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We did a 2 week trip to Italy Monterosso, Venice, Florence, and Rome and besides all of the wonderful sites we got to see, this cooking class was by far one of the best memories we will have. You start the tour off by walking through Florence stopping historic landmarks i.e., Michelangelo's house he grew up in!, one of the oldest bakeries in the city, the downtown market, and so much more.
Next you go off to a farmhouse outside of the city where the views are unimaginable. There you learn how to make a few dishes from the homemaker who lives on the property. This cooking class was so much fun and we spent the entire time laughing and chatting with the others in the group. The food was delicious!!
If we ever make our way back to Florence, we will definately sign up for this cooking class again!
Brilliant fun and a superb value! Our guide, Alisa, took us on a short walk before taking us to the market to get the fresh ingredients for our class. She is very knowledgeable and put us at our ease immediately. Carmella, our chef, was a hoot! She likes to sing as she cooks, and we were all singing by the end of the day. Carmella made cooking fun and the end result was fantastico! Grazie mille, Walkabout Florence!
I have spent the last three years in Firenze for an extended period of time in the fall. I have always wanted to take a cooking class and decided this year it was a top priority. I started looking on the internet and came across this class and after reading the description of the tour I registered. I was not disappointed!! The walking tour fo Firenze was very interesting taking me to streets, a small street market, a bakery/coffee shop and of course a stop at the Mercato Centrale to buy some of the things needed for the class some of which I had never been. The setting for the class was absolutely beautiful overlooking the city of Firenze. The food that we made and sampled through out the day was awesome. The bruschetta and the oven baked pizza were very good complimented with vino and an Italian beer. Making the homemade pasta was something that I will try when I get home as well as the bolognese sauce. We also made the pork roast and roasted potatoes, tiramisu and gelato. We all sat down for dinner after the class and tasted all of our hard work as well as having some Italian wine to go with dinner.
I just can't say enough about Sandra and Lavi our tour guides. I was in Sandra's group and she made everything so enjoyable. She shared information on the walking tour with us about the history of Firenze during the Medieval times, the Medici family and what to expect through out the day for the tour. Our chef at the farmhouse was awesome too. She didn't speak much English but through hand gestures and song we were all able to understand and follow instructions.
I would highly recommend this experience to anyone looking for a fun filled day and a great dinner experience with some of the most popular dishes of Tuscany
Dec 1, 2015
Taste of Italy: Best Cooking Class Ever!!!!
I found this cooking class on viator.com along with several others and this one stood out to be one of the top rated. I have taken several cooking classes and this one was by far the best!!!!! The guides Gloria and Julian did an amazing job sharing history of the city during the market/city tour and also did a great job translating for the chef. During the course we learned to make several Italian dishes pork roast, gelato, bruschetta, pizza, pasta, and tirimisu which all turned out amazing. The class was very hands on and extremely entertaining. You are sure to have a lot of fun throughout the tour! The Italian chef can't remember her name was VERY vibrant, enthusiastic, and exhibited a true passion for cooking. Although the chef did not speak much English the guides did a great job translating everything. If you are ever in Florence do not pass up on the opportunity of taking this class. YOU WILL NOT BE DISAPPOINTED! I would suggest taking any tour this local tour operator offers because it will be worth it. I am so glad I chose this tour. What a wonderful experience
This tour was amazing! It was the highlight of our 10 day trip in Italy. Our guide Lavinia was absolutely wonderful and full of knowledge. Before making our way to the farmhouse, our guide gave us an amazing historical food tour if you will, of some of Florence's oldest and most famous bakeries, markets, and granaries. We picked up local ingredients that we later used in the kitchen. The entire staff was magical and an absolute pleasure. I highly recommend this tour for anyone with a love of cooking and learning more about the Italian cuisine.
This was, hands down, the best part of my month long Euro trip. Gloria was fantastic. From the market to the kitchen everything was extremely enjoyable. The food was fantastic and the experience of cooking it with everyone there made it even better. This is a must for those that are looking for a memorable and fun day in Italy.
Julian for sure was best tour guide gave us a walking tour idea about Florence while market shopping for our food stuff as well enjoyed much the cooking class of Camilla which has her lovely spirts in way she cook and fantastic atmosphere for all of our lovely group , I have delay my review till I cooked all what we had to family which let all my family and friends wishing to have same chance for booking same cooking program with Julian and Camilla best regards for all especially Pizza great boss and her assistance
My husband and I were on a two-week trip, and this was our final tour. We had been looking forward to it, and we were not disappointed! Gloria and Molly were our guides and did a fantastic job. The group of approximately 25 were divided into two, and we were with Gloria's group. Gloria led us on a great walking tour through the historic center of Florence. We stopped at a vegetable market to buy tomatoes and fresh basil for the bruschetta we would be making later that day. Then, off to a bakery to buy the bread for our bruschetta and to enjoy a cappuccino. Our final stop before heading to the farmhouse was the Mercata Centrale--what an amazing place! We bought Parmagianno Reggiano sampled some, too and the beef, which was ground fresh as we waited. Off to the farmhouse in Tuscany! Our chef, Carmella, was a ball of energy and thought us how to make bruschetta, pizza, homemade pasta, ragu sauce, roast pork, rosemary potatoes, tiramisu and gelato! The hands-on experience was so much fun! We were able to enjoy our new Italian culinary skills as we ate all of the amazing dishes we made--complemented nicely by plenty of Chianti Classico! I highly recommend this tour--you will not be disappointed!
My wife and I had an amazing time on this tour learning to cook and learning some history about Florence. Julian was our guide and took us around the city and showed us some of the local markets which my wife and I later visited during our time in Florence. He was friendly, informative and made the tour a lot of fun. The cooking experience at the local farmhouse was amazing. The food, the wine and the company made this experience one of the highlights during our trip to Italy. We would highly recommend.
Amazing time learning to cook and shop around Florence. Jullian was our guide. He was very informative on the city history and spoke English well. The view of the farmhouse was amazing! It made the cooking class more enjoyable. We were able to shop around the market for our ingredients which was great. Good wine and company
The cooking class tour with Walkabout Florence was truly one of the most amazing experiences of our European trip. The staff went above and beyond for us since we were initially lost in the city, not able to find a place to park to meet up with the group - so one of their staff Nickoli came out to find us, took us to meet up with the group and drove our rental car all the way up to where the cooking facility was so we could join the group in the bus! We truly were overwhelmed with joy and endless gratitude! The class was absolutely incredible - educational as we walked around Florence learning the history of the city and background for all the local ingredients we would be using in our class as we toured through the bustling marketplace. Our guide Antonella was an absolute joy the entire time, she made us feel extremely welcome and even took time to catch us up on what my husband and I had missed since we joined the group a bit late. She was incredibly informative, knowledgeable, and so warm you felt that you've known her for years. After the tour in the city we all took a bus up to the gorgeous Florence hills where they have renovated a state of the art cooking facility that overlooks the valley, it's stunning! And we had the pleasure of learning how to cook from Carmella - a wonderfully seasoned local Italian cook who's charm and wit made everyone smile and laugh the whole time along with her wonderful translators Antonella and Levi that all made us feel at home. We had the pleasure of making bruschetta, fresh pasta, ragu, roasted pork, our own pizze napolitana in a wood burning ovens worked by the professionals : and gelato and tiramisu! And of course all was accompanied by incredible Chianti wine the entire time. We got to dine in the beautiful floor to ceiling glass dining room with amazing Tuscan views. What a phenomenal experience this was - cooking with wonderful people in a gorgeous setting- the AMAZING staff - this is highly recommended!
Oh my god! This tour and cooking class vastly exceeded our expectations.
Julian, our guide, was engaging, interactive and entertaining. He gave us a personal florentine experience of the food markets and the city.
When we got to the walkabout estate, we were blown away by the view and the amazing kitchen!
Carmella, our cooking instructor, made us feel so welcome and she taught us how to make every component of our meal using traditional Italian techniques.
Making pizza in the traditional forno was a bonus - the instructors taught us how to toss the dough and tear the basil to make the best Napoli style pizza we've ever had!
When we finally got to eat our meal, we were blown away by every course. We are vegetarians but we happily enjoyed the Tuscan ragu and roasted rosemary pork tenderloin. The tiramisu didn't disapoint either!
If you love food and wine and everything Italian, this is the tour for you!!!!
Julian and Carmella made it the best experience we've had in all of our 3 weeks in Tuscany.
We only wish we had booked more tours with the tour company specifically Julian.
Joseph and Chelsea United States of ...
If you are in Florence, this tour is an absolute must do! My husband and I never do anything touristy when we travel and typically skip tours, but this is unlike any other! Gloria from Walkabout Tours was a fantastic guide, sharing fun and interesting food facts about Florence. Because they split the group in half for the tour, it feels more intimate and you get to experience delicious coffee and samples from the markets. From there we took a bus to the farmhouse and what a beautiful setting! Surrounded by olive trees and such a wonderful kitchen to learn! The setting is breathtaking and the perfect backdrop to learn and eat. Carmella was an absolute joy to learn from, she's very funny and very patient and also very knowledgeable! Gloria and Lavi will translate when needed, but honestly you learn so much just by watching! They also brought in a local pizza maker to teach you all the secrets of getting that thin crust in just a few minutes. You will not be disappointed by this experience and you will leave full and happy. When you get home I guarantee all your friends and family will ask you to cook for them! And you can because the recipes are emailed to you! We'd rate this 10 stars/5 if we could!
OntheRoad United States of ...
It was all wonderful. Gloria and Molly from Walkabout were the greatest. The best experience of the several tours and classes we signed-up for our first trip to Italy. I can't imagine how it could be improved upon. Everything was first rate, and so professional, while still keeping it fun.
The class was informative and concise, as only a hands-on mini apprenticeship can be, I think it's the best way to learn anything. It was a privilege to work with a chef like Carmella who is extremely talented and passionate about her cooking. The walking tour with Gloria to the market and other vendors was a lesson in Italian cookery and history, and the coffee was superb during a brief break for coffee and pastries. The variety and quality of the meat and vegetables is what makes all the difference in the final product, i.e. the great meal we enjoyed at the end of the day. The farmhouse was the surprise of the day for me. The kitchen was beyond anything I could image and in such beautiful surroundings. I am so pleased by my day with Carmela, Gloria, Molly and all of the dedicated people who made this possible as well as the other very interesting guest participants!
I wouldn't hesitate to book another event with Walkabout, it was truly a memorable day. Thank you!
Ray from California
We were in Italy for 2 weeks and this was by far my favorite day out of the entire trip. Sandra and Lavinia sorry if I misspelled either of your names were our guides and they were both OUTSTANDING. You arrive to meeting location and then take a walking tour while collecting your ingredients. We were with Sandra and she was wonderful. We learned fun, quick information about the places we were walking by and when we were at the bakery to collect the bread we stopped for coffee and able to grab a pastry if we wanted. The Central Market was probably my favorite stop and wish I could've gone back on my own time but ran out of time in Florence. Once all ingredients are collected, you meet with the other group and get on the bus that takes you to the farmhouse. The guides explain itinerary to you and you never feel lost about the plan for the day at anytime. The farmhouse's kitchen is beautiful and the view it has is STUNNING. Carmella was our chef and she was great. Spoke a few words of English so our guides were the translators for us but you could always tell what Carmella was saying since she was so warm and welcoming. Our dinner was beyond my expectations. I cannot think of any improvements this day could have had. This tour was amazing and I would highly recommend to anyone going to Florence. I would do another trip with this company as well and could not speak higher of the women that were our hosts.
I took this tour with my 18 year old daughter and 73year old mother, what an amazing day we had!! He was exceeded our expectations. We had a lovely walking tour with Lynn to begin the day. She was very informative,charming and funny. It was great fun going to the market to buy our ingredients, in fact I would recommend going back to the indoor market if you have time because there is so much to see!!
There was a short bus ride to the farmhouse and then the fun really began. The chef Carmella is fantastic!! Talented and very funny!! We had a great time making Bruscetta, Ragu and pasta and later pizzas , a pork roast, tiramisu and gelato, all the while drinking copious amounts of Chianti!!! We learned so much and made some new friends too!! Our guides Lynn and Julian were wonderful! Cannot recommend this enough!! Best part of our Florence tour!!
Sue D United States of ...
Our family my husband, myself and our 2 kids-ages 14 and 16 just did this cooking class and we can't say enough great things about it. Our tour guides for the market tour were fabulous. They gave fascinating history as we walked to the market and an extremely interesting shopping experience at Market Centrale. They then became our translators and waitresses. Our time cooking with Carmella was a day we will always remember! Carmella was an excellent chef and teacher. She was great at getting everyone involved. My husband and our 16 year son, not usually into cooking, were totally into it. Lots of fun, laughter, learning and an abundance of delicious food. Our whole family agrees this day was a highlight in our 3 week Europe vacation. We highly recommend this tour.
I can't possibly overstate how amazing this tour was. It's more than worth the money and it really was the icing on our trip to Italy.
Val and Lavi were a joy - full of energy and knowledge. The morning started off with a walk through Florence with a history lesson on food and culture as we toured the markets and purchased food for the afternoon's meal - sure it covered less ground than a typical walking tour of the city since the tour was aimed at educating the participants on Florence's food, but it was better than any other tour we'd been on so far in the city.
Carmella's farmhouse and property were straight out of my dreams. The kitchen/instruction space was large enough to comfortably accommodate the moderate sized group, beautifully appointed and but as warm and inviting as any home kitchen I've ever had the pleasure of cooking in. Carmella was also a joy - full of energy, eager to answer our questions and to make sure everyone got a chance to participate. Not only was this the best Florence tour/class we took on our trip, but it was the best cooking class my husband and I have ever done. Lots of opportunities for hands-on participation including our individual own pasta- and pizza-making stations.
The food, fellowship and wine were just what we wanted and the amazing guides, cooks, views and experience were more than we could have every asked for. I'm telling ALL of my friends to put this tour at the top of their list when they visit Florence and I'll be back for sure!
Cannot recommend this enough. Lavinia was our guide and she shared so much wonderful info about Italian culture and food. Carmella the chef was so warm and welcoming and helped us perfect our pasta! It was so fun to get our food at the market and then cook with it. So authentic!
The Viator cooking class with Carmella, Elisa and Sandra was the best tour which I have ever, not only in Italy, but in many other countries. The class, I would say, the culinary school was designed wonderfully, which included the tour of beautiful Florence, experience with Italian products and terrific environment on the market and, of course, great educational and practical part on the farm.
Elisa and Sandra with terrific English, in the walking part of this class, showed us very interesting areas of Florence, explained significance of the city in the past and now, its development, history, architecture, religion, art and traditions. Their talk was much more educational and gave us much more understanding of the city than we got in 3 hours walking tour with another company. Elisa and Sandra were outstanding!
I cannot describe the class - it was a real education and a lot of practice, fun, talks, food, wine...Carmella is only One: terrific cook, dedicated teacher and very outgoing person. She enjoyed cooking and teaching and loved the students. For me and, as I noticed, for all group, it was a Real Holiday: Great Education combined with Outstanding Teachers Carmella, Elisa and Sandra, as well as great group of participants, beautiful Tuscany's surrounding, delicious food and wine, fun, joy and excitement. Memories of this day, skills and recipes which we got will be with us for the long time. I want to express, from the bottom of my heart, my great appreciation to Carmella, Sandra and Elisa and, of course, Viator for developing and organizing such a terrific tour. We are going to travel to Italy again in a few years. Elisa, Carmella and Sandra's class, will be again on our list of the best Florence's attractions! They and Viator are The Best!
I highly recommend this TERRIFIC Tour!
We booked the tour for four of us. We all feel that it was the best part of our vacation. The shopping for our ingredients at the local markets, stopping for coffee and the commentary as we went along about historical points we passed was great in itself, but then of course taking the bus out of the city to the lovely villa was even more special. I loved looking out the window seeing the city open up to cypress trees and lovely homes. The cooking experience with Carmela and her staff was very inviting. We all had a hand in the delicious dishes that Carmela expertly lead us through. So much food and wine and the setting so rich in all ways clearly was enhanced by our guide Julian. Julian was a delight as a guide, very clear and so well informed. His exuberant and engaging manner kept us attuned to all the treasures from the beginning of our tour to the very end. Gloria was the other delightful tour guide who brought her group and we all met at the farm house -- both groups of tourists became one big happy family. Joining the two,groups was great - the dynamics of these two leaders made for a fun-filled raucous afternoon! What a team, such positive energy that they passed on to all of us. I will strongly recommend this tour to anyone thinking of coming to Florence.
Thanks so much for such a valuable and memorable experience,
Irene, John Earl and Joanne Dawson
My wife and I fully enjoyed this wonderful cooking class. Molly our guide was extremely informative about the local cooking culture of Tuscany and fluent in Italian. The tour around town and the local food market was great and we went back the next day to have dinner.
The farm house setting was enjoyable and Carmella was full of energy and we both learned lots about Italian cooking. Everyone took part in an enjoyable afternoon, met lots nice people and drank lots of wine.
It was the highlight of 2 week vacation in Italy and a must if you enjoy cooking as we do.
Rocco J. Avellini
How do you communicate with an Italian woman, who does not speak English, when you don't speak Italian? You sign up for this fabulous cooking class and let the cooking and dining experience be the go-between.
We were enlightened by our bi-lingual guide, Molly, whose enthusiasm for life and Florence, seemed unbounded, as she led us through the streets of Florence to markets to pick up the ingredients for the courses to be prepared by us. Molly is bright, personable and loves her job, which is a real plus.
The villa and its vistas were breathtaking, and Carmela's kitchen set a standard for all of us to strive to attain. What an EXCEPTIONAL experience! Communal cooking, led by a gifted chef is a rare and beautiful thing, like the facade of Santa Maria del Fiore, or the eloquence of.John Coltrane's saxophone, or a Matisse, or watching the sunset on a tropical beach. Need I say more?
Thanks to Gloria, Julian, and the wonderful chef Carmella for making our experience in Florence a memorable one! From shopping in the marketplace to preparing the food to eating the food, the whole day was jam-packed with fun! It is fun to share the experience with other tourists, and to appreciate the Italian food we prepared with a glass or two of Chianti. I would recommend this lovely day for anyone wanting some local flavor! If I could only suggest one thing, it would be to spend more time throughout the cooking of the pasta instead of one of the desserts like the gelato. Thank you again for the wonderful experience!
This was a great tour. We were shown our the city in a small group before stopping at the market to buy our ingredients. The cooking class was fun and informative. The food was very good and plentiful.
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