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10 Days Culinary Tour and Cooking Vacations in Italy

  • Hotel Giulio Cesare, Via degli Scipioni, 287, 00192 Roma - Boscolo Hotel Astoria, Via del Giglio, 9, 50123 Florence

Unique Culinary Tours and Cooking Holidays Italy

See, feel, and taste! Join Cupini's Italia on this adventure throughout Roma and Tuscana, it is certain to be a fantastic journey! Immerse in the Italian culture from the culinary practices to traditional points of interest throughout the region. Franco looks forward to sharing with you his perspectives as one that has grown up there and share things from a view point through his eyes, as well as listen to your thoughts as you create these experiences together.

Highlights

  • Authentic cooking classes
  • Meat and cheese factory tour, and visiting Assisi
  • A full day wine tasting and making at Castello Monterinaldi
  • Walking tour at Rome and Colosseum underground experience
  • Truffle hunting and delicious food tour in Florence
  • 9 nights accommodation
  • Airport transfers
  • Daily meals
  • 9 days with instruction
  • Italian, English
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Hotel Giulio Cesare (four nights)

Located down a tranquil street of Rome‘s Prati district and a few minutes away from Saint Peter’s basilica and Piazza del Popolo, the four-star hotel in Rome Giulio Cesare awaits you in the elegant and upscale setting of an ancient patrician villa, which dates back to the end of the 19th century. Set in the heart of the historical city center, Hotel Giulio Cesare provides the ideal location for both business travelers and tourists on a trip to discover Rome.

All rooms at the Giulio Cesare are exquisitely renovated and quiet as they overlook a particularly tranquil, low-traffic street of the Prati district. Spacious and welcoming, their rooms were conceived to make their guests feel at home, preciously furnished and equipped with every comfort. Elegantly finished in marble or luxurious ceramic tiles, the bathrooms all feature a direct dial telephone, shower or bath, hair dryer, makeup mirror, and bathroom amenities.

Boscolo Hotel Astoria Florence (five nights)

With its inestimable artistic treasures, Florence is undoubtedly the Italian Renaissance capital. Boscolo Hotel Astoria Florence is located in this timeless magnificent city, precisely in two ancient buildings in the heart of Florence which belonged to noble Florentine families, Palazzo Gaddi and Palazzo Andrighetti.

Boscolo Hotel Astoria's kind guests will be accommodated in the elegant Florentine style comfortable rooms of these palaces, choosing among the different kinds of lodging offered. Everything in this fabulous four-star accommodation shows the charm of the Renaissance Florence, from the welcoming hall to the guest rooms, from the fine restaurant and bar to the conference room, all in harmonious combination with the ultimate in modern comfort, for a dream-like relaxing wonderful stay.

Along the way, you will be accompanied by photographer, Edward Leahy, who will be documenting the trip and putting together a photo book for everyone when you return, so you do not have to worry about your camera. Additionally, Franco's good friend, Luciano, will be assisting you with all your transportation needs with his new 2017 Mercedes bus and two vans.

Franco himself and the team will be there to assist you with any needs that may arrive, so that you can enjoy beautiful Rome and Florence and not have to worry about a single thing.

Daily schedule

Day 1 - Arrival

Upon your arrival at Leonardo da Vinci International Airport (FCO), you will be transferred to Hotel Giuliu Cesar. After enjoying your welcome drink, you will go on a walking tour of Rome. This evening, let the Eternal City enchant you as you stroll through its picturesque cobblestone alleyways and discover some of the world’s most famous sites, all in a single afternoon!

You will see the Trevi Fountain, Rome Pantheon, and the Spanish Steps along with many of the city's unsung heroes. With your expert, an English-speaking guide on hand, you will get to know Rome, hearing the tales that bring every street corner to life.

Your "Best of Rome" tour starts at the Spanish Steps, one of the most atmospheric spots in Rome. From there, you will trace a path through the cobbled streets of the city to the colossal Trevi Fountain, part water feature, part magnificent sculpture. Listen as your guide explains the strange history behind this famous monument, including the reason why there is one spot from which the entire structure is obscured.

You are in the very heart of Rome now, where narrow streets snake out in every direction. You will stop for a gelato and to recharge your batteries before making your way to the Rome Pantheon. There, you will see Raphael’s tomb and learn the real cause of the famous artist’s death. Not so far away from there, it is his contemporary who steals the limelight.

Perhaps the most beautiful square in all of Rome, Piazza Navona is home to spectacular Renaissance buildings and Gian Lorenzo Bernini’s beautiful "Fountain of Four Rivers", the sculpture that saved his reputation after he almost tore St. Peter's Basilica in half.

Your tour ends in Campo dei Fiori, a favorite hangout among locals. Like so many of the sites you will visit on your tour, this piazza has a history you never would have guessed. After the tour, you will visit Franco's good friend, Fabio, at his restaurant right next to the Trevi Fountain called "That’s Amore" for your first feast together.

Day 2 - Cooking class at Tibernia Island

There is an archaic saying, most likely as ancient as Rome, "When in Rome, do as the Romans do." Thus is the basis of which Cupini's Italia has orchestrated their cooking lessons. Their walking tour intertwines the discovery of the magical Italian cuisine juxtaposed with the sightseeing beauty that in this world only Rome has to offer. You will see Rome through the eyes of a local and find fresh ingredients in local neighborhoods of Rome.

Cooking classes run for around four hours and you will stay a while after cooking to sit down together to enjoy the meal you have learned to cook, accompanied by local wines from the region, finishing at about 3:00 p.m. Set upon the exclusive Tiberina Island right in the center of Rome, is enthusiastic cook, Fabio’s private apartment where you will learn Italian cooking techniques and the skills to cook delicious Italian dishes with a focus on making fresh pasta dishes.

Under the guidance of your fun and friendly Italian host, Fabio, Monica, or Federico, who are passionate about Italian cooking, you will immerse yourself in Italian life to discover the gastronomic delights of Rome. The aim of the course is to give you the techniques needed to cook different pasta dishes as well as one meat dish (vegetarians can be catered for) that will give you the skills to make and cook delicious fresh pasta to impress your friends back home.

Fabiolous Cooking Day is a course designed by Fabio Bongianni putting together Italian food and Italian culture to offer to those visiting Rome a unique experience. Fabio was born in Rome in 1961. His career began as a lawyer, before he realized that his true passion was cooking.

Day 3 - Rome food tour and Colosseum underground experience

When you come on Cupini's Italia's food tours in Rome, you will get to try many famous Italian dishes, all guaranteed to get your taste buds tingling. Firstly, your local Italian guide will take you to a delightful little café at the world famous Piazza Navona, to soak up the atmosphere and taste brewed-to-perfection Italian cappuccino or espresso.

Next, you will try two types of the best and most fresh pizzas in town. Your personal guide will explain the history of the square and the surrounding areas including the Jewish ghetto, Campo dei Fiori and Trastevere (depending on weather and day). Your tour will continue to a shop that specializes in supplì or fried risotto balls, and you will take a trip to the fantastic vegetable market at Campo Dei Fiori.

See the world-famous Roman ruins, Isola island, and many other monuments. Taste two typical Roman pastas, including carbonara, in a small restaurant in the old Jewish quarter. Enjoy the finest Italian hams, salamis, and cheeses near the Roman Bridge, a secret place only known by the locals. Finally, the tour ends with real Sicilian gelato in the beautiful area of Trastevere. Oh, and of course there is Cupini's Italia's delicious secret dish, too!

To end the day, you will be heading to the Colosseum for an exclusive night tour. You will begin your enchanted evening with a glass of Prosecco, some wine, and a delectable four-course silver service meal at one of Rome’s best rooftop restaurants. There, you will be joined by an English-speaking expert guide and an intimate group of up to 15 people.

While you are admiring the beautiful views over the illuminated Trajan’s Forum, your guide will describe ancient Rome, telling tales that make the ruins you see come alive. His descriptions of Roman cuisine will make your authentic dinner even more delicious. The dinner lasts from approximately 7:30 p.m. to 9:15 p.m.

When you have finished your Roman feast, you will be guided past the Roman and Julius Caesar Forum until you are standing in front of the imposing highlight of the evening, the Colosseum. Entering with your pre-booked access, you will begin to explore an almost empty Colosseum, including the recently opened arena floor and underground level.

Day 4 - Cooking class at Fooxia

You will begin the morning with a cooking class at Fooxia. Nestled in the picturesque narrow alleyways of the Jewish Ghetto, the oldest continuous Jewish presence outside Israel, is Fooxia Cooking School. You will be gathering all supplies from the local market to prepare your meals. The course concentrates on the techniques to make fresh pasta (flour and egg, and flour and water) with the accompanying sauces and a second dish.

Your meal will consist of appetizer, two first dishes, and the second dish with side dish and dessert (water and wine). You will have the rest of the day free for you to spend exploring Rome.

Day 5 - Transfer to Florence

This morning, you will begin your transfer to Florence. As you drive through Tuscany, you will stop at a family-owned meat and cheese factory, where you will look at the different aging of meats that they produce, a variety of cheeses, followed with a tasting of their products with lunch and wine.

Late afternoon, you will arrive in Florence with accommodations at Hotel Boscolo Astoria, just blocks away from the Duomo, with great rooftop views, should you prefer wine on the roof for an evening. After everyone is settled in, you will head to Cupini's Italia's favorite Trattoria Pandemonio, to dine and wine as a group.

Day 6 - Wine tasting and making at Castello Monterinaldi

Spend the morning alongside the wine maker learning about the art of blending and aging wine. You will visit the cellar, select your grapes, and blend your own wine. You will also create a personalized label. The winery will then bottle, label, and ship your wine to Cupini’s in the U.S.

Following the wine making activity, you will enjoy a typical Tuscan lunch on the property. On the return, you will stop at the renowned Piazzale Miachelangelo to experience beautiful views of Florence, a perfect spot for panoramic views of the city. Afterwards, you will return for an evening of free time.

Day 7 - Taste of Florence food tour

Today, you will take a delicious walking tour of Florence. See the city and get to know its people by tasting some of the best Tuscan specialties around. Your guide will take you to the central market, where you will see the freshest products from the variety of farms throughout the region.

You will also visit a family bread making shop to savor in their unbelievable fare, enjoy a wine tasting, do a tasting at a small prosciutto, salami, or pork shop, and finally top it all off with unbelievable gelato. Please do not eat any breakfast today, as this is going to be a walking wining and dining feast.

Day 8 - Florence Food Studio

Today, you will spend your morning and afternoon to enjoy and explore all the beautiful streets and shops that Florence has to offer. As you will be at the heart of Florence, everything is in walking distance. Perhaps visit the Duomo Museum, this has been a past favorite!

In the evening, you will visit the Florence Food Studio. There, Franco Cupini will teach you a course at a boutique cooking school which offers skills in traditional Tuscan culinary arts with a modern twist.

The project is driven by a dedicated collaboration between the world renown Florentine D.O.C., Chef Benedetta Vitali, and two young Florentine aficionados dedicated to preserving their Tuscan heritage, Paolo Dellafiore and Giorgio Pinto. The focus this evening is on transmitting Italian cooking skills and secrets but at the same time on health, nutrition, and well-being, all innate elements of the traditional Italian diet.

Day 9 - Truffle hunting experience

Today, you are going truffle hunting in Florence. Luciano will transport you to the forest in San Miniato where you will meet up with your truffle hunter and his dogs. He will give you the insides into truffle hunting and about the intricacies involved and the very elaborate training that his dogs go through. Can you believe each of his dogs are valued at over 65,000 USD? From there, you will go on a live demonstration through the hills watching the dogs and the hunter at work.

When you are all finished there, you will return for a wine tasting that features different grapa, including one infused with truffle. You will enjoy a lunch there before transporting back to Florence. This evening, you will enjoy your final group meal together, before packing your bags for going back home.

Day 10 - Departure

Your Rome and Florence culinary tour has come to an end. It is time to pack your bags. You will be transferred to Florence Airport, Peretola (FLR) to catch your flight home.

  • Enjoy a day of Rome food tour and Colosseum underground experience
  • Enjoy a walking tour of Rome
  • Enjoy the "Taste of Florence" food tour
  • Enjoy wine tasting and making at Castello Monterinaldi
  • Go truffle hunting in Florence, at a forest in San Miniato
  • Make a stop at the renowned Piazzale Miachelangelo to experience beautiful views of Florence
  • Visit a family-owned meat and cheese factory
  • Visit the Tibernia Island and have a cooking class there
  • Agostino Franco Cupini

    Agostino Franco Cupini was born in Rome in 1944. After attending Bernini Institute at the University of Rome, he received his early cooking experience at the Enalc Hotel School in Rome where he was tutored by the top chefs of Italy. After graduation, Franco went to work as an assistant chef at the prestigious, 600 Room, Grand Hotel in Rome, where he developed an impressive reputation among celebrities, dignitaries, and the European aristocracy. Franco currently owns Cupini’s in Kansas City, which has received national acclaim by USA TODAY, Zagat, and two shows on the Food Network.

This culinary and cooking tour will take you to various impressive culinary points of interests in Rome and Florence.

During this holiday, you will be able to savor various delicacies that is unique to Italian cuisines. On your first night, you will be able to enjoy a welcome dinner at Franco's good friend, Fabio at his restaurant right next to the Trevi Fountain, called That’s Amore.

You will also be able to taste the best and most fresh pizzas, typical Roman pastas, a four-course silver service meal at one of Rome’s best rooftop restaurants, a tasting of cheese and wine right at the factory, a dinner at Trattoria Pandemonio, a tasting at a small prosciutto, salami, or pork shop, and more.

During your stay in both Rome and Florence, you will be able to have free time to explore the surroundings on your own.

  • 9 nights accommodation
  • Airport transfer from Leonardo da Vinci International Airport (FCO)
  • Airport transfer to Florence Airport, Peretola (FLR)
  • Colloseum underground tour
  • Cooking class at Fooxia
  • Cooking class at Tibernia Island
  • Florence Food Studio cooking class and demonstration
  • Meals included in the itinerary
  • Meat and cheese factory tour and visiting Assisi
  • Professional English-speaking tour guides
  • "Taste of Florence" food tour
  • Transportation within the holiday itinerary
  • Truffle hunting
  • Walking tour of Rome
  • Welcome drinks with dinner at That's Amore
  • Wine tasting and making at Castello Monterinaldi
  • Airfare
  • Cooking package
  • Personal expenses
  • Photo package
  • Tips and gratuities

Arrival by airplane

Please book your flight to arrive at Leonardo da Vinci International Airport (FCO). Transfer from and to the airport is included. Cupini's Italia will pick you up from the airport.

  • The deposit is fully refundable if the booking is cancelled up to 60 days before the arrival date.
  • The rest of the payment should be paid 60 days before arrival.