, then everyone toasts with a glass of local red or white wine. Bon appetito!

Day 1: North End Food Lovers’ Tour with Tastings & Cooking Class

We’ll meet in the morning, then head to our famous fishmonger.  Together, we will tour this Water Front landmark, shop with the chef for the daily catch which we will cook later in our cooking class, then try a sample of a New England bite.  Next, we venture to the North End of Boston for a Landmark Food Tour with delicious foods from Italy. We’ll visit the fruit and vegetable market, the salumeria, the fish and meat shops and learn how to shop like an Italian Mamma!

We’ll visit my Signora Adriana, third generation owner of my favorite Italian caffè. She bakes the pastry and makes gelato every day while entertaining guests with the soccer scores, great conversation and recipe tips that date back to her great-grandmother. This landmark spot has been making cappuccinos and serving Italian delights since 1960. Learn about Italian pastries, biscotti and gelato – and the food history of Italians when they first made their way to Boston’s North End. Tastings included. Next, we visit the Italian market and bread shop with the finest Italian products: artisan cheese, Prosciutto, spices, bread and olives – to name a few. Following, we will visit a famous panificio, bread shop, featuring loaves of golden baked beauties of bread. Tastings included.

We’ll walk to the Old North Church which is the oldest standing church in the City of Boston founded in 1723 and made famous by Paul Revere’s midnight ride. Learn about the story of chocolate and how it first arrived in Boston; and how Martha Washington brewed her own recipe for hot chocolate and spiced it with cinnamon, fennel, chili pepper and nutmeg. Sip Martha’s hot chocolate and purchase a bag of her original recipe in the gift shop.

Enjoy the rest of the afternoon on your own with a visit Old Ironside, in the Charlestown Navy Yard, hop on an Old Town Trolley and head to the Tea Party Museum. There’s the Boston Museum of Science, the Museum of Fine Arts or simply trolling the Freedom Trail soaking up American history!

Day 2: Back Bay & Beacon Hill Food Lovers’ & Cooking Class with Olive Oil Tasting.

Everyone meets in the morning for a Food Lover’s Tour of the Back Bay and Beacon Hill. Learn about our founding fathers who came, conquered and pioneered America’s first city. We start at the Boston Common – the duck pond and the famous bronzed ducklings, whose book, Make Way For Ducklings was written by Robert McCloseky (published in 1941). You’ll learn about John Blackstone, one of the first Puritans who arrived on Beacon Hill in 1630 and built the first Public Garden.

Then, we continue along Charles Street and Louisburg Square soaking up American history, culture and the aristocrat way of life in one of Boston’s most prestigious neighborhoods. During the tour, we for a steamy coffee or tea and soak up the local caffe society while nibbling on baked goods.

Next, we make our way to famous market that’s filled with prized farm-raised produce, artisan cheese, jams and marmalades, poultry, meat fish, for a tasting of all things Boston and New England. You’ll learn about Boston baked beans, Boston cream pie and clam chowder – even our locally grown cranberries. This historical market is owned and operated by a well-known Bostonian family who has been serving locals since 1919 – even President John F. Kennedy, and historian Samuel Elliot Morison shopped here.

Tie on your aprons and get ready to cook! You’ll be slicing, dicing and participating in hands-on making antipasto, pasta and dessert. Step by step my mom and me will lead you in the kitchen making a full course meal. Everyone enjoys the foods that were prepared in class together at the table. Rino pairs and pours, then everyone toasts with a glass of local red or white wine. Bon appetito!

Day 3: Isabella Gardener Museum

We’ll head to the Fenway and visit the Isabella Gardner Museum, designed after after a 15th century Venetian Palazzo. Ms. Gardner was a passionate patron of the arts and spent her life collecting European, Asian, and American art including Sargent, Rubens and Whistler. The museum is home to a delightful bistro and gift shop with artisan crafts, rare books and more.

Lunch is on your own. The afternoon is free to visit walk the Freedom Trail, take the Red Line to Harvard Square or stroll Copley Square.

Day 5: Cooking Class – Piccolo Dolce, Little Sweets

Morning is free to explore the area, shop or visit the Boston Public Library and Tea Room (suggestion).

In the afternoon, return to the kitchen for your cooking class featuring piccolo dolce, little sweets. Tie on your aprons and get ready to bake!  You’ll learn the art of Italian dessert making in hands-on.  Step by step my mom and me will lead you in the kitchen making three kinds of biscotti. Rino pairs and pours, then everyone toasts with a glass of local red or white wine.  All of the cookies that are baked are then boxed so you can carry them home and share with your loved ones.  Bon appetito!

Day 5: Ciao and good-bye until next time.

*Note: This sample itinerary schedule may vary due to inclement weather, holidays or rallies on the Boston Common.  All activities, in the event of rescheduling, are always included during your tour. 

Program Includes:

  • 5 day and 4 nights in a boutique style hotel with private ensuite bath, cafe, restaurant and health spa.
  • Three hands-on cooking classes, with lunch or dinner following. Red or white wine included.
  • Full course Chef’s Tasting Menu on your first night arrival with a toast of wine included.
    (Additional wine, beverages, after-dinner liqueurs and caffè available at a surcharge).
  • A delicious Food Lovers’ Tour – visit the North End of Boston with tastings.
  • Shopping with the Chef Food Lover’s Tasting Tour – visit through the Back Bay, Beacon Hill and Public Garden.
  • Olive Oil Tasting with informal discussion and tastings.
  • Prosecco toast included.
  • Visit to the Gardner Museum, with museum tickets included.
  • Visit to the Waterfront for tour and lunch at Boston’s oldest fish markets – vegetarian options available. Welcome bag with chef’s apron, recipe booklet, and information booklet and a bottle of Cooking Vacations olive oil.
  • Welcome Prosecco cocktail.
Program Prices

$2,495 per person.

If you would like hotel suggestions or round trip airport transfers, please let us know.

This program allows each guest to select their own hotel or use travel points.

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