DISCOVERING VALLE D'ITRIA: AN EXPLOSION OF ART, CULTURE, COLOURS AND...FLAVOURS OF APULIA.
Spend an unforgettable week with nature in a magnificently restored 16th century Eco-label trulli farmhouse and spa masseria. Take some well deserved R&R surrounded by the rolling red Puglian hills just 6 km from Ostuni, a UNESCO protected world heritage site. Discover the secrets and recipes of Cucina Povera handed down from generation to generation and pick up expert top tips.
Visit an underground Roman olive oil mill and uncover why “liquid Gold” plays such an import role Puglia’s diet and culture. Taste and learn to pair local DOC and IGT wines with your favourite dishes under the instruction of a master Sommelier. Take a passeggiata through the winding narrow streets and eat “Bombette” in the wonderfully white Martina Franca. Travel through time to discover how and why Alberobello peasants first built trulli, taste the delicious “U tridd" and marvel at the bizarre circular town of Locorotondo.
Day 1 Arrival
We’ll pick you up and drive you through the rolling countryside littered with rustic trulli, giving you a snapshot of the Itria Valley’s stunning countryside and rural lifestyle on the way to your hotel, a traditional 16th century Masseria set amongst beautiful ancient olive groves.
Your rooms will be allocated on arrival and you’ll be free to explore the grounds and settle in, rest, take a dip in the pool or relax in the garden, with an aperitif, before sitting down to welcome dinner of organically grown, home-made food and wine prepared by a top local chef.
The Itria Valley package
6 nights, 7days
4 cooking class
4 walking tour
6 nights lodging in a traditional 16th century Masseria
Custom dates on request
Day 2 Ostuni-Market-cookery class
Ostuni is a delightfully exotic white hill town blending Greek, Middle Eastern and Baroque influences. Stroll through the winding ginnels visiting Palazzo’s and key sites and have a coffee in the main square. Check out the souvenirs from the resident artists before shopping for your afternoon cookery class in the local market. Lunch is served in an exceptional traditional trattoria before we return to the masseria for your first cooking lesson with our specialist chef, who’ll give you some top tips on menu planning and traditional local recipes in your introductory cookery lesson. Finish the day tasting the fruits of your labour.
Day 3 Alberobello-wine tasting
Visit the alluring Alberobello, nestled deep in the Itria Valley and home to the oldest Trulli in Puglia. During a 14th century peasant farmers built the easily demolishable trulli, with distinctive white walls and conical roofs, as temporary accommodation, in a bid to evade land taxes. This UNESCO World Heritage Site is home to a thriving community of bars and eateries, where we’ll stop to taste some local specialities after taking in the sites. Returning to the hotel you’ll have a couple of hours to rest and relax before dinner and an introduction to some of the area’s finest IGT and DOC wines produced by Tormaresca.
Day 4 Martina Franca-Locorotondo-Cookery class
Sleepy Martina Franca dominates the Itria Valley with its bizarre architecture, intricately decorated churches and piazzas. We’ll stroll the old town’s narrow winding streets, courtyards and churches. This area is famous for producing the best salami and Bombette, stuffed meat dishes, which we’ll be stopping off to taste, together with some Martina Franca DOC wines in Locorotondo. Lunch will include “U tridd”, homemade pasta cooked in a turkey broth, before taking a passeggiate around the curved streets to admire the hilltop view. In your second evening cooking class you’ll learn to prepare a range of vegetable based antipasti dishes.
Day 5 Soap making and Pamper day
Mediterranean countries have been making soap from olive oil for over a millennium, primarily as a way to avoid wasting lesser grade olive oil and later as a refined art using the finest oil and freshest herbs. You’ll participate in the ancient art of making organic herb infused soap in Anita’s 90 minute workshop. The rest of your day is about winding down, relaxing and taking it easy in the masseria’s magnificent garden with luxury outdoor pool and jacuzzi. For those in need of some special pampering and luxury, place yourself in the hands of our professional masseur, before dinner.
Day 6 Olive oil tasting-Cooking lesson
The olive tree is the symbolic essence of the Mediterranean region and its oil a dietary staple. On this informative tour, set amongst the magnificent ancient olive groves, you’ll see the underground mill and learn how production process influences the taste, colour and fluidity of olive oil, before participating in a guided tasting to discover some of the subtler variations of olive oil.Returning to the masseria you’ll have your final seafood cooking lesson and opportunity to try out and taste some traditional, yet easily replicable recipes, guaranteed to dazzle your dinner guests when you return home.
Day 7 Departure
We’ll take you to the airport in good time for your return flight and bid you farewell but not before ensuring that you have had a delicious and substantial breakfast.