Join us at our charming 4 star Relais and guest house for a 5-day cooking and Spa adventure combining hands-on cooking with touring and a little rest and repose. Set five kilometers from the centro storico, historical center, of Perugia, often called cuore verde, green heart, is your home-away-from-home, where you will learn to cook authentic Umbrian cuisine while soaking up the slow-paced local atmosphere. Learn to cook local recipes making antipasti, fresh pasta, main course and desserts – with Etruscan roots and passed down from generation to generation.
When you are not cooking, sip a Montefalco Sagrantino, red, or Palazzone, “Campo del Guardino” Orvieto, white, and experience the precious wines of the region. During your stay, you’ll visit Perugia and also the nearby hill town of Assisi. And when you are not cooking or touring, lose yourself with a Finnish sauna, Turkish steam bath with chromotherapy and mini-pool with therapeutic whirlpool – all while sipping an herbal tea from the tisaneria, tea bar.
Join us in il cuore verde d’Italia, the green heart of Italy, whose nickname depicts rolling green pastures lined with cypress trees, evergreen landscapes and quaint charming hill towns frozen in time. Today, the landscape remains the same, resembling a fresco by Giotto painted in the Basilica of Saint Francis. Travel along the paths where ancient traditions – agricultural, artistic and spiritual – are experienced in all of the region’s historic towns. You’ll see fairy tale fortresses, castles and towers also dotting the landscape, along with vineyards producing some of Italy’s prized wines. Discover Italy’s best kept secret – Umbria – filled with chestnut groves and elm forests and spectacular aged prosciutto and artisan cheeses. Umbria also continues its long and tried tradition of ancient bread making and olive oil production. And when the leaves start to change from green to gold, indulge in their black truffles!
Perugia & Assisi
Between your cooking classes, you’ll be touring Perugia and Assisi. Perugia, Umbria’s capital, is a modern city known around the world, which still holds on to its ancient past. It is home to the 14th-century University of Perugia, one of Italy’s oldest and most well respected educational institutions, a weave of ancient architecture and student caffès that bustle with life at all hours. The town’s main piazza, Piazza IV Novembre, is surrounded by splendid ancient buildings and is generally thought to be Perugia’s most attractive square.
Landmarks include the Fontana Maggiore, a beautiful medieval fountain that was built in the 12th Century; the Galleria Nazionale dell’Umbria brimming with local art, and the Cattedrale di San Lorenzo, Perugia’s gothic cathedral. There are many bars, caffès and trattorias where you can take a front row seat on the terrace and order up an aperitivo, prosecco, spritz or vino bianco and watch the world go by.
Tour Assisi, the birthplace of Saint Francis of Assisi, founder of the Franciscan order and one of the most popular saints in history. The 13th-century Basilica di San Francesco is adorned with frescos painted by a young Giotto where he depicts the life of Saint Francis. This basilica also houses Saint Francis in the crypt. Assisi is also home to Rocca Maggiore, a medieval fortress and the Basilica di Santa Chiara.
Roll up your sleeves, tie on your apron and join Chef Marco and his team in the kitchen for hands-on cooking in the heart of Umbria. Much of the cuisine of Umbria originates from its Etruscan roots, and its recipes passed down through generations. Like all Italian cooking, it is simple, rustic and traditional. Food is prepared with fresh seasonal ingredients from local family farms. Seasonal produce, vegetables and herbs include wild mushrooms and asparagus, beans, lentils, black and white truffles, farm raised beef and pork raised on the Umbrian hills, duck and wild hare, as well artisan pecorino di Pienza, local sheep’s milk cheese. You’ll also discover the prized local olive oil Umbria is so famous for.
Under the guidance of Chef Marco you’ll learn how to turn simple produce and ingredients into delicious Umbrian cuisine including crostini al tartufo, toasted bread with black or white truffles and olive oil, strangozzi, long flat pasta served with black truffles or spicy tomato sauce, pappardelle alla lepre, pasta with a wild rabbit ragù seasoned with bacon and cloves and bringoli al sugo finto, hand-made pasta with tomato sauce. Main dishes might include pork loin in a crust of herbs, wild rabbit with rosemary, sage and white wine, chicken in porchetta or even sausages cooked with grapes. Always end on a sweet note with Umbrian desserts like pinolate, dried round biscuits made with almonds and pine nuts, cicerchiata, a honey and almond ring or chiacchiere, flash-fried ribbons of dough – just to name a few local sweet temptations. We also accommodate any diet or food allergy requests. Following each cooking class, everyone dines on the foods that were prepared in class with a toast of local red or white wine.
During your stay, check into our 4-star property which retains its antique structure and is adorned with modern restoration, all while respecting its historic past. A warm reception and common area welcome you with a professional staff member for all of your needs. Guest rooms are elegantly furnished with bright modern finishings – hard wood floors and high wood-beamed ceiling with private ensuite bath. Each room is complete with television, telephone, satellite TV, hair drier, Wi-Fi and a safe for valuables.
The property boasts an authentic organic restaurant serving daily breakfast, with a varied assortment of Umbrian cakes, biscotti, breads, jams and cornetti. They also serve lunch and dinner including a full course menu of local specialties, along with an extensive wine list. There is also a full-service spa with a Finnish sauna, therapeutic spa shower, Turkish bath with aromatherapy, minipool with therapeutic hydro-massage, and even a wine grape massage.
Enveloped within a historic courtyard including a swimming pool, this unique property makes our Umbria Cooking, Wine & Spa tour a must!
Itinerary ~ 5 Days, 4 Nights
Day 1: Arrival & Check In
- Pick up and transfer from Perugia Train Station to the property.
- Check in, relax and sit by the outdoor pool (weather permitting) or enjoy time in our Wellness Spa.
- In the evening, enjoy a Chef’s Welcome Dinner. Taste Umbria’s rustic fare in the property’s organic restaurant. Vegetarian dishes or anything special upon request. Toast of local red or white wine, included.
Day 2: Perugia & Cooking Class 1
- Breakfast is served.
- After breakfast, your driver will pick you up for a private half day excursion to Perugia. Visit the Galleria Nazionale dell’Umbria brimming with local art and the Cattedrale di San Lorenzo, Perugia’s gothic cathedral. Stroll the ancient streets to Piazza IV Novembre and view the Fontana Maggiore in its center. Stop in to one of the many trattorias for a typical Perugia lunch. (Not included.)
- In the afternoon, your Cooking Class 1. Tie on your apron and head for the kitchen as Chef Marco shares with you his favorite Umbrian family recipes. The menu includes a primo, such as handmade pasta, main dish and of course, dessert. Dinner follows with everyone sitting at our table, eating the foods prepared in class. Toast with a great glass of local red or white wine, included.
Day 3: Asissi & Wellness Spa & Relax
- Breakfast is served.
- After breakfast, meet your driver as you set out on your half day tour of the tranquil hill town of Assisi. Explore the quaint cobblestone streets in this, the birthplace of the Patron Saint of Italy, St. Francis. Visit the Basilica di San Francesco, adorned with frescoes painted by Giotto portraying his life, as well as the Rocca Maggiore, a medieval fortress and the Basilica di Santa Chiara. Stroll to Piazza del Comune, the main square built on the site of a Roman forum. Here you can have lunch in one of its many cafés and restaurants.
- Return to the property.
- In the afternoon, relax and rejuvenate in our Wellness Spa. Let our professional staff pamper you with a relaxing massage, included. Unwind in our Finnish sauna, therapeutic spa shower, Turkish bath with aromatherapy or minipool with therapeutic hydromassage. Sip a cup of herbal tea from our tisaneria, tea bar. Total Spa time included is 2 hours.
- Dinner on your own. Suggestions provided.
Day 4: Cooking Class 2
- Breakfast is served.
- After breakfast, enjoy a visit to the property’s wine cellar with tasting included. Then, spend some time exploring your surroundings or soaking up the sun by the pool.
- In the afternoon, roll up your sleeves for Cooking Class 2. The menu includes a primo, such as handmade pasta, a main dish and dessert.
- Dinner follows with everyone sitting at our table, eating the foods prepared in class. Toast with a great glass of local red or white wine, included.
Day 5: Check out & Departure
- Breakfast is served.
- Check out & departure. Pack your delicious recipes and your wonderful memories as we say arrivederci!
- Departure Transfer to Perugia Train Station.
- 5 days, 4 nights’ accommodations in the charming 4 star Perugia Guest House, with ensuite private baths, air conditioning, telephone, satellite TV, mini bar, safe for valuables and Wi-Fi internet connection, based on double occupancy.Click to View!
- Daily breakfast and maid service.
- Chef’s Welcome Dinner on your first evening, including a glass of local red or white wine.
- 2 hands-on cooking classes including the preparation of a 3-course traditional menu including fresh pasta making, lasting about 3 hours. Lunch or dinner follows on the foods prepared in class. A toast of local wine and water included.
- Half day excursion to Perugia with driver (Private tour guide available on request).
- Half day excursion to Assisi with driver (Private tour guide available on request).
- 2 hours in our Wellness Spa with services including Finnish Sauna, Theraputic Spa Shower, Turkish Bath with aromatherapy, minipool with therapeutic hydromassage and Herbal Tea corner.
- 1 hour Relaxing Massage.
- Visit to the property’s wine cellar with tasting.
- Welcome bag with Chef’s apron & Recipe booklet.
- Round trip transfers from Perugia Train Station.
- Wi-Fi Internet connection available.
$1,595 per person based on double occupancy.
*An Italian visitor tax may apply in some cities and must be paid directly on site at check out.