Living the Real Tuscan Dream

Tuscany is one of the world’s most popular destinations, and it is the perfect destination for Tuscany cooking vacations! But its increase in popularity make the “authentic” Tuscany at times a little harder to find. But look no further: this unique Tuscany culinary vacation is meant exclusively for those who are looking for a true Tuscany food tour, the Tuscany lived by the Tuscans themselves. Immerse yourself in the Chianti countryside, take a break from the hi-tech world by embracing local slow rhythms and medieval rituals, and rediscover the pleasures and pure joy of simple food, gorgeous scenery, and beautiful souls on one of our best Tuscany cooking vacations!

Chef Andrea defines himself as your Chianti “host” for your Tuscany food tour, which explains a lot about his personality. An avid adventurer and great communicator, he has lived in Chianti his entire life, knows every single corner of the region, and through his different professional ventures has always shared his limitless passion for his land: he ran a restaurant, gave guided visits to a historical winery for years, and has organized Tuscan dinners all around the US.

What essentially marks the difference in between Italian and other cuisines, as you will discover on our Tuscany wine tours and Tuscany cooking vacations, is the importance of fresh and tasty ingredients versus the preparation techniques. Apart from the cooking phase which is of course a key component, the focus of this culinary vacation in Tuscany is definitely the “journey” that all the local ingredients make before ending up in the kitchen. You will pick up the veggies from the chef’s garden, learn more about the seasonal ingredients and talk to the local producers (meat, cheese, olive oil, wine and more).

Of course, our Tuscany wine tours and Tuscany cooking vacations would not be complete without a thorough exploration of the local culture through gastronomic visits, artisan food tastings, winery visits, and Tuscany wine tasting tours. Visit Andrea in his native Tuscany on our Tuscany cooking vacations and live the real Tuscan dream!


Latest Review

I gave this trip 5 stars
Thomas
WA
Trip taken June 2019
From virtually the moment we arrived at Chef Andrea's Country Cottage, we felt warmly received and genuinely welcomed. We met Andrea's wife, Enza and son, Luca. Their prepared lunch was a welcome repast after a lengthy journey through 3 airports and a long flight. The entire week was a great balance of plenty of adventures in nearby towns intermixed with enjoyable cooking lessons at the villa, eating great food and drinking local wine (with a bonus of Andrea Bocelli belting out Italian opera songs). We learned a lot, we laughed frequently and felt blessed just to be there.

Trip Details

4 cooking classes on authentic Tuscan cuisine featuring:

  • visits to Andrea’s garden to pick fruits and vegetables
  • classic Tuscan recipes
  • pizza and bread making class
  • a special seasonal food visit based on the time of year, such as mushrooming in September or foraging for wild asparagus in the spring


We Can Help Plan It All

Flights, additional nights and tours, Transportation, and Much More

We might not be able to pack for you, but there are tons of things we can help with to make your vacation that much better.

Contact us for more information, or you can indicate your interest during check out and we will follow up directly!

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Itinerary

Day One

  • Transfer from Florence airport or train station in the late morning or early afternoon to Andrea’s home in the Chianti countryside (about 1 hour away) for your week-long culinary vacation in Tuscany.
  • Check in to your home for the week, a little slice of heaven, and enjoy a welcome glass of wine.
  • Welcome dinner prepared by Andrea, who will introduce the program for your week-long Tuscany food and wine tour.

Tuscany vacation BandB


Day Two

  • Fresh homemade breakfast served at the house.
  • In the morning meet Andrea in his veggie garden, learn more about his particular way to grow plants, and then gather the seasonal vegetables for your first class. Your hands-on Tuscan cooking class will be held right afterwards, lunch to follow based on your efforts.
  • In the afternoon enjoy a half-day excursion to another favorite destination of our Tuscany cooking vacations, nearby Siena, called also “The Gothic Dream.” Meet your licensed local guide and learn about the history and legends of the town which was long the obstinate enemy of Florence. Explore “Il Campo,” the enormous square where Palio horse race has been held for centuries twice a year. You will have some time on your own for shopping before savoring a tasty dinner in the evocative atmosphere of Siena.
  • Return home after dinner. Overnight.

Cooking class in Tuscany


Day Three

  • Fresh homemade breakfast served at the house.
  • In the morning meet Andrea in the kitchen for your second Tuscany cooking class with lunch to follow based on your efforts.
  • In the afternoon transfer to a winery featuring Tuscany wine tours that let our travelers learn about the flavors of the indigenous Tuscan grapes and the terroir needed to produce authentic and wonderful Tuscan wines. Enjoy a guided wine tasting tour in Tuscany of the wine cellars and a tasting of olive and wine to follow.
  • Return to your home. Dinner at the house and overnight.

Vineyard in Italy


Day Four

  • Fresh homemade breakfast served at the house.
  • The schedule for this morning’s Tuscany cooking vacation activities varies according to the season, as it will be dependent on a special ingredient: in early September you might grab mushrooms and take part in the wine harvest or additional Tuscany wine tasting tours; in November you would pick the olives; in summer time you would make home made gelato in a nearby gelateria in Castellina in Chianti; in the springtime you might go hunting for wild asparagus and make sausage in a local butcher shop. Lunch included and based on the seasonal ingredient.
  • In the late afternoon join Andrea in his kitchen for a pizza and bread baking class and learn about yeast and baking techniques. Pizza dinner to follow.
  • Overnight.

Cooking class al fresco


Day Five

  • Fresh homemade breakfast served at the house.
  • At 11.00 am meet your private driving guide and enjoy a full day excursion to Southern Tuscany, another perfect destination for our Tuscany cooking vacations.
  • Your Italy food tour will start this morning Podere il Casale, a local cheese-maker in the Pienza countryside where you will learn about their cheese making traditions and have an entirely cheese-based lunch.
  • Head to  Pienza, a true symbol of the Renaissance. Walk along the narrow, romantic streets of this tiny village that was home to Pope Pius II and that still perfectly represents the essence of Tuscany over five hundreds years later.
  • The next stop will be Montepulciano, a lovely hill-top medieval village with perfectly preserved walls and great views on Orcia valley hills. Enjoy some time on your own in town, and make sure to climb the Public Palace and to stop in an underground cellars for one of the best Tuscany wine tours to sip a glass of Nobile, Montepulciano’s signature full bodied red wine.
  • Stop for dinner on your own on the way back to Andrea’s.

Tuscan town


Day Six

  • Fresh homemade breakfast served at the house.
  • This morning you will have free time to relax by the pool or hike in the countryside on your own. Lunch based on Andrea’s garden vegetables will be served.
  • After lunch enjoy your farewell Tuscan cooking class with a final dinner to follow.
  • Overnight.

Kitchen in Tuscany


Day Seven

  • Breakfast, a fond farewell to Andrea, and departure transfer to Florence airport or train station. We hope you have enjoyed your Tuscany culinary vacation!

Trip Details

Included in the 6-Night Trip

Accommodations

6 nights accommodations in farmhouse

Food & Beverages

  • Daily breakfast
  • 5 lunches
  • 5 dinners
  • Local wine included with all included meals

Classes & Instructors

4 cooking classes on authentic Tuscan cuisine featuring:

  • visits to Andrea’s garden to pick fruits and vegetables
  • classic Tuscan recipes
  • pizza and bread making class
  • a special seasonal food visit based on the time of year, such as mushrooming in September or foraging for wild asparagus in the spring

Excursions

  • Half-day excursion to Siena, including tour with licensed guide
  • Visit of Tuscan winery with Andrea
  • Seasonal food excursion on day 4
  • Excursion to southern Tuscany featuring Montepulciano, Pienza, and a cheese producer

Transfer Details

  • Roundtrip transfers from Florence airport or train station

Accommodation Information

Lying on gentle Chianti hills, Andrea’s rustic farmhouse B&B is in a perfect location for those who wish to experience authentic Tuscan life: the house was originally a barn, lovingly restored and converted into three simple, large bedrooms, each with private bathroom (outside the room but private). The house offers a large outdoor area with a scenic pool, Andrea’s personal vegetable garden, vineyards and olive groves. Breakfast with fresh eggs from the roost and local cheeses is served daily.

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There are also 2 lovely double rooms with en suite bathroom available at a wine estate just 150 meters from Andrea’s house (and owned by Andrea’s cousin) .

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Pricing & Tour Dates

Looking for tour date information?


Year-Round Pricing:

6-night Program
US$3600 per person based on double occupancy
  • Add US$350 for single occupancy (use of a double room by 1 person)
  • Subtract US$300 per person when booking 4 or more people

30% deposit due to confirm booking.
Balance payment due 60 days prior to tour start date. Questions? Please contact us!

Olive Oil and Mushroom Week Pricing:
October 27-November 2, 2019

based on a minimum of 4 people

6-night Program
US$3100 per person based on double occupancy
  • Add US$350 for single occupancy (use of a double room by 1 person)

Tour Dates

Available any week you choose starting on Sunday for a minimum of 2 people.

2019
Available the following weeks. For other weeks, please inquire.
September 15-21†
October 13-19
October 27-November 2† (mushroom and olive oil week – please inquire for itinerary)

†Join a week others have already confirmed.

Pricing & Dates

Class Pricing

Reviews

I gave this trip 5 stars
Thomas
WA
Trip taken June 2019
From virtually the moment we arrived at Chef Andrea's Country Cottage, we felt warmly received and genuinely welcomed. We met Andrea's wife, Enza and son, Luca. Their prepared lunch was a welcome repast after a lengthy journey through 3 airports and a long flight. The entire week was a great balance of plenty of adventures in nearby towns intermixed with enjoyable cooking lessons at the villa, eating great food and drinking local wine (with a bonus of Andrea Bocelli belting out Italian opera songs). We learned a lot, we laughed frequently and felt blessed just to be there.
We gave this trip 5 stars
Thomas (Thom) & Edith (Edie)
OH
Trip taken May 2019
Great trip! Andrea was always working to customize what we did and what we cooked to our needs and interests. Since we don’t have any food allergies or dietary restrictions we were open to and able to try a number of interesting things including chicken liver and heart pate, beef tongue, mussels and octopus, pizza dough and pasta made with flour from ancient grains. When we first arrived Andrea’s wife, Enza and son, Luka greeted us on our arrival and prepared a simple lunch of Italian cold cuts that were far better than what we had eaten in the US. Talking about the cold cuts lead to a trip to a local butcher where we watched sausage being made and later discovered it to be the best sausage we had ever tasted. We spent part of the next day with Andrea’s farmer friend, Daniela, talking about ancient grains, which he grows and mills, and watching the preparation of pizza dough and bread. Later Daniela’s wife, Barbara joined us and made numerous pizzas of different kinds, including one with gorgonzola cheese and squash blossoms, all of which were cooked in a brick food fired oven by Daniela. The pizza was another “best” we ever had. At another meal Enza came back and served an octopus dish she had prepared for us along with the best (yes, a third “best”) mussels we had ever had. We had previously mentioned to Andrea that someone doing a review for TIK had mentioned that they visited him for their 50th wedding anniversary and that this was also our 50th anniversary trip. Because of this Andrea had arranged for a signing, guitar playing friend to serenade us at dinner time (since we had never had a personal serenade before, I think we can count this one as another “best”). The final day we were up to our elbows in ancient grain flour making pasta dough. I keep asking what type of pasta we were making and Andrea kept not answering because when it cam time to do the shaping we made we made at least a six or eight different types. Several pieces of pasta were severed with a fresh sofrito we had prepared along with the pasta. Andrea showed us how the people of Tuscany are able to create an abundance of good food from a limited number of fresh ingredients and without many items, like butter and cream, that we have grown accustomed to using. Over all this was a wonderful experience with lots of personal “bests’ and, oh, yes, plenty of Chianti Classico to complement the food!
We gave this trip 5 stars
Craig & Marcia
Arizona
Trip taken April 2018
Both of our experiences were unique and truly exceptional. Both Andrea and Deborah went out of their way to provide us with hands on cooking lessons, eating experiences and side trips that allowed us to immerse ourselves into the Tuscan region of Italy. Every cooking class was a new experience and both Andrea and Deborah's personalities made it so easy to feel comfortable and at ease while learning new skills. Our excursions and wine tastings were each different and informative... Exceptional lodging arrangements and great locations for two fabulous and unique experiences. Adrian did an exceptional job in fulfilling each and every step for our "Dream" vacation and cooking experience. We were celebrating our 50 Wedding Anniversary and we felt very special as the itinerary included awesome moments to commemorate this special event. Thank you again for a most amazing cooking experience and vacation!! (Note from TIK: These clients also participated in our Tuscany's Left Bank: Bolgheri and Supertuscans cooking vacation.)