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New Italian Cooking Schools

Cooking schools in the Italian regions of Campania, Le Marche, Tuscany and Umbria.

Campania

Don Alfonso 1890

© Philippe Schaff

Don Alfonso 1890

Next to the hotel and his Michelin-two-star restaurant, chef Alfonso Iaccarino built a kitchen where he and his staff teach students how to make the dishes from his menus in one-, three- and six-day classes.

Le Marche

La Tavola Marche

© Ashley Bartner

La Tavola Marche

An American expat couple—the husband trained with Jacques Pépin—turned a stone farmhouse into an agriturismo. Students make pizza in a wood-fired oven.

Tuscany

Castel Monastero

Courtesy of Castel Monastero

Castel Monastero

British celebrity chef Gordon Ramsay oversees the culinary program at this new hotel, where he also has a restaurant.

Montecastelli

© Jens Schmidt

Montecastelli

Guest chefs, like Marco Canora, teach both groups and individuals at this villa and farm outside Siena. Four apartments are available to rent on-site.

Castello di Volpaia

Giovanna Stianti Mascheroni, owner of the top winery Castello di Volpaia, teaches cooking classes at her 900-acre estate near Siena. Three-hour classes emphasize classic Tuscan dishes like panzanella (bread-and-tomato salad). Classes are limited to 20 students and end with a tour of the wine cellars and a meal. The estate also offers accommodations in restored farmhouses.

Faith Willinger

Cookbook author Faith Willinger prepares an eight-course lunch for up to eight guests in her gorgeous Florentine kitchen. Between courses, Willinger demonstrates how to make dishes like a spring onion-and-beet salad, offers tips like the easiest way to clean artichokes and conducts vinegar and olive oil tastings. She often brings in visitors, like her favorite local butcher.

Il Falconiere

Second-generation Cortona chef Silvia Baracchi and her husband run this hotel, vinotherapy spa and cooking school. Classes focus on traditional Tuscan dishes like ribollita, a rustic bean soup. Three-hour lessons end with a tour of the adjoining winery and dinner at the hotel’s Michelin-starred restaurant. Three- and six-night cooking-school packages are also available.

Umbria

Ca’ Di Gosto

© David Nichols

Ca’ Di Gosto

A graduate of the Cordon Bleu in London and her filmmaker husband turned a 500-year-old farmhouse into a B&B. Most of the classes' ingredients come from local markets as well as its organic garden; the olive oil is pressed on site.

Cucina Della Terra

Courtesy of Cucina Della Terra

Cucina Della Terra

Founded by a teacher at New York City’s Institute of Culinary Education, this school teaches regional specialties such as farrotto (risotto made with farro instead of rice).

Palazzo Terranova

At this antiques-filled 10-suite hotel in Perugia, chef Patrizio Cesarini offers hotel guests cooking classes on topics like bread and pasta; wood-fired pizza and focaccia; and seasonal Umbrian dishes like polenta with wild boar or truffle-topped risotto. Most of the ingredients for both the classes and the restaurant come from the estate’s organic gardens. Special classes are organized around truffle season in October and November.

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Published September 2009
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