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Aprons On With Chef Antonio™

Portofino & Cinque Terre’s Riviera ~ 8 Day

Cooking Tours
Prices & Dates
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Liguria stirs up images of nature’s landscape of Cinque Terre, zesty pesto pasta and picturesque Portofino. This area of Italy, referred to as the Italian Riveria of Levante, stretches 110 miles of coast and to the hills in Northern Italy. Chef Antonio brings you into the heart of the Riviera di Levante for a hands-on cooking experience that reveals the secrets behind authentic Ligurian cuisine. In this charming location, enjoy hosts Barbara and Marcello’s hospitality and prepare foods accompanied by local wine sipped in their beautiful Mediterranean garden. Explore the history of Ligurian cuisine and learn how to prepare it under the guidance of our skillful Chef. Basil pesto sauce, oven baked focaccia, farinata, and homemade pastas-trofie and pansoti. Discover Ligurian cuisine and visit Cinque Terre & Portofino during your cooking class on the Italian Riviera.

Cooking Classes

Join Chef Antonio and hosts Barbara and Marcello in Sestri Levante for traditional Ligurian cooking. The cuisine is based on the extremely simple concept including oven baked focaccia, farinata and testaieu; homemade pasta-trofie, pansoti, mandilli, and corzetti served with the zesty basil pesto or a light seafood sauce. Fish indigenous to the area, such as Bagnun, Cappon Magro and Burrida are delicious whether baked or broiled. Cooking classes are hands-on, as Chef Antonio will soon have you turning out fabulous Ligurian foods, perfect for recreating back at home. Lunch or dinner follows each cooking class on the foods prepared in class with local wines included. Menus vary based on the season to use the best fresh ingredients from the market each day, and can be tailored to accommodate food allergies and diet needs.

Liguria

The world famous Italian Riviera is situated in Liguria; this crescent-shaped strip of land is the most famed and visited area of the Italian coastline. With its capital city of Genoa, it is sometimes referred to as il Golfo dei Poeti, or the Gulf of Poets. Liguria beckoned such literary greats as Lord Byron and Percy Shelley, who found inspiration in its lemon groves, almond blossoms, and turquoise seas. The region’s claim to fame is undoubtedly the Cinque Terre, which translates to the Five Lands. Hidden in tiny coves along the Ligurian Riviera, five small, charming towns are connected by a breathtakingly scenic hiking path, and are also accessible by train or boat. In addition to the Cinque Terre, Liguria is a veritable treasure trove of hidden gems-from Portofino to the less-touristy Portovenere and Moneglia, but wherever you are, you can be sure it will take your breath away.

Sestri Levante

Sestri Levante is a beautiful town on the Italian Riviera, just 50 km from Genova. A short trip from the famous Cinque Terre, Sestri Levante is fast becoming a favorite with visitors and tourists eager to spend time in this once quiet fishing village set on a striking promontory. Sestri is best known for the beauty of its surroundings, its gorgeous bays, Baia delle Favole, Bay of Fairytales, named in honor of Hans Christian Anderson who lived in Sestri for a short time in 1835, and Baia del Silenzio, Bay of Silence, and its charming historic center. The Baia delle Favole is in the more animated part of town with its port, fashionable bathing establishments and shops lining the promenade, while the Baia del Silenzio is quieter and less modern, its small port full of the fishing boats that still play an important part in the local economy. The town’s historic center is a maze of narrow streets and alleys, and is packed with beautiful antique buildings, often complete with pretty balconies and hidden gardens. Many of these villas were once the holiday homes of Genova’s ruling class, and are surrounded by lush Mediterranean shrubbery, with vines, olive trees, palms and bougainvillea.

Accommodations

Your accommodations and cooking are held in a family owned and managed B&B with five elegantly appointed rooms in the Sestri Levante countryside. Originally an ancient road inspector’s house, the building was restored and opened as an Inn with restaurant in 2004. Each Maritime-style room has a private bathroom, satellite TV, safe, telephone and wi-fi Internet access free of charge. Two of the rooms are furnished with four-poster beds in wrought iron reminiscent of old style Ligurian houses. Two of the larger rooms have Provençal style wooden roofs and are situated in the park with private garden, while the Superior Suite with more than 30 square meters of space, has a balcony and can accommodate up to 4 people.

Itinerary: 8 days, 7 nights

Day 1: Arrival & Welcome Dinner

  • Transfer from Genova or Pisa airport or train station and check-in with welcome drink.
  • Relax and free time in the afternoon.
  • Welcome Dinner is served. Wines and liqueurs included.

Day 2: Sestri Levante & Cooking Class 1

  • Breakfast is served in the Mediterranean garden.
  • After breakfast, guided visit to Sestri Levante, with tasting of the local focaccia at lunch.
  • Afternoon – return to hotel for your Cooking Class 1 with Chef Alessandro and learn how to make the area’s famous pesto sauce using sweet basil, garlic, pine nuts, Ligurian olive oil and Parmesan cheese. Early evening dinner follows with foods prepared during the lesson, with local wines included.

Day 3: Cinque Terre ~ Walk The Five Lands

  • Breakfast is served in the Mediterranean garden.
  • After breakfast, visit the Cinque Terre National Park and enjoy lunch in Vernazza in a renowned restaurant. Choose to stroll the famous Via Dell’Amore, Lovers’ Walk, or take the train from town to town through the five lands clinging to the Ligurian coastline.
  • Return to the B&B in the late afternoon, or choose to stay in the 5 Terre for dinner and an evening stroll.
  • Evening free.

Day 4: Free Morning or Vineyard Visit, Cooking Class 2

  • Breakfast is served in the Mediterranean garden.
  • After breakfast, free morning on the beach, weather permitting, or visit to a local vineyard to learn about the local wines, and of course, tastings.
  • Late afternoon, return to the B&B for Cooking Class 2 with Chef Antonio. Learn to prepare the medieval fish dish Bagnun, or other local seasonal specialties. Early evening dinner follows with foods that were prepared during the cooking class, with local wines included.

Day 5: Portofino By Boat & Camogli

  • Breakfast is served in the Mediterranean garden.
  • After breakfast, boat trip to the beautiful town of Portofino with a visit to the Abbey of San Fruttuoso.
  • Visit to Camogli, known as the town of tall ships.
  • Dinner in Sestri Levante to taste the ‘focaccia col formaggio di Recco‘.

Day 6: Visit To Fontanabuona Valley & Cheese Maker

  • Breakfast is served in the Mediterranean garden.
  • After breakfast, guided visit the Fontanabuona Valley and its fascinating slate caves.
  • Visit to the picturesque village of Varese Ligure, (considered one of the ‘borghi più belli‘ ‘most beautiful villages’ of Italy), the town center and to a local cheese maker.
  • Lunch and dinner in a local trattoria included.

Day 7: Fishing Trip, Cooking Class 3

  • Breakfast is served in the Mediterranean garden.
  • After breakfast, a fabulous trip out on a fishing boat for a full day with lunch served on board.
  • Afternoon, return to the B&B for your Cooking Class 3, followed by early evening dinner and includes foods that were prepared in the cooking class, with local wine included.

Day 8: Departure & Arrivederci!

  • Breakfast is served.
  • Departure transfer and Arrivederci!

*Note: This schedule may vary due to inclement weather, saint days or festivals. All activities, in the event of rescheduling, are always included during the program.

Program Includes:

  • 8 days/ 7 nights accommodations, based on double occupancy.
  • Daily breakfast.
  • Arrival and departure transfers from Genova or Pisa airport or train station.
  • Welcome drink at check-in.
  • Welcome dinner first night.
  • 3 Hands-on Cooking Classes followed by lunch or dinner and include foods that were prepared in the cooking class.
  • Trip to Cinque Terre National Park with lunch in a restaurant in Vernazza.
  • Visit to local vineyard with tastings (depending on weather and season).
  • Trip to Portofino by boat, with visit to the Abbey of San Fruttuoso and to Camogli.
  • Dinner in a restaurant in Sestri Levante with ‘Focaccia col Formaggio di Recco’.
  • Guided visit to the Fontanabuona Valley and its slate caves.
  • Visit to Varese Ligure and local cheese farms. Lunch and dinner in a local agriturismo.
  • Fishing trip boat tour with lunch served on board.
Program Prices

$3,195 per person, based on double occupancy. All taxes and Italian VAT included.
$250 Single Supplement.

Check Availability

2019 Dates: This program is available March 1 to November 30. You can check in and start your cooking program any day of the week, with a minimum 2-night stay. 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.