Day 1: Arrival in Panzano & Butcher Cecchini
We will pick you up at Florence aiport & drive you to Panzano. In Panzano, you can check in to our villa where we’ll be staying, then walk over to Volpaia Castle, one the most important wineries in Chianti. Enjoy a panoramic lunch at "La Terrazza", this is the best way to start you holiday and meet your new friends. Relax at the Villa in the afternoon. In the evening we’ll discover the secrets of traditional Tuscan cuisine during our cooking class together. At the end of the class, we’ll sit down to taste everything we prepared (enjoyed with a delicious bottle of local wine, of course)!
Day 2: San Gimignano & Picturesque winery
In the morning we’ll drive through the Chianti countryside to San Gimignano. This walled medieval town has been designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site for its extraordinary 14 feudal towers still standing (in the 14th century there were a total of 72!) & its early Renaissance frescoes, which stand as exemplars of the best artistic accomplishments of the era. Take time to explore the town: climb the towers, enjoy a gelato, & shop in the artisan boutiques. Afterwards we’ll meet up for a late lunch & wine tasting at a vineyard with a spectacular view of San Gimignano’s towers. Then we’ll head back to our villa for a good night’s sleep. On our way back to the villa we will stop in a farmhouse where they produce cashmere in the heart of Chianti Classico.
Day 3: Chianti wineries & Siena
In this day you are going to visit SIENA, in a special and more tasty way! Meet our local guide and start the TASTE SIENA tour. Encounter centuries of history as you wander medieval cobblestone alleyways, explore splendid Renaissance palaces, & stroll through the grande piazzas. You’ll have 8 tastings as we walk throughout the historic city center! And there is something even more special .. in the afternoon, we will go in the grand headquarters of one of these contrada, where a house member will show you historic artifacts & share with you the story of Siena’s deep & rivalrous medieval history. Maybe you’ll even find out the contrada’s plan to defeat the neighboring houses in the next Palio. Dinner will be at a classic trattoria in town or at your next villa.
Day 4: Brunello time
We’ll head toward the gorgeous town of Montalcino, stopping along the way to visit the abbey of Monte Oliveto Maggiore & taste some wines. The abbey of Monte Oliveto Maggiore, founded in 1313, is still active today. Monks in white robes pray & walk among the wooded hills – when they’re not praying, they still make their own wines, olive oils, & liquors, which they sell to the public. After the abbey we’ll enjoy a wine tasting at a small boutique winery in the countryside, which specializes in Brunello reds ( super high quality of wines!! ). At lunch time we’ll arrive in Montalcino. We’ll walk around the town, visit the beautiful shops of the town and have lunch in a local Enoteque where the owner will prepare her hand made "pinci" , the typical pasta of Montalcino with a special ragù and paired with wines of Montalcino. Back to the villa and relax in the afternoon. Prepare for dinner we are going to visit Pienza, the "pearl of Valdorcia" ( only 20 min drive ) and have dinner in a spectacular location with a breathtaking view.
Day 5: A restful day at the "Fattoria", cooking your dinner
A restful day: have a walking tour in the vineyards of the Fattoria del Colle, visit the winery and have a wine tasting lunch. In the afternoon cooking class and supper. Possible 20mn walk to Trequanda for a cappuccino.
Day 6: Heading to Umbria, Montepulciano & "Il Nobile"
Today we’ll have a wine tasting of Nobile di Montepulciano reds in a cantina inside the city walls. (Montepulciano has many enticing boutiques!! and is one of the best places to by souvenirs and presents). From there we’ll continue on to Perugia, a town with notable marble Renaissance architecture & medieval defensive walls. After a short tour of Perugia, we’ll dine at one of the best restaurants in town. You accommodation will be a 5 star hotel in the city centre!
Day 7: Assisi churches, Bevagna winery, Deruta ceramics
In the morning we’ll go to Assisi, another UNESCO World Heritage Site & home of the breathtaking San Francesco Basilica. After exploring Assisi, we’ll stop at a small family-owned vineyard for a tasting & healthy lunch. On the way back to our villa, we’ll stop at a Deruta ceramic factory en route before heading back to Perugia for our final cooking class together. Then we’ll eat, drink & celebrate everything we’ve learned about Italian wine, food & culture. Night at the same hotel.
Day 8: Transfer to Florence or Rome
We’ll bring you to Florence or Rome, so that you can continue onward to your next adventure!