Cooking with Michele in Italy

Experience the food, wine, and gorgeous scenery of the hill towns of Tuscany and Umbria in Italy
October 2015

Click here to reserve your spot today!

I’ve been taking clients on trips to Italy for years (click here for information about my annual trip to Rome and Puglia), and am pleased to now offer a special trip to the hill towns of Tuscany and Umbria. This special food and wine trip will be limited to a small group of guests, so sign up quickly if you think you’d like to go!1 romeWe’ll fly in to Rome to begin our journey, and for anyone who hasn’t been to Rome before, you can extend your journey on the front end to spend a few days in Rome. While I won’t be with you there, I will arrange hotel rooms, tour guides, and anything else you need help with.italy collage casperiaWe’ll gather in Casperia, a small hill town just north and east of Rome on the edge of Umbria to begin our adventure. We’ll stay at a lovely restored palazzo in this tiny, pedestrian only village and we’ll be here for four nights.siena collageThen we’ll head to Siena, centrally located in Tuscany with easy access to the Chianti wine region. Our hotel is set just a 3 minute walk from the center piazza in Siena, and includes a garden with views of the sunset and the Tuscan countryside in the back.italy collage cooking schoolsDuring the week we’ll have three different cooking classes: one at La Torretta in Casperia, another a Gusto al Borgo in Casperia, and a third one outside of Siena.italy collage wine and paintingWe will also have two full day outings: one to tour the Chianti Classico wine region with lunch at an incredible hilltop restaurant set in the heart of the region, and a second day of introduction to Tuscan landscape painting near Buonconvento with a lunch and Brunello wine tasting to follow. Other highlights of the week include a tour in Siena; a day trip to Orvieto for shopping, lunch, wine tasting, and a tour; and more great food and wine than you can possibly imagine!1You’ll ride in comfort during the trip in a full size van with room enough for everyone’s luggage (more on how to pack light will follow for guests who sign up!). Guests will depart from Florence to return home, and anyone wishing to extend their stay in Florence may do so.

Itinerary (8 full days and nights in Italy, 2 travel days)
Travel to Rome

Arrive in Rome
Transfer to Casperia (by train or private car)
Lunch at Friend’s Cafe
Open afternoon to recover from jet lag
Optional hiking in the afternoon
Late afternoon aperitivo on the terrace at La Torretta
Welcome dinner to follow at La Torretta

Breakfast at La Torretta
Outing to Poggio Mirteto (coffee, shopping, and light lunch)
Stop at panoramic village for scenery and gelato
Afternoon cooking lesson at Gusto al Borgo followed by dinner

Breakfast at La Torretta
Group van to Orvieto mid morning
Shopping, wine tasting, lunch, and tour in Orvieto
Olive oil and wine tasting with light snacks in the evening

Breakfast at La Torretta
Morning open / casual lunch in Casperia
Afternoon cooking lesson at La Torretta followed by dinner

Breakfast at La Torretta
Transfer to Siena mid-morning
Lunch – pizza in the Piazza del Campo
Afternoon guided tour in Siena
Dinner together at La Taverna di San Giuseppe

Breakfast at the hotel
Wine Tasting and Tour at Castello della Paneretta
Lunch at Le Contrade in Gaiole
Tour and Wine Tasting at Castello di Meleto in Gaiole
Light and casual dinner in Siena

Breakfast at the hotel
Early morning departure for Buonconvento
Three hour introduction to Tuscan landscape painting at a wine estate
Lunch in Buonconvento in the artists’ home with Brunello tasting
Shopping in Buonconventro
Dinner at Osteria Le Logge

Breakfast at the hotel
Cooking lesson at Ecco La Cucina
Late afternoon free for final shopping
Farewell dinner at Boccon del Prete

DAY 10
Breakfast at the hotel
Early transport to Florence airport for flights home or optional extended time on your own in Florence

Estimated Trip Cost* $4,500

  • Eight nights hotel rooms – 4 nights in Casperia and 4 nights in Siena, single occupancy*
  • All meals including wine or other beverages
  • Transportation during the week
  • Three cooking lessons with meals and recipes included
  • Tuscan landscape painting class with lunch and wine tasting
  • Full day of Chianti wine touring with lunch
  • Guided tours in Siena and Orvieto
  • Transfer from Siena to the airport in Florence.

Not included:

  • Airfare is not included, but many guests use miles for free flights. I am happy to provide assistance booking flights or advising how to use miles.
  • Transportation from the airport in Rome to Casperia is not included, but you will be given details on the various options for arriving in Casperia.
  • Incidentals billed to your hotel rooms are not covered.

Reserve your spot today!

*Trip Cost is based on hotel rates and exchange rates at the time of this posting; if rates change significantly, the price may change. To hold your spot in the trip and to lock in the price, a deposit of $2,500 must be paid. The final $2,000 will be billed 90 days prior to the trip. It is highly advised that you obtain private travel insurance if you have any concerns about canceling as all fees are nonrefundable. If you are traveling with a friend or spouse and wish to share a room, please contact me about pricing.