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Come and join Tuscany Cook from the fields to the table. We are the first to incorporate the total process of cooking! From buds to flowers, then berries to fruit, discover what happens in the fields during the productive cycle of vines and olive trees, how grapes or olives are transformed into wines and oils and, last but not least, tasting and cooking with them. You will be guided by professional certified chefs, Lisa Banchieri and Elaine Trigiani, during the holiday. Book your place now and indulge your taste buds with Italian and Tuscany cuisine.
The 19th century Villa Baco originally was a monastery. For five generations it has belonged to the Cascino family who restored it and started to host events like weddings, painting, theatre, tango courses, and cooking classes. The luxuriant garden surrounding the Villa has secular plants that give you the opportunity to eat al fresco and a small delightful consecrated chapel to provide a quiet corner for private meditation. From the big garden, you have a stunning views of the gentle rolling hills that lead to the ancient towers of S.Gimignano. The garden gives access to the swimming pool.
The wide swimming pool (16 x 6.50 meters) overlooking the vineyards will invite you to a fresh and relaxing swim. There is plenty of opportunity for creating ones own secluded corner so you can spend your holidays in complete relaxation. The nearby fields will invite you to have a walk or follow the trekking paths nearby.
Inside the Villa is very spacious and all for your personal use. On the first floor, there is a large dining room and a huge living room with sofas and a stone fireplace. The kitchen with a traditional Tuscan fireplace and the old marble table used to prepared bread and pasta fresca, evokes the past. On the ground floor of the villa, there is a large, well-equipped kitchen only for your cooking lessons.
The Villa has nine spacious antique furnished double bedrooms. Named after the flowers of the garden, each room has its own character that combine to create a cozy atmosphere to make you feel completely at home. Some rooms have enclosed bathrooms and some beds can be made up as twins. From every window, you can admire the natural beauty of the Chianti valley.
Let's start cutting and mixing to create your own meal with Lisa or Elaine! They will guide you on 3 cooking lessons of 3 hours each. You will learn how to use olive oil in its natural state or in cooking, how to enhance your cooking with wine, how to use fresh or wild aromatic herbs such as sage, rosemary, the wild nepitella, laurel and much more.
Each day you will explore a complete menu from appetizers to desserts. Each class will be an incredibly fun experience that begins on the ground floor of your 18th century Villa in a fully-equipped separate kitchen. You will receive recipes of the dishes you learned during the cooking classes.
Cooking classes include a 3 course traditional meal, using fresh in-season ingredients. The source are produce / ingredients from local farmers with local recipes which include Roman and Tuscan cuisine. All courses include local wood-fire oven bread, local extra virgin olive oil, and abundant local wines and water to accompany all meals.
Handmade pasta, made the traditional way, using a rolling pin (not a pasta machine)
Local ragu sauce (or vegetarian alternative) to accompany the pasta dish
Saltimbocca alla romana - a classic roman dish using veal, procuitto, and fresh sage (or a vegetarian alternative) with a family recipe sauce served with side salad or vegetable dish
Torta di ricotta alla Romana (traditional roman cake using homemade pastry, that includes a fresh locally sourced ricotta)
Fattoria Baco is 35 kilometers from Florence and 6 kilometers from Certaldo. It is surrounded by many historical cities such as Certaldo, Boccaccios birth place - the author of Decamerone, S.Gimignano; famous for its 15 medieval towers, Montelupo Fiorentino; famous for its ceramics production dating back to the Middle Ages, Colle Val dElsa; the italian capital of glassware. Vinci, Leonardo da Vincis birth place and its interesting museum.
Remain at the estate to enjoy the grounds and the lovely pool, and take magnificent walks in the fields. Naturally, you are welcome to participate to all our extra cooking activities including all excursions and of course to share the amazing dishes your partners have prepared for you!
On request, we can help you to organize extra programs as: hot-air ballooning to float over Chianti vineyards, horseback riding, and bike or Vespa tour, rent-a-car to explore our countryside. We can provide also excursions to Lucca, Pisa and Cinque Terre.
Guests should take the direct train from Firenze Santa Maria Novella train station (the main station) to Certaldo train station. Tuscany Cook will pick you up at Certaldo train station.