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What an excellent experience! Cooking with Chef Giovanni and Lucca was fantastic. After a trip to the outdoor market featuring Sicilian vegetables, fish, and meats. We baked the bread for the Ristorante Porta Messina. Then we cooked swordfish rolls, baked a fish under salt, made homemade macaroni and sauce Norma and eggplant parmesan. Eating all that we created was certainly satisfying. I must say it was delicious! Wish I could have eaten more. Sadly we did not take away what was left. What were we thinking!?Highly suggest this tour. It was enjoyable and informative. And did I say FUN.
Perfect format for this class! Love going to the market and hearing about the indigenous foods and where they come from. Learning how to make pasta was great and something I take home to my own kitchen! Really appreciate the family heritage of the Nettuno restaurant where the food was prepared... and the meal was delicious in the end!
This was outstanding! Excellent chef who gave us wonderful instructions. The walk to the market, learning the cooking techniques and of course, eating!! Yum! Don't change a thing!! So wish we could go back and do it all again. This was a highlight of our 3 weeks in Italy and Sicily, and this was by far the very best tour.
Wow what an experience! Nima met us in town to go to the local market. He taught us how to choose the freshest vegetables and fish. After purchasing the things we were going to cook, we went back to the kitchen/restaurant where his mother guided us on how to make fresh pasta, fresh tomato sauce, grill the fish and make eggplant caponata. We then sat down to eat this delicious meal. We would absolutely do this again!
Taormina is a must visit township when one is in Sicily. An absolute gem with lots to see and do. Built on a cliff with a cable car down to the beach, the town offers a main street with many shops, markets, and great places to eat. A bus ride from Taormina Hop On/Hop Off up to the higher elevation of Castle Mola is strongly recommended, where one can have lunch while taking in the view of Mt. Etna and the surrounding mountain sides.
The Cooking Class held in the center of Taormina was a fabulous experience and great value. Our chef met us at the Messina Gate, the main portal to the shopping main street, and took a mixed group of about 12 people shopping in the local market. There we selected fresh fish and vegetables, mixed with the locals, and sampled wine and cheeses and got to know our class mates, a mix of Australians, Norwegians, Brits, and Americans.
In the center of Taormina, is the family restaurant where our cooking class was held. We were taught by the family how to make pasta from scratch, prepare appetizers Sicilian style, roll and stuff fish, etc. at individual work stations in an open terrace setting. After cooking the meals we all settled down to eat a delicious multi course meal with wine. The experience lasted some 5 hours, and each person was presented with a Certificate of Completion and an Apron.
The class was certainly a main highlight of our trip to Italy/Sicily, and strongly recommended as a must do activity.
Maurice and Diane T
It was so commercial and not worth the money invested.
The cooking instructor guys, Luca and Stefano, were great but almost everything was pre-cooked and we were only required to do some minimal tasks. Not sure whether I have learnt anything.
On a more positive note, it was nice to meet people from all over the world and do a little bit of socializing.
I'm a good cook, so I was expecting more. The market visit was okay, but more time should have been allocated to making the pasta. As we were all going to eat whatever was made, it meant that if the majority of the group made lousy pasta, we would be eating lousy pasta and so it was. The caponata was actually the one thing that I enjoyed learning to make, and will likely make again. Italians seem to overcook their proteins so the tuna was uneventful. Also the description of the tour said that we would get an apron, which I assumed would be a souvenir apron of the restaurant with logo, it was never given. I was offered the used apron that I wore in the class to cook with, or a paper apron. Very disappointing.
While the tour to the market from Mimmo was wonderful we were disappointed with the actual cooking demonstration. There were only three of us in this class so we should have gotten much more attention but I felt that because it was such a small class that they did not need to make such a big effort and hurried us along. The chef, Francesca,who didnt speak any english seemed to do more scolding then teaching. We learned how to make caponata, a baked fish, tomatoe sauce and pasta. While the caponata was wonderful the fish was basic and tomatoe sauce was nothing but smashed tomatoes in a pot, again very basic and not what was posted in the overview on viator. We were promised the recipes but they never arrived in our email. It was disappointing and could have been much better.