Join Fabrizio and his family at their estate, a beautiful farmhouse villa located in the heart of the Tuscan countryside. The Tuscan cooking classes, held in the villa’s private kitchen, feature traditional recipes from the region, including Florence with our Chef Paolo. He will lead you through making Tuscan antipasto, pasta, main course and dessert. Fabrizio’s energetic personality, along with Chef Paolo’s talented cooking skills make this cooking program our best seller for Tuscany. The entire staff, along with Fabrizio and his family, welcome you for a fun-filled cooking experience in the heart of Chianti!
Cooking Lessons & Excursion to Certaldo & Lucardo
Experience the delights of the traditional Tuscan lifestyle, while attending fun-filled cooking classes and enjoying relaxing excursions. You will learn to prepare Tuscan antipasto, pizza and breads, hearty soups, homemade pastas and sauces, meats, fish, vegetables and desserts.
Tagliatelle with porcini mushrooms and pepolino, wild thyme, artichokes and tomatoes stuffed with herbs and cheese, gnocchi with ragù, Chianti Etruscan sauce and beans all’uccelletto, Vin Santo & cantuccini, almond cookies, tiramisù, schiacciata con l’uva, Tuscan cake made with red grapes and rosemary, are just a sample of Fabrizio’s family recipes that you will learn. Recipes will vary depending on the seasons.
Each cooking class is hands-on and includes traditional Tuscan cuisine. The estate’s kitchen is located in the main villa in what used to be one of the family’s wine cellars.
You will learn the secrets of making gnocchetti verdi di patate con pomodorino fresco e basilico, green potato gnocchi with fresh tomatoes and basil, filetto d’orata al gratin di patate, fish with potato gratin or sea food risotto. Tuscan meats are prized in this region and Florentine steak and porcino mushrooms are on the menu if you like. semifreddo alle nocciole con cioccolato fondente, ice cream cake with dark chocolate and nuts. Following each cooking class, everyone enjoys the foods that were prepared together with wine from the estate.
Experience a visit to the vibrant marketplace as the scents of just baked bread, artisan cheese, and morning picked produce from the nearby rolling hills stir your senses. Listen to the sounds of sellers calling out their daily catch, prime cuts and specials. Shop along rows of passionate purveyors who have kept the old world way of protected food and wine.
During your stay, discover Certaldo!!! An excursion to this magical Tuscan town has you stepping along cobblestone paths lined with small coffee bars brewing up perfect espresso & cappuccino and fresh pasta shops displaying handmade pici, pappardelle and ravioli inside. Open doors of ancient churches welcome each guest in for ancient art, design and stained glass windows. Visit the home of great Italian writer Giovanni Boccaccio who penned Decameron and On Famous Women. Then, a stop in Lucardo beckons for small shops showcasing vino, faro, spelt and all things Tuscan.
The family has operated its vineyards, specialising in Chianti wine since the 19th century. The superior wine, also award-winning, are the best in the Chianti region. Fabrizio carries on the knowledge and know-how of growing and producing superior Tuscans on this estate. Tradition and old family customs merge with modern winemaking technologies, which yield production totals of nearly 30,000 bottles a year. The award-winning wine boasts the Silver Label, awarded at the Tuscan Gastronomic Show in New York City 2005 and 2006, and inclusion in the VIII edition of the Tuscan Wine Selection in 2008.
Tuscan Villa Accommodations
The private villa has recently been restored, respecting its old-world charm, while adding modern comforts. Set on a working vineyard, the property is surrounded by rolling green Tuscan hills in the heart of Chianti. The estate has endless fields of olive grove and an organic vegetable garden, which produces beautiful olives, tomatoes, eggplants, zucchini and a bounty of seasonal produce. Guests are invited to pick the fruits and vegetables, which are then used in the cooking classes.
The villa offers large apartments and oversized superior rooms, traditionally furnished and newly renovated with modern conveniences including air-conditioning. Each room has a private ensuite bathroom, telephone, full kitchenette, refrigerator, satellite TV and wifi, and a private garden or spacious terrace.
Step outside your door and into a lush garden with a caffé-style terrace for dining, reading or painting. There is an outdoor wood-burning brick oven for our pizza making class, an over-sized swimming pool and terrace on the property grounds. Majestic Murgesi horses are bred on the premises. If you like to ride, let us know and we will arrange for horseback riding.
Breakfast is served daily In the farmhouse’s spacious dining room and outdoor terrace where you will enjoy your Tuscan breakfast featuring artisan breads, salumi, ham, artisan cheese, homemade jams, biscotti and cakes baked each morning. Traditional Tuscan lunch or dinner is also available; reservations must be made in advance.
Family-style suites and apartments are also available upon request. Check in and start your program on any day of the week.
Itinerary ~ 4 Days and 3 Nights
Day 1: Check In
- Check in, relax. Welcome aperitivo and introduction.
- In the evening, a Welcome dinner at the property including a full course Chef’s Tasting Menu with Chianti wines produced by the property.
Day 2: Vineyard and Cantina Tour with Wine Tasting & Cooking Class 1
- Breakfast is served.
- Following breakfast, join Fabrizio for a visit to the family vineyard, olive grove and cantina. Walk the hills of the Chianti grape vineyard with Signor Fabrizio, an award- winning wine maker. He will explain the importance of the pure soil, cultivating techniques and history of the Chianti prized grapes, biodynamic farming, harvesting and bottling. Next everyone will walk under olive trees as he will explain the seasons, harvest and history of the ancient fruit first brought to Italy by the Greeks. At the end of the tour, a wine and olive oil tasting is included with his award-winning wines in the cantina and olive oil from the farm. Taste and enjoy limited edition wines and olive oils from the property.
- Take time for lunch. You may order lunch at the villa, not included in the tour.
- In the afternoon, meet in the kitchen for your cooking class 1. This hands-on experience, led by Chef Paolo teaches you classic Tuscan recipes using the freshest ingredients – grown on the property’s farm. The menu includes a first course, second course, contorno, side dish, and dessert. Dinner follows and everyone dines on the food that was prepared in the cooking class. Wine is included.
Day 3: Half-day excursion to Certaldo and Lucardo & Cooking Class 2
- Breakfast is served.
- Enjoy a half day excursion to the medieval towns of Certaldo, the hometown of Renaissance poet and author Giovanni Boccaccio, and Lucardo, touring the back roads of Tuscany. Step along cobblestone paths lined with small caffés serving perfect espresso & cappuccino along with fresh pasta shops filled with hand made pici, pappardelle and ravioli. Open doors of ancient churches welcome each guest in for beautiful art and the stained glass windows. Visit the home of great Italian writer Giovanni Boccaccio who penned Decameron and On Famous Women. A stop in Lucardo beckons for small shops showcasing vino, faro, spelt and all things Tuscan.
- Return to the Estate for a tour the property’s olive grove, vineyard and cantina. In the cantina, you will see the wine and how they are produced – Premium, Reserve, Vin Santo and Grappa. Discussion and tastings included with Fabrizio, our award-winning “Super Tuscan” wine producer and olive oil maker.
- Return to the kitchen for your cooking class 2. Dinner follows and everyone dines on the foods that were prepared in the class with Chianti wine included.
Day 4: Departure & Arrivederci!
- Breakfast is served.
- Departure, Ciao & a presto!
*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.
- 4 days, 3 nights. Click To View!
- Daily breakfast and daily maid service.
- Welcome Dinner with Chef’s Tasting full course menu featuring local fare with Chianti wine included.
- Two hands-on cooking classes preparing a full course menu featuring Tuscan fare followed by lunch or dinner with the property’s wine.
- Vineyard tour on the estate along with visit to the cantina with wine tasting featuring the property’s award-winning wine and olive oil.
- Half-day excursion touring countryside of Certaldo & Lucardo.
- Arrival and departure group transfers to and from Florence train station or airport.
- Cooking Vacations’ welcome bag with chef’s apron and recipe booklet.
$1,395 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.
2023 Dates: This program is available throughout the entire year. You can check in and start your cooking program any day of the week. 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.
Full Day Tour ~ Siena & San Gimignano
Discover Siena and San Gimignano, two exquisite towns in the heart of Tuscany. This private 7-hour excursion will take you through the Tuscan Hills, to visit Chianti and “la strada dei vini,” the street of wine country. Also included a visit to San Gimignano and Siena. You will be driven in a private car with our English-speaking driver who is very knowledgeable of the region’s story, places, best restaurants and local shopping destinations. Our driver will bring you to our favorite Tuscan trattoria (lunch and wine not included). This excursion is optional, and is an extra cost.
$995 for 1 to 3 guests with private driver.
Lunch and gratuities not included.