Italia

Food & Travel Experience

CASENTINO     POPPI     BIBBIENA     BORGO CORSIGNANO     SAN MINIATO     VALDARNO     CORTONA     FIRENZE     MERCATO CENTRALE      SIMONE FRACASSI                         

Italy through the eyes of a Chef

Cortona

Tuscany Casentino


















$2,995.00 per person airfare excluded             Leave USA on October 14th for overnight flight

Situated in Tuscany's east and bordered by the Apennines, the Province of Arezzo encompasses the areas of Casentino, Valdarno, Valtiberina and Val di Chiana. Each of these, comprising unique landscapes where natural beauty blends harmoniously with historic heritage and masterpieces of art.
The Casentino Valley is surrounded by high hills with ancient woods. Along the Tosco-Emiliano Apennine is the Casentino Forests, Monte Falterona and Campigna National Park, where among steep cliffs and thick vegetation two important spiritual locations are well worth a visit: the Sanctuary of La Verna and the Monastery of Camaldoli. The Valdarno Natural Reserve holds many surprises; its characteristic landscape is dominated by the spectacular Balze, yellow rock formations made of stratified clay, gravel and sand that rise up in diverse shapes.
The Val di Chiana landscape is a breathtaking succession of hills and valleys that are home to fine jewels of art, particularly Monte San Savino, Lucignano and Cortona. Situated near the border of Tuscany, the Valtiberina preserves an untouched environment otherwise sprinkled with castles, parish churches and historic villages such as Anghiari, Caprese Michelangelo and Sansepolcro. A number of spots are, as yet, unexplored, including the forests of the Pratomagno Range and numerous protected areas of local interest. The great Italian poet Petrarch was born in Arezzo, in addition to outstanding artists the likes of Piero della Francesca, Masaccio, Michelangelo, Luca Signorelli, Pietro da Cortona and Vasari. They all left signs of their creativity and genius in Arezzo and in other nearby towns. A blend of artistic itineraries, ranging from Piero della Francesca to the Della Robbia Family, offer a chance to admire the paintings, sculptures and architecture that make even the smallest hamlets of this region unique. Here, nature and a thousand years of man’s labor come together to create a millenary masterpiece that never ceases to astonish and enchant.

What we offer on your Italia Food & Travel Experiences in Tuscany:

You will be traveling, dining, wining, relaxing, having fun and lodging at the lovely  Borgo Corsignano  in the Casentino region  about 1 ½ hours west of Florence under the Apennines Mountains. You will be immersed into the true Tuscan lifestyle, landscape, cuisine and history. But above all you will also make friends for life. It’s the perfect way to have fun in a relaxing atmosphere in private surroundings and retreat.


PROGRAM

Day 1 Monday October 15
Arrival at Leonardo da Vinci (FCO) in Rome Italy. Departure toward Arezzo in Tuscany with approximate travel time of 3 hours. Lunch at Osteria da Giovanna. Afternoon departure toward Borgo Corsignano where you will be spending your leisure time in Tuscany. After a relaxing time period we will travel to Tirabuscio’ Ristorante in the center of historical Bibbiena. Dinner based on local specialties with wine. Return to Borgo Corsignano for the overnight stay. (Included in your price: lodging, travel, breakfast, lunch, dinner, tastings, wines, museums, master class presentations).

Day 2 Tuesday October 16
Our day is spent in the Casentino region. Continental breakfast at Borgo Corsignano. Departure toward the museum of the wool located in the Pratovecchio Stia, about 20 minutes away. After the visit of the museum we will stop and visit the Azienda Zuccari in the historical town of Poppi, to sample a great organic honey with the necessary accompaniments. During the lunch period we will visit Italy’s Best Butcher Simone Fracassi in the town of Rassina, where we will sample Tuscan meat protein, prepared in a street-food style, with demonstration and detailed information on the valuables Tuscan meats. In the afternoon, we will visit the agricultural setting of San Marco, where we will meet the world-renowned Chianina Beef. We will be briefed on the growing, diets and regulatory laws that govern this particular specimen. After the visit you will enjoy a guided tour of the famous Castello Conti Guidi in Poppi. The evening dinner will be at Antica Cantina in the historical center of Poppi. Evening return to Borgo Corsignano for the overnight stay.

(Included in your price: lodging, travel, breakfast, lunch, dinner, tastings, wines, museums, master class presentations).

Day 3 Wednesday October 17
We are going to Florence! Continental breakfast at Borgo Corsignano. Departure toward Florence with travel time of 1 hour and 45 minutes. The group will visit the historical center, followed by a must-stop at Florence Central Market. Walk around, enjoy some free time from us and a chance to immerse yourself into the Florentine life-style and culture. We will regroup and have lunch at Ristorante 4 Leoni in Piazza della Passera, a location where luminaries such as De Niro, Sting, Madonna, Dustin Hoffman and many more dine when in the city. After lunch we will depart toward the Casentino region. We will visit an old Mulino (Mill), where the grinding stones are still utilized to mill wheat. The stones to this day are activated by the waters of the Solano river. Since 1696 the Grifoni family transform wheat and chestnuts into premier delectable flours. Return to Borgo Corsignano for a well-deserved break, followed by dinner at Ristorante Falterona in Tanucci square in Pratovecchio Stia, about 20 minutes away from our main stay. After dinner return to Borgo Corsignano for the overnight stay. (Included in your price: lodging, travel, breakfast, lunch, dinner, tastings, wines, museums, master class presentations).
 

Day 4 Thursday October 18
Valdichiana Valley is the area of interest today, located south of the city of Arezzo. Continental breakfast at Borgo Corsignano. Today you will experience a truly unique experience with flour being the star performer. We will travel for about 1 hour, to meet the members of the Menchetti family, leaders in the natural leavening of bread, made with genuine, natural ingredients without additives. Here we will have a Master Class of what is called “The White Art”. Lunch follows prepared mastefully by the Menchetti group. We will then travel to the town most Americans love most....Cortona, the backdrop of the movie “Under the Tuscan sun”. We will spend time in Cortona, followed by a great wine tasting in Val di Chiana at winery Tenimenti d’Alessandro. Dinner in Cortona, followed by a return to Borgo Corsignano for the overnight stay.

(Included in your price: lodging, travel, breakfast, lunch, dinner, tastings, wines, museums, master class presentations).

Day 5 Friday October 19
Today we will go to the area of San Miniato. Continental breakfast at Borgo Corsignano, followed by a truly special gift: “Truffle hunting”. Our travel time will be approxmately 2 ½ hours, but I think its worth the time. We will meet members of the Savini Company, and then roll up our slacks as we enter the woods along with our trusted Tuscan dogs who will accompany us in the searching quest of the truffles. Lunch will be based on truffles, with additional truffle-prepared condiments and flavors. In the afternoon we will depart to return to Casentino, and along the way stop at Caporali, where the protagonist is the Blowing Steel., a long tradition which began in 1885 and has reached the 5th generation today. Artisanal and hand-made products, the pride of the Made in Italy, but especially Tuscany. Evening dinner in the typical Borgo of Raggiolo at the restaurant Il Convivio dei Corsi. Return to Borgo Corsignano for the overnight stay. (Included in your price: lodging, travel, breakfast, lunch, dinner, tastings, wines, museums, master class presentations).

Day 6, Saturday, October 20th
Today the journey will take us to Valdarno, a valley located north-west of Arezzo. Continental breakfast at Borgo Corsignano, followed by travel to Valdarno for about 1 ½ hours. We will make a stop to visit the Borro a tiny village where time has practically stopped, a new experience for us Americans for sure. We will then visit the Il Borro winery, where a panel of experts will accompany us through the tasting, the methology of wine-making and the difference between barrels and barrique. Lunch at Il Borro. Afternoon return to the Casentino region with must-stop in Bibbiena. Visit to the historical palazzi, followed by another Master Class by Simone Fracassi on the history of Tuscan meats and its preparation.

(Included in your price: lodging, travel, breakfast, lunch, dinner, tastings, wines, museums, master class presentations).

Day 7th, Sunday October 21st
Today we will stay in the Casentino. Continental breakfast, followed by a 40 minute travel to La Verna. We will visit the sanctuary where St. Francis of Assisi received the stigmata, a special spot for spiritual retreats surrounded by nature. The lunch will be at Soci in the area of Bibbiena and enjoy the delicacies of the Ristorante La Buca, where the main protagonist is fresh hand-made pasta according to Tuscan traditions. In the afternoon, we will visit the valley of Camaldoli with visit to the local monastery. Evening dinner at Moggiona di Poppi at Ristorante Mater.  Return to Borgo Corsignano for the overnight stay.

(Included in your price: lodging, travel, breakfast, lunch, dinner, tastings, wines, museums, master class presentations).

Day 8th Monday October 22
Continental breakfast at Borgo Corsignano, followed by early departure to Rome’s Leonardo da Vinci Airport (FCO) for the return flights

Additional Trip Details

Single occupancy available for an additional $250.00 PP / Suite $ 500
Deposit $550 for reservation (non-refundable).
Please read our cancellation policy before making your payment.
The following is included in the price / All land transportation during tour / including trip from airport and return.
Single occupancy available for an additional $250.00 PP / Suite $ 500

Please read our cancellation policy before making your payment

For additional detail

carmela@chefwalter.com 401-273-2652 / we will hold your reservation without deposit for 10 days. A $550 non-refundable deposit is required to hold a reservation for tour at time of reservation. We reserve the right to modify the program based on unexpected factors.

Payments

By check payable to: Walter Potenza 286 Atwells Avenue, Providence RI 02903

• Not included your Airfare •

PAYMENT / Payment in full is required at least 90 days prior to departure REFUNDS / In the event that we must cancel a trip, you will be given a full refund of all deposits and payments.

We do not give refunds of deposits or final payments for tours that commence as scheduled, including for unused portions of the tour. We do give credit for cancellations as noted below.

Cancellation policy

In the event you cancel your tour for any reason, we allow credit for payments (but not the non-refundable deposit) in the following way: • 100% credit for future tours given with 90 days notice. • 60% credit for future tours given with notice of 60 to 89 days.

• 30% credit for future tours given with notice of 30 to 59 days. • No credit is issued for cancellation less than 30 days prior to start date of the tour. • All cancellation credits are good for one year from the start date of the originally scheduled tour. We strongly encourage trip insurance. (Contact your credit card company for additional information).


FOR ALL DETAILS CONTACT CARMELA AT 401-273-2652         info@italianculinarycenter.com

Italian Culinary Experiences / 286 Atwells Avenue, Providence, Rhode Island 02903 / 401.273.2652


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