As soon as Michael got a taste of Mamma Pina's tuna-stuffed peppers a few years ago, he had to have the recipe. Jeff shared it with him, and ever since, the two chefs have deepened their bond. We love the way Michael creates vibrant, ingredient-forward dishes, and his cooking is the perfect match for opulent Piemontese foods like truffles, cheeses, hazelnuts, and wine!
Meet Giorgio Rivetti for a private tour of Italy's first sparkling wine cellar, then taste his outstanding brut, barbera and Barbaresco wines in a hands-on cooking class with his sister Giovanna
Join a truffle hunt to see how our trifulau Natale finds these hidden gems, then taste fresh truffles while learning about the history of the prized tubers in a truffle museum
We will get to experience the world's biggest cheese festival on the street of the city of Bra, the headquarter of Slow Food. A celebration of biodiversity of cheeses from Italy and beyond
Villa d'Amelia has the most stunning view of the Langhe winemaking region along with a spa, bar, and an awarded restaurant in a renovated 19th-century farmhouse
The traditional stuffed pasta of Piemonte is called "plin" (pinched) and it's fun to make, especially in the kitchen of one of Italy's oldest wineries
For five generations, the Craveros have been selecting and aging the very best Parmigiano Reggiano and Grana Padano... You'll be in awe of their 20-foot-tall caves and of their cheese of course!
Admire the spectacular vistas as you ride through a landscape of centuries-old vineyards and ancient castles!
This morning, Jeff and Michael welcome you at the Milano Malpensa Airport and together we head to Piemonte! We stop in the village of Barbaresco for a gourmet and restoring lunch before we reach our villa! As soon as we arrive in the heart of the Langhe winegrowing region, we settle into our rooms at the gorgeous Villa D’Amelia and have some free time to relax and explore. You may not want to leave the villa at all: the view of the Alps, hazelnut groves, and rolling Piemonte vineyards are absolutely breathtaking! Villa D'Amelia has an awarded restaurant, a spa, gardens, and plenty of lounges where we sip aperitivo at sunset. That is exactly what we do tonight before heading to dinner for a special Piemontese tasting menu by three brothers that, after traveling the world, returned to their roots to add flair to the traditional recipes.
Do you love to cook? So do we! Today we enjoy a lazy morning before we join our chefs Jeff Michaud and Michael Scelfo for a hand- on cooking class at a winery in La Morra where we dive into some of the most iconic dishes of the region paired with Barolo, Barbaresco and Arneis wines. After savoring our preparations, we return to our Relais to enjoy a relaxing afternoon. That evening we gather to dine at the table of Elena and Marco in Monforte d'Alba. Their solid cooking and precise aromas and flavors speak of the high-quality ingredients they meticulously source in the Langhe region... Think capon with chestnuts, farm-raised pork sausage with raschera cheese fondue, capunet and chocolate bonet...
After breakfast, we visit the hazelnut groves of Noe' and Marina, artisanal producers of Nocciola Gentile , one of the world-renowned excellence of Piemonte. We adventure in some unexpected hazelnut pairing before we luxuriate in a fantastic Italian aperitivo back at Villa d'Amelia. For five generations, the Cravero Family has been aging the finest DOP Parmigiano Reggiano money can buy. This afternoon, master affineur (cheesemaker) Giorgio Cravero gives us a private tasting and tour of his 20-foot-high cheese caves in the mountain town of Bra, the seat of the Slow Food movement. What goes best with cheese? Wine! Let's reach the Roero wine region for a visit to the Damonte Family's winery and taste their excellent Malvira' wines in a tasting menu at their restaurant Villa Tiboldi featuring courses like freshly homemade tajarin with truffles and Fassona beef tartare with Castelmagno cheese fondue... So decadent!
It's truffle time - let's go hunting! These buried treasures are notoriously hard to find, but Natale and his stout-nosed dog guide us as we search the forests of Costigliole D’Asti in the Monferrato region.
Beverage alert: we found the most lively wine bar in Alba. It sits right beside a beautiful cathedral in town, and after some drinks and appetizers in the square, we enjoy a guided tour of Alba, the historic medieval "city of hundred towers". You have free time to explore the markets and shops and then a little more free time back at the villa to relax. Dinner tonight is a special treat: a meal with Cesare Giaccone is like no other. He is a Piemonte legend. A chef's chef. Yet a humble man. And an extraordinary cook. Savor this meal cooked for you by one of Italy's most celebrated chefs who has inspired countless others throughout Italy, America, and beyond.
Founded in 1867, Contratto Winery is now a UNESCO World Heritage Site. This morning, Giorgio Rivetti (known as "the rhino"), owner of both La Spinetta and Contratto wineries, gives us an inside view of the winery's cathedral cellars located in Canelli. We hear more about the winemaking tradition of Piemonte and how the Rivetti Family is re-interpreting the indigenous grapes into some of the most prized wines in the world! Then we move into the winery kitchen for a cooking class with Giorgio's sister, Giovanna, along with our chefs Jeff and Michael. You learn to master the most famous Piemontese recipes like bagna cauda, ravioli del plin and vitello tonnato and pair them with an extravaganza of amazing creations of Barolo, Barbaresco and Barbera wines! Now it is time to lounge back at the villa before we get ready for our memorable Michelin star experience where we dine enjoying the astounding view over the vineyards, towards the Alps.
Who wants to ride a Vespa? This morning let's zip down to the charming village of Barolo in style. We are going to visit Chiara Boschis, the most famous female winemaker in Piemonte and star of the Barolo Boys movie. She took a daring and provocative path, employing green harvesting, shorter fermentation, and the use of small barriques. A pioneer and rebel winegrower, Chiara is treating us to a private tour and tasting at her winery. Can't wait! Then we swing into town for a light al fresco lunch at a local favorite spot before riding through the vineyards back to our villa. The rest of the afternoon is all to yourself, so today's a good day to book that spa treatment or taking a hot air balloon ride over the vineyards. For our last evening, we stay "home" and let the expert hands of starred chef Damiano Nigro weave Piemontese ingredients with flavors inspired by the Mediterranean tradition, in a delicious union between North and South, sea and hills. Buon appetito!
Enjoy our final breakfast, take in the rolling vineyards of the Langhe, and gaze upon the snow-capped Alps before we say goodbye to Piemonte ... until next time.
$6750per person based on double occupancy
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What does the price include?
Six nights luxury accommodation in double occupancy at the Relais Villa D’Amelia; private driver for all trips and excursions in itinerary; arrival and departure airport group transfer; private tours with local guides and cultural experts; exclusive VIP access and tastings; guided activities; entrance fees; daily breakfasts, lunches and dinners with wine; gratuities for local staff.
What does the price not include?
International roundtrip airfare; travel insurance; transportation to the trip’s starting point; activities not included in the trip itinerary; hotel incidentals including room service, laundry service, and hotel bar tabs; food and beverages not included in the itinerary.
What are the arrival & departure details?
We recommend that you arrive at the Milano Malpensa Airport (MXP) in Milan, on or before Sunday, September 19, 2021. We’ll meet as a group between 9 and 10 am at the Airport. The last day of our culinary trip is September 25, 2021. You should schedule flights home after 11 am from the Milan Malpensa Airport (MXP).
Who is going on this trip?
We limit the group to no more than 14 travelers, your host Jeff Michaud, and our guest chef Michael Scelfo. In this culinary trip, you can expect to be joined by a diverse group of like-minded people who share your passion for the food, wine, and traditions of Italy – including solo travelers, couples and friends traveling together. This trip is recommended for travelers aged 18 and above.
Who is leading this trip?
This trip is led by our founder, Chef Jeff Michaud. He traveled extensively through Piemonte and the person who crafted your itinerary for the week. Our special guest will be our friend, Michael Scelfo, chef, and owner of three acclaimed restaurants in Boston. We’ll be joined throughout our adventure by local, expert guides who are deeply knowledgeable with respect to local cultures, customs and history and are passionate about sharing that with us.
What is the cancellation policy?
You may cancel on or before May 22nd, 2021 and receive a full refund minus a $500 per person service fee. If you cancel on or after May 23rd, 2021 there is a 50% cancellation fee. On or after July 21st, 2021, there is a 100% cancellation fee. We highly recommend purchasing travel insurance as we are not able to make exceptions to this policy in cases of family/medical emergency or cases of the trip being canceled (See our Terms and Conditions for full details).
What travel documents are needed?
U.S. citizens are not required to have a visa for tourist visits to Italy but are required to show a valid US passport. It is recommended that your passport is valid for six months after your travels are over.
Do I need to pay a solo traveler supplement?
Yes, there is a $950 supplement for solo travelers, to be paid at the time of booking to secure a private room. Single spots are limited and available on a first-come, first-served basis. (See our Terms and Conditions for full details).
Can this itinerary be booked for a private group?
Of course! We can customize this trip and itinerary at a time that is most convenient for you and your friends. The minimum number of participants for a private trip is 8. For more information contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Still have questions?
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