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Sardinia & The Costa Smeralda™

Sardinia Cooking & Wine Tour Tasting ~ 8 Day

Join Chefs Savio and Maria on the island of Sardinia for hands-on cooking!  Shop with the chef, tour the outdoor marketplace and discover the local flavors of sunny Sardinia!

Sardinia, Italy’s magical island, is rich in food, wine and stories – not to mention its gorgeous white beaches, Mediterranean climate and sumptuous beauty!  Discover Sardinia, the Costa Smeralda, Barbagia and Orgosolo as you cook, sip local wine and discover the Blue Zones!

Cooking and food culture blend in Olbia near the Costa Smeralda for a one-of-a-kind food lover’s cooking tour.  Check into your charming hotel accommodations in the historic town amidst trattorias, wine bars, restaurants, artisan shops and historical landmarks.  During your stay, explore the secrets of local Sardinian cuisine while slicing, dicing, mixing and cooking.  Learn how to make antipasti, fresh pasta, seasonal sauces, fish and meat main courses, along with delicious desserts. Although Sardinia is noted for its meat and fish, vegetarian and gluten free menus are available upon request.

Learn how to mix and cut the famous fregola pasta with a hearty tomato sauce or prepare fresh seafood and fish in slow-cooked pomodoro salsa. When you are not cooking, you’ll visit an award-winning winery with wine tastings and Sardinian finger foods.  Join Chef Savio and Maria in hands-on cooking classes along with warm-hearted locals in sunny Sardinia!  When you are not cooking and touring, soak up the cerulean blue sea and beaches and the natural beauty that is unique to Italy’s southern Island.

Cooking Classes in Sardinia

Tie on your aprons and join Chef Savio at the Chef’s Tasting Dinner and Chef Maria in her Sardinian kitchen. Their knowledge and know-how will have you cooking like a local in no time.  Together, you will learn how to make malloreddus and fregola with Sardinian sauces including lamb and sausage with herbs, tomato, seafood and saffron. Main courses include zuppa di pesce, an assortment of fish in a creamy tomato sauce along with burrida, fish in a broth with celery, carrot, onion, and lemon, and aragosta alla Catalana, with lobster, tomatoes, onions, oil and lemon. Desserts are a must. Think papassini, biscotti perfect for dipping into coffee, tiliccas, a honey and toasted almond sweet, and seada, a flaky, fried pastry puff stuffed with ricotta, orange zest and herbs, and drizzled with honey.  Following the cooking classes, everyone enjoys the food that was prepared in the cooking class with Sardinian wine and liqueur.

Sardinia

The second largest island in the Mediterranean, Sardinia is as famous for its mountainous inland areas as it is for its long stretches of white beaches.  Sardinia has a rich history of invaders including the Greeks, Phoenicians and Romans. It was later colonized by the Pisans, Spaniards and Austrians, leaving their marks on architecture and food. The island offers an untouched countryside with highlands and coastline, along with numerous natural reserves where you’ll find herons, flamingoes, wild pigs, deer, Peregrine falcons, golden eagles and griffin vultures.

Town of Olbia

Charming Olbia is a town set in the province of Sassari just south of Sardinia’s Costa Smeralda.  It is known for its excellent local cuisine, splendid sea and relaxing beaches. The northern coast offers crystalline waters and a myriad of turquoise inlets. In the 7th century B.C., the Greeks arrived and named it Olbia, meaning happiness. But archeological findings suggest Olbia was first settled by the Phoenicians, with other invaders who followed.  Guests come to Olbia for the food and wine and landmarks, including Basilica of San Simplicio and the Parco Nazionale dell’Arcipelago.  It is an interesting destination filled with restaurants, wine bars and artisan shops.

Costa Smeraldo

This excursion into the luxury world of Costa Smeralda begins with a delicious visit to a characteristic local market and a stunning picture of the magic Dolomites of San Pantaleo. After a short drive, you will discover Costa Smeralda’s most enigmatic borgo: the little town of Arzachena and its famous Mushroom Rock. The crown jewel of the tour is beautiful Porto Cervo with its white church, Stella Maris. On the way to Cala di Volpe, you will stop at a scenic landscape for a gorgeous photo opportunity spanning the entire coast.

Arzachena

Sip and swirl on this romantic wine tour that combines delicious Sardinian food, wine and picturesque landscapes.  During this tour, you will visit one of the most famous wineries on the Island and enjoy Vermentino di Gallura, the iconic Cannonau and Sardinian Rosè.  Discover the method of winemaking the old-world way while your English-speaking guide shares the history of winemaking.  Following the tour, watch the sun set from San Pantaleo’s pink granite mountains.

Gallura

This UNESCO site is listed with one of the oldest wild olive tree valleys on Liscia Lake. Driving through green valleys of olive groves, cork oaks and vineyards, you will reach the borough of Luras and its top attraction – the old house of Galluras, which is situated northeast of Sardinia and renowned for its remarkable natural beauty. The acclaimed Emerald Coast, which has been a playground for the rich and famous since the early 60s. While its beaches draw all the attention, there are many fascinating aspects to the region: it’s steeped in history, rich in traditions and boasts wonderful food, wine and local artisan products. On this tour, there is a visit to the granitic town of Tempio and its Nuragic Tower.

La Barbagia

Barbagia is a vast mountainous region in the Blue Zone and extends alongside the Gennargentu massif. Here you will find the heart and soul of this magical island. Visit Monte Ortobene, see the Redeemer’s bronze Statue and admire the magnificent view or enjoy artisan shops and caffes. After a short drive through the mountains, you will reach Orgosolo, known for its wall paintings. Experience lunch with the shepherds, including traditional Sardinian food – roasted artisan cheese, sausages, Sardinian bread, suckling pig and broiled lamb with wine included. Barbagia is one of four places on the globe where a remarkably high percentage of the longest-living people live.

Sardinian Wine

Discover the precious wines of Sardinia on our wine tour and during your cooking classes. The crown jewel of Sardinian wines is Cannonau whose chemical composition favors the body’s wellness due to the high content of flavonoids, a natural antioxidant. Vermentino, a white variety, is another favorite on the island that pairs well with the artisan cheeses and farm-to-table meats.

Sardinia Accommodations

Check into your 4-star luxury hotel set in the heart of Olbia. It is conveniently located in the heart of the historic center and close to artisan shops, restaurants and wine bars.  Each room is beautifully decorated with comfortable beds, linens and an ensuite private bath.  The property offers luxury surroundings including a bistro restaurant, spa and fitness room, sauna, Turkish bath, hydromassage pool and laundry service.  There is complimentary wireless internet access in the room, hair dryers and air conditioning. Breakfast is served daily and includes coffee, tea, juices, artisan cakes, biscotti, fruit, cheese and cereal, cappuccino, espresso, tea and fresh juices.

Itinerary ~ 8 Days, 7 Nights

Day One: Arrival & Welcome

• Transfer from Olbia airport or train station to the property.
• Arrival and check-in.  Enjoy your Cooking Vacations Welcome Bag and Prosecco.
• Welcome Dinner including our Chef’s Tasting Menu with an antipasto, fresh pasta and sauce, main course and dessert of Sardinian fare with local wine and liqueur included.

Day Two: Cooking Class 1 & Wine Tour with Tasting

• Breakfast is served.
• Following breakfast, Cooking Class 1.  Tie on your apron for your Sardinian cooking class preparing a full-course Sardinian fare lunch with local wine included.  Following the cooking class, everyone enjoys the food that was prepared in the cooking class with local wine included.
• After the cooking class, meet your driver for a visit to an award-winning winery with wine tour, tastings with traditional finger foods and artisan cheese.
• Following the tour, return to the property.
• Dinner is on your own with suggestions provided.

Day Three: The Blue Zone – Discover Barbagia and Orgosolo

• Discover the Blue Zone of Sardinia in the central region of Barbagia, a beautiful mountainous region that extends alongside the Gennargentu massif. Here you will find the heart and soul of this magical island. Visit Monte Ortobene, see the Redeemer’s bronze Statue and admire the magnificent view. There are artisan shops and caffes.
• Visit Orgosolo and the Murals where the average age is over one hundred!
• Experience lunch with the shepherds, including traditional Sardinian food – roasted artisan cheese, sausages, Sardinian bread, suckling pig and broiled lamb with wine included.
• Following your full-day tour, return to the property.
• Evening is free with dinner on your own with suggestions provided.

Day Four: Shopping with the Chef & Cooking Class 2

• Breakfast is served.
• Following breakfast, join our chef for a market tour and shopping with the chef experience.  Discover the seasonal fruits, vegetables and produce of the local farmers as she explains ingredients and how she will use them in traditional recipes.  Following the market tour, tie on your aprons for Cooking Class 2.
• Tie on your aprons for Cooking Class 2 preparing a full-course Sardinian menu with local wine included.  Following the cooking class, everyone enjoys the food that was prepared in the cooking class with local wine included.
• Evening is free to relax, walk through Olbia and enjoy the sights.

Day Five: Gallura – Discover the Sardinian Countryside

• Breakfast is served.
• Following breakfast, meet your driver for an excursion to Gallura, a UNESCO site with one of the oldest wild olive tree valleys on Liscia Lake. Driving through green valleys of olive groves, cork oaks and vineyards, you will reach the borough of Luras and its top attraction – the old house of Galluras, which is situated northeast of Sardinia and renowned for its remarkable natural beauty. The acclaimed Emerald Coast, which has been a playground for the rich and famous since the early 60s. While its beaches draw all the attention, there are many fascinating aspects to the region: it’s steeped in history, rich in traditions and boasts wonderful food, wine and local artisan products. On this tour, there is a visit to the granitic town of Tempio and its Nuragic Tower.
• Take time out for lunch on your own
• Following lunch, return through the countryside and return to the property.
• Evening is free with dinner on your own with suggestions provided.

Day Six: Discover Costa Smeralda, Local Market and San Pantaleo Village

• Breakfast is served.
• Following breakfast, meet your driver for a trip to Costa Smeralda.  Visit the local market, San Pantaleo village, Archeo Site Nuraghe, Bronze Age unique in the Mediterranean Sea, and a panoramic tour of the Costa Smeralda, Cala di Volpe Bay, Porto Cervo, the Marina, Promenade du Port, and shopping area.  Museum tickets, such as Facoltative, are not included if you opt to enter.
• Following the excursion, return to the property.
• Evening is free with dinner on your own with suggestions provided.

Day Seven: Cooking Class 3

• Breakfast is served.
• Cooking class 3.  Tie on your apron for your Sardinian cooking class preparing a full-course Sardinian fare lunch with local wine included.  Following the cooking class, everyone enjoys the food that was prepared in the cooking class with local wine included.
• Take the afternoon to relax, enjoy artisan shopping or watch the world go round in any one of the outdoor caffes in Olbia.
• Evening is free with dinner on your own with suggestions provided.

Day Eight: Check-out & Arrivederci

• Breakfast is served.
• Check-out and transfer to Olbia airport or train station.

Program Includes:
  • 8 days, 7 nights in a charming accommodation.
  • Daily Breakfast and maid service.
  • • Welcome Dinner including our Chef’s Tasting Menu with an antipasto, fresh pasta and sauce, main course and dessert of Sardinian fare with local wine and liqueur included.
  • 3 hands-on cooking classes with lunch or dinner to follow including the food that was prepared in the cooking class with wine included.
  • Shop with the Chef experience at the local outdoor farmer’s market, prior to one of the cooking classes.
  • Excursion to an award-winning winery with wine tour and tastings of traditional finger foods and artisan cheese and visit to San Pantaleo.
  • Excursion to Costa Smeralda with driver included with stops along the way.
  • Excursion to the Blue Zone including Gallura and Orgosolo with driver including lunch with the Shepherds.
  • Excursion to Barbagia with driver with stops along the way.
  • Round-trip transfers to Olbia airport and train station.
  • Cooking Vacations Welcome Bag with chef’s apron, Prosecco and recipe booklet.
  • A copy of Lauren’s cookbook, “It’s A Dream Place – Stories & Recipes of Food, Love and the Amalfi Coast.”
Program Prices

$4,695 per person, based on 2 guests.

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.  Prices may vary depending on room upgrades and special fairs or holidays.

Check Availability

2024 Dates: This program is available throughout the year and cooking classes are held every day. 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.