Culinary Journey to Venice and the Veneto, Italy
$5,800 pp** | May 21-27, 2018
This region of Italy is truly a gem and it holds a very special place in my heart. Stretching from the Dolomites to the Adriatic Sea, this area is home to elegant towns, rolling landscape, delicious cuisine, incredible wines, and no doubt the most unique city in the world, enchanting Venice!
We'll stay at Serego Alghieri’s La Foresteria, an unparalleled family villa/estate turned resort, and immerse ourselves in the beautiful Valpolicello countryside. After gathering together in the villa for a welcome spritz cocktail (after all, the spritz was invented here) and dinner, we'll rest up in our lovely apartments before heading out to immerse ourselves in the richness this area has to offer. We'll kick things off with a tour of my friend Gabriele Ferron’s pre-war water-powered rice farm called a riseria, followed by a risotto-making lesson and lunch. Then we'll wander the cobblestone streets and narrow passageways in the medieval city of Verona.
Oh, and the wine? We won't have to travel far to get to the vineyards, such as the delicious Amarone wines from our very own Masi Estate! We’ll have lunch at the villa of film producer and winemaker, Carlo Nerozzi, who makes the best Custoza white wine and also visit my dear friend Chiara at Coffele wine for an exclusive Soave Superiore tasting. The options are endless!
We'll explore picturesque areas, like the village of Sirmione on Lake Garda. And of course a trip here, wouldn’t be complete without a day at my favorite city on earth, - Venice!! Imagine going up the Grand Canal in our own water taxi, wandering the streets, visiting the outdoor Rialto market, lunch in a few of the special Venetian “tapas bars” called bacaro to taste the little specialty bites that only Venice has to offer.
You will absolutely love this unforgettable culinary adventure in the beautiful Veneto region of Northeastern Italy.
** Price based on double occupancy. Airfare not included. Deposit of $1500.00 per person required to secure a spot. Limited single occupancy rooms available.
Venice and the Veneto, Italy Cooking Classes
The cuisine in the Veneto varies from area to area with incredible local ingredients at our fingertips, this is the perfect place to inspire anyone who loves food. Our week will include several hands-on cooking classes in the kitchen of our gorgeous estate, one of my favorites. I’ve been teaching here for nearly 29 years and know this area like the back of my hand.
With a focus on the specialties of the region, we'll make dishes such as Risotto with Amarone, Shellfish Salad with Salsa Verde, Tiramisu, and almond and polenta cookies called "Sbrisolona". And of course we’’ taste lots of fabulous wines and have a spritz every now and then.
We'll stay at the villa of my friend, Count Serego Alghieri, a direct descendant of Dante. There’s lots of history here. This unparalleled family-estate-turned-resort is very special to me. This is the first location where I taught 20 years ago and it’s still one of my absolute favorites. You’ll see!!! As we travel up the long cypress-lined drive that leads up to the villa, your senses will instantly come alive. With some of the oldest grapevines in Italy, the estate is completely surrounded by gorgeous vineyards, rosemary and lemon verbena bushes, stone sculptures, cherry, lemon and olive trees. La Foresteria is one of my most elegant locations and it's no wonder students return again and again to this location every time it's offered.
The estate has a large professional kitchen where we'll hold our hands-on cooking classes and make use of estate-produced wine, jam, honey, grappa, olive oil, balsamic vinegar, and rice in our cooking.
** Price based on double occupancy, single supplement applies for solo travelers. Airfare not included. Deposit of $1500.00 per person required to secure a spot.
Italy Day Trips
To really understand one of the most important products from the Veneto, rice, we'll take an excursion to a rice producer. Here, we will taste a variety of risottos and learn the tricks of how to make the perfect risotto at home. We'll visit the villa of Carlo Nirozzi, filmmaker, and wine maker, and have lunch al fresco looking out over the vineyards and Veneto hills beyond. We’ll visit a favorite restaurant of mine and see the cooks as they form winter squash tortelli. They may even let us give it a try.
A trip to the Veneto wouldn't be complete without a full day in Venice exploring the legendary Rialto fish market, sampling Venetian tapas at a few Venetian baccaro, and sipping prosecco. We’ll have an afternoon to wander the streets, do some shopping or simply find a chair at a café in San Marco Square to watch the people. Before we leave Venice, we'll have a special farewell drink and dinner at one of my favorite spots and take a private water taxi back to meet our coach for the drive back to our villa. On another day, we'll journey to the delightful market town of Soave to taste Soave Classico with my dear friend, Chiara, and the medieval city of Verona, where the legend of Romeo and Juliet's love began.
Italy Trip Details
Group meeting point in Verona for pick-up and drop-off is: Verona Porta Nuova train station. The group will meet in the late afternoon on the first day of the journey at the Porto Nuova tran station and be transported to the villa for check in and welcome drinks and dinner. The tour concludes after breakfast on the final day of the journey and transfer back to the Verona train station. Private transfers can be arranged at an additional cost.
The closest International airport to your villa is Verona (VRN). We suggest arriving in Italy at least one day in advance of this tour. Not only does this give you some time to adjust to the time difference, it provides you with more time to explore. We highly recommend purchasing trip insurance.
A non-refundable deposit of $1500.00 US per person is required to register for this journey. See the Terms and Conditions page for policy details. Single supplement charge applies for solo travelers. Accommodations, cooking classes, excursions and day trips, wine and tastings and meals (with the exclusion of one or two) are included. Airfare is not included in the package price. Final payments are made by personal check or money order.