Verona, Italy - 6 nights
Available May and September - Sunday to Saturday
Experience a culinary adventure of a lifetime! Join Giuliano Hazan and Marilisa Allegrini (one of Italy's most distinguished producers of noble red wine) for a week of total immersion in Italian food, wine, and life. You will stay at an incredible villa, Renaissance Villa della Torre, near romantic Verona, the city of Romeo and Juliet. It is here that the cooking classes take place and from where you will set off for exciting excursions, including a visit to a market, a winery, a traditional rice farm and a cheese and culatello production facility.
Giuliano Hazan and his wife Lael will be your hosts for the week's activities. Giuliano, like many other good cooks, learned his craft from his mother. The mother in this instance is the late Marcella Hazan. He is now the author of five cookbooks including The Classic Pasta Cookbook, an international bestseller with half a million copies in print in 16 countries and a James Beard award nominee and Every Night Italian which won the World Cookbook award for best Italian cookbook in the English language. It received rave reviews including one from The New York Times which said the book "epitomizes authenticity... this food is genius -- genius distilled from history." Giuliano's experience began at age 17 as he worked his way up from assistant to teacher and director at Marcella Hazan's renowned School of Classic Italian Cooking in Bologna. He has over 30 years of teaching experience and makes regular appearances at cooking schools across the U.S. and abroad. For 4 years he taught a widely attended course in Venice at the legendary Hotel Cipriani. In 2007 the International Association of Culinary Professionals named him Cooking Teacher of the Year.
Marilisa Allegrini is her family's ambassador at large. She regularly presents the wines of her native Valpolicella, and introduces audiences to the terroir from which they spring at stellar events throughout the United States and Europe. You may already be one of the many happy wine drinkers that have been enjoying the richness, the deep layers of flavor of Amarone. If you are not, you'll have the opportunity at Villa della Torre to make up for lost time. Allegrini is one of the paramount producers of this precious wine as well as several other extraordinary wines which regularly receive top ratings in The Wine Advocate and The Wine Spectator. Allegrini's Amarone, La Poja, and Recioto Giovanni Allegrini have all been recipients of Italy's prestigious "Tre Bicchieri" award. You will be the beneficiary of a behind the scenes winery tour -- not available to the general public -- guided by Marilisa Allegrini.
A limited number of students will participate in a week of intensive hands-on classes taught by Giuliano Hazan. We will make homemade pasta, risotto, meats, local fish, vegetables, and desserts. Each 5-hour class concludes with dinner in classic style composed of the several courses prepared during the class. Each class will also include presentations by Marilisa Allegrini on the major wine producing regions of Italy. The wines discussed, both from the Allegrini vineyards and other distinguished Italian producers, will accompany the meals. All instruction is given in English.
The Veneto region is a portion of what was once the 1,000-year Venetian Republic, one of the glories of the Western World, birthplace of some of its greatest art, music, and architecture. It also offers extraordinary culinary treasures. During the day we will take field trips to learn more about these treasures. We will visit a rice mill where rice for risotto continues to be processed the way it was in 1648. We shall travel to medieval Sirmione on the southern shore of Lake Garda to experience a seafood cookery that epitomizes the exquisite, light-handed traditions of the lake. The olive oil from the Veneto is perhaps Italy's most elegant and we will visit a frantoio where it is made. We will also spend a day outside the Veneto to witness the making of Parmigiano-Reggiano and to taste the rare culatello, an air-cured ham that is even more prized than prosciutto.
DAY ONE - SUNDAY
7:15 PM – Get-acquainted and welcome reception in the lobby of Villa della Torre.
Dinner will be at one of Marilisa Allegrini's favorite restaurants in the Valpolicella region.
DAY TWO - MONDAY
9:45 AM -- Meet in the lobby for a tour of the Allegrini vineyards. You will learn how Amarone is made and visit the winery.
We will have lunch at the historic Villa della Torre and savor the specialties of the Allegrini family.
5:00 PM --Lesson #1. Meet in the lobby of the Villa.
DAY THREE - TUESDAY
8:30 AM -- Departure for Padova. Tour of the food market in Piazza Erbe, in the heart of the city. This is one of the region's most colorful and abundant fruit and vegetable markets.
Lunch will be in Verona, a small gem of a restaurant in the heart of the city featuring typical Veronese cuisine.
6:00 PM -- Lesson #2.
DAY FOUR - WEDNESDAY
9:15 AM -- Departure from the Villa to visit a traditional rice mill, in operation since 1648. Here you will see how rice for risotto is processed both with modern equipment and with the original mortar and pestle system.
We will then go into Verona where we will have a guided tour of the city. Lunch is on your own.
4:00 PM -- Lesson #3.
DAY FIVE - THURSDAY
7:45 AM!! -- Today we will leave the Veneto to go to the region where Parmigiano-Reggiano is made. Parmigiano-Reggiano is considered one of the world's great table cheeses. We will visit one of the many caseifici where it is made and aged. We will then proceed to the banks of the Po river to see the production of culatello, a cured ham that is rarer and more precious than prosciutto and we will sample the traditional dishes of the region.
We return to the Villa late in the afternoon and the evening is free.
DAY SIX - FRIDAY
9:15 AM -- Departure from the Villa to visit a frantoio, an olive press of the area. We will learn how olive oil is made and what makes it "extra virgin".
Afterwards we will drive to Sirmione, a jewel of a town on the Lake of Garda. Lunch will be at one of the finest restaurants on the lake.
6:00 PM -- Lesson #4 with distribution of diplomas to the deserving.
DAY SEVEN - SATURDAY
Check-out and departure.
HOW TO ARRIVE
Closest Airports/Train Station:
Verona Airport (VRN) - 10-12km. away - 20 minutes
Verona Train Station - 8-10km - 20 minutes
Other airports are Venice (VCE) - 100km - 1 1/2 to 2 hours, depending on traffic
Milan's Malpensa (MXP) - 150km - 2 hours away (but traffic can turn it into 3 hours).
*These details are provided as additional information. Please check below to see if transfers are included in this tour.
After availability is confirmed, a US$1500 deposit for each person (US$500 of which is a non-refundable registration fee). The balance is due no later than 75 days prior to the beginning of the course. Please note that accommodations for special food needs may not be possible.
*Four (4) 5-hour hands-on classes and dinners
*Seminars covering Italy's main wine producing regions
*Six (6) nights' deluxe accommodations in the Villa, including breakfast
*All field trips, with transportation in a deluxe chartered bus
*Five (5) restaurant meals outside of class
The fee for a companion who does not wish to attend the classes includes everything except the classes.
For further inquiries or to register, click here.
Please contact us for cancellation policy information. Travel insurance is highly recommended.
L. Perakis, Palo Alto, California
"The field trips were all memorable. ...even the 'locals' don't have the opportunity to visit the types of places we visited. Very, very special."
"I feel as if I have a whole new understanding of Italy and its food and wine."
E. Grey, Boston, Massachusetts
"I find myself at 6 a.m. deboning chicken and making fillets, peeling peppers, and making cutlets at 11:00 in the evening. Again, this is not the me I have known all these years. Thank you for my new epicurean interests."
S. Martin, Washington, D.C.
"The Villa is spectacular, and one can imagine checking in and never leaving."
S. Schleifer, Scottsdale, Arizona
"Our room, view, and breakfast were wonderful... Marilisa charmingly taught us so much about wine... Every day was special, exciting, and delicious... The day trips were so educational. Lunches were delicious – we couldn't pick our favorite lunch because they were all so good... We learned so much in class. You gave us so much information... We wouldn't have changed a thing. You thought of everything, right down to the most minute detail."
Lourdes P., Miami, Florida
"It was great! Chef Giuliano is wonderful and so was his wife. The best part was having Marilisa Allegrini (world class lady) from Allegrini wines with us all the time. She is a trip! Also we sampled 5 wines at lunch and at dinner from different regions of Italy each day. The food was out of control as were the field trips! The place we stayed was "incomparable" to anywhere in the world. It was truly a GREAT vacation!"
D. and E. Wright, Seattle, Washington
"We couldn't have imagined a honeymoon more perfect than this!"
This exciting region is depicted below. You can also access Google MapsTM by clicking HERE.
*In some cases mapping may give clients a general sense of location due to changes in venue. Please inquire about specific location.