Join Anna Maria in her family’s historic mansion for a unique cooking experience blending Tuscan and Emilia-Romagna traditions in the village of Marradi. Luxury accommodations accompany delicious cooking, and local wines from Tuscany and Emilia-Romagna complete this colorful palate. Our weekend program gives you a taste of Marradi’s local flavor along with time on your own to enjoy the blend of tranquility and excitement that sets apart the Italian lifestyle, la dolce vita.
Both Tuscany and Emilia Romagna have strong culinary traditions and this program offers a unique opportunity to taste the best of both worlds. Tuscany’s cuisine is traditionally simple and tasty and very much based on the seasons, with fresh vegetables, meat and game all a strong presence on the Tuscan table. Over the centuries Tuscans have become magicians at transforming a handful of simple ingredients into a feast, from pappa al pomodoro and handmade pici pasta with a slow-braised sauce to mouthwatering Florentine steaks and crisp cantucci cookies to end on a sweet note.
Emilia Romagna, on the other hand, provides Italy with some of its best known and best loved products. Think of Parmigiano-Reggiano Cheese, sweet aged balsamic vinegar, Parma ham and tortellini, all of which hail from this region. On the subject of pasta, the women of this region are famous for being masters of fresh pasta making, and watching a bowl of flour and a few eggs metamorphose before your eyes into a sleek, paper thin, sheet of yellow pasta is a real treat. The filling for tortellini tends to be a mixture of ground pork and veal, whereas tortelloni and ravioli can be stuffed with ricotta and spinach, pumpkin with crumbled amaretti, and a variety of other seasonal vegetables. Anna Maria will open her family recipe book and share her mother and nonna’s recipes with you so you will be able to recreate the traditions of these two regions back in your home kitchen for family and friends.
Anna Maria leads you in hands-on cooking classes from appetizers to dessert, and shares her family recipes with you. Her philosophy is to use the ingredients of the season, simply and cooked just right, to bring out every flavor. Roll up your sleeves and learn hands-on as Anna Maria guides you with interesting tips and tricks along the way. Discover the area’s delicious crostini, which are perfect to serve with a glass of foamy lambrusco while guests chat and relax. Watch as your chef kneads and rolls exquisite handmade pasta and try for yourself, following her precious tips and advice. Learn more about the area’s main courses, from peppery beef stews and slow-stewed rabbit to dainty vegetable timbales to accompany. Sweets include cantucci to dip in vin santo, la torta della nonna, or castagnaccio when chestnuts are in season. Each cooking course ends with the tasting lunch or dinner on the foods prepared in class along with regional wines.
Because of Marradi’s location, in Tuscany just outside Emilia-Romagna, its culinary tradition reflects that of both regions and unique in its own recipes. In the fall, cook with chestnuts and take advantage of the special Chestnut menu. Choose the dessert menu to learn Anna Maria’s secrets of baking and pastry making. There are endless menus that you might prepare, to give you an idea, here are a few classes to choose from, and custom courses are available upon request.
Typical Tuscany Regional Cuisine
Typical Emilia-Romagna Regional Cuisine
Cakes and Biscuits
Pizza, Piadina Bread & Salt Cakes
All menus vary to use the best ingredients of the season, and can be tailored to accommodate food allergies and/or diet needs. Vegetarian cooking class menus available, too.
Marradi is a riverside village tucked in the Lamone valley near Faenza in Tuscany, though just a short distance from Emilia-Romagna. This rural village nests quietly below cirrus-dusted mountains and has a landscape that has inspired artists and poets for centuries. Perfect for a hidden relaxing holiday yet within a short distance of the cities of Florence, Bologna, the seaside of Rimini and the incredible art of Ravenna.
Excursions take you to Ravenna with its incredible Byzantine churches and towns of Faenza, famous for ceramics, Pomposa with its frescoed Benedictine Abbey, Comacchio, a Venice-like lagoon town split by a network of canals and 17 bridges, Cervia, a seaside resort famous for its salt production, and Ferrara, with its Renaissance Estense castle.
Anna Maria’s family has lived in this historic mansion near Faenza for centuries. Recently restored and converted to a private B&B residence, it is made up of four suites: a double suite, a deluxe double and two luxury suites, all furnished with period furniture and featuring TV, private bathrooms and hair dryers in each room. The luxury suites offer a separate living area with fireplaces, full kitchen and air conditioning throughout.
A buffet breakfast is served each morning, giving you the opportunity to savor fresh cheese and yogurt, homemade jams, local cured meats and warm fresh-baked cakes.
Program is 3 days, 2 nights
This program is available 12 months per year. You can check in and start your program on any day of the week.
Day One: Arrival and Welcome
• Arrival and check in to the Palazzo.
• Meet your hosts, Welcome Cocktail and relax.
• Dinner on your own or ask about reserving dinner in one of the main halls of the Palazzo, decorated with frescoes and artwork by Galileo Chini.
Day Two: Cooking Class
• Breakfast is served.
• After breakfast spend the day in the village of Marradi, famed for its historical and artistic traditions and its rural civilization, which extends along the picturesque, verdant Lamone Valley. Breathe in the atmosphere and stroll through the sites that inspired Dino Campana, Marradi’s great poet.
• Take time for lunch on your own.
• In the afternoon, meet for your first hands-on Cooking Class featuring local ingredients and traditional recipes.
• Dinner follows on the foods prepared in class, accompanied by local wines.
Day Three: Departure & Arrivederci!
• Breakfast is served.
• Departure. Ciao e a presto!
- 3 days, 2 nights in luxury Palazzo double room, based on double occupancy.
- Daily breakfast.
- Welcome Cocktail upon arrival.
- 1 cooking class with lunch or dinner following, local wines included.
$750 per person, based on double occupancy in Junior Suite. All taxes and Italian VAT included.
$100 supplement per person per program for upgrade to Suite.
$1,150 per person, based on single occupancy in Junior Suite. All taxes and Italian VAT included.
$200 supplement per program for upgrade to Suite.
*An Italian visitor tax may apply in some cities and must be paid directly on site at check out.