During Rita's informative years, she gradually immersed herself in the culture, customs, and traditions of her parents and grandparents, and, in particular, their culinary cultures. Rita studied the ancient secrets and techniques of the traditional Tuscan cooking and kept alive certain recipes that lost. She has been in Barga for almost 30 years running her bed and breakfast apartments together with her children, and she has now opened her cooking school.
from Belgium, August 2018
"Home away from home, without the cleaning"
The program is excellent for a first introduction to Italian cooking and Tuscany. Rita is super friendly and you feel immediately at home, only you don't have to clean up the mess in the kitchen :-) We were busy with nice activities besides cooking and eating, but also had enough free time to rest. Friends and family would also stop by for visits and sometimes dinner, adding to the homey feel. I had luck that there were several festivals so the evenings were also fun. And the wine is almost never-ending, starting with an aperitif around 11 am til as late as you want. The airport pick-up/drop-off service is also great. Overall an excellent worry-free vacation!
from United States, May 2018
"A life-changing experience"
I have, for my entire adult life, dreamed of taking a culinary vacation in Tuscany. My time at La Mezza Luna met the expectations of that dream within the first few hours. Rita is genuine, hilarious, kind and a fantastic teacher. She became part of our group, interacting with us, sharing personal stories and getting to know us. The recipes she guided us through were both complex and simple -- but they were all delicious and, more importantly, doable by home-chefs. Rita's partner Alex was part of our group, as well. He kept the wine flowing and the karaoke machine warmed up. I can't say enough about this experience. I will never forget a single moment.
from United States, September 2017
All-inclusive Rustic Tuscan Nirvana. Measured in terms of hospitality, quality and quantity of recipe preparation, value, and excursions, if rated from 0-5, this goes to 11! We took the 7-day course. Obligatory pasta, pizza, and tiramisu instructions were simple and glorious. Chef Rita offered the opportunity to craft other menus to personal tastes. We chose more rustic variations. All exceeded expectations. Whether it was going to the market, off-the-beaten-path journeys, or to the Vinery for a drink, we felt part of Tuscany. Brilliant/super/awesome experience!
from United Kingdom, August 2018
"1st Solo visit to Mezza Luna "
As a novice solo traveller I found the experience really refreshing. I felt at home straight away and was made feel very welcome. The cooking experience mixed with touring the local area was perfect, Rita and Alex make a great team. I highly recommend this trip, especially for female solo travellers.
from United States, August 2018
" Rita, Ricardo and Alex were AWESOME."
Staying at La Mezzaluna did not feel like a hotel or a school, I felt I was visiting relatives who would invite me to cook with them.
The story of how I ended up going on this trip is an interesting one but I wouldn't change the outcome for anything in the world.
Rita was AWESOME (inside joke for the amazing group who went to this trip).
Her level of energy and patience was unparalleled to anyone, and the other attendees made me feel, as a solo traveler, I was meant to be with them.
The food was great, wine was always present, and now I wish I paid more attention to the pie making lessons.
Overall it was a great experience.
from United States, July 2018
"Best vacation of my life!"
Rita is an Italian treasure! She made us immediately feel like a part of her family. The classes are wonderful, Alex’s wines are delicious, and the food is delectable!
from United Kingdom, May 2018
Rita was the perfect hostess; She was a natural, and Alex provided fantastic evenings of entertainment. I learnt so much about cooking delicious Italian recipes and made some fantastic friends who I will keep in contact with
from United Kingdom, May 2018
"Hugely enjoyable stay cooking with Rita "
Rita is very warm and welcoming. She is a fantastic host and knows her Italian cooking and passes down recipes that have gone down generation to generation. The day started with breakfast and we ended up (on a five day/4 night stay course) of visiting local towns on three of the mornings. The group was a nice size of six. We spent two afternoons making various pastas and sauces along with Focaccia bread on one of them, and pizza's on the second.
from United Kingdom, May 2018
"Excellent hopitality and value for money"
Rita was a delight to be with, very attentive and worked tirelessly to look after us. From the meet and greet at the airport, to serving drinks and guiding us around the towns she was great. The cookery lessons were lots of fun, very informative and the food we had delicious. Rita is obviously very knowledgably and happy to guide and support through all the cooking process. Breakfast was good, the all inclusive drinks great and the general atmosphere very relaxed and enjoyable. The 4 visits to the towns and villages were excellent, Rita really supported us with these and again tried very hard to provide a quality visit and experience. All in all a really fun, positive and learning experience. Well done Rita :-)
from Australia, April 2018
The whole 5 days were fabulous. From the location, scenery, atmosphere, food, wine, to the other guests. As a first time solo traveller i was made to feel very welcome and inclusive. The other guests were of similar age and we all got on very well. Rita our host was very hospitable and a lot of fun. Loved the sing along night! Thanks for a great experience Rita!
from Austria, April 2018
"This was a great expernce!! Rita is a great instructor "
The food was amazing, the atmosphere was fun and very relaxed. I liked the cooking lessons, the food we made was amazing, the wines. Rita and Alex hosptality. Getting to see/experirence the beauty of northern Tuscany.
All and all a great experience. A must if you are in Italy!!!!
from Canada, April 2018
"Cooking with Mama Rita. "
Welcoming into her home. Hospitality was excellent. Rita and Alex super enteetainment
from United Kingdom, October 2017
The teaching, the company, the place... the food...
A traveler Canada
From the trip to Alex's wine tasting to the cooking lesson to a fabulous family style dinner, all amazing!! We spent a wonderful day in the company of this family establishment. We will definitely be back!!