When we think of Italian wine regions, most often, we think about Tuscany and Piedmont but instead, this boot-shaped country has so much varied landscapes and oenological culture to discover. One of the least-known regions but with outstanding wines is Campania, the region of Naples where the tradition of gastronomy is supremely important.
It’s a volcanic territory where the mighty Mount Vesuvius reigns but little do we know that there’s a super volcano sleeping quietly very close to it, underneath the ground, sandwiching Naples in between. The locals are actually living on top of the underground volcano! Referred to as a super volcano, Campi Flegrei or Phlegraean Fields in English (also known as burning fields), is comprised of 24 craters and edifices, many of which are underwater in Pozzouli Bay. Rocks, pozzolans and lapilli born from fire are scattered about which make the soil for viticulture extremely special. The wines are born with great personalities, imprinted with deep expressions of minerality, marked salinity and bright acidity influenced by the composition of the soil where they are planted. The white variety Falanghina and the red variety Piedirosso express excellently in this territory.
Then there are the 10 to 20-meter high old vines of Asprinio d’Aversa. These are vines climbing around tall poplars or elm trees which act as guardians. On their full vegetative cycle, you find yourself in-between tall green walls of grapevines with treetops poking out like at regular intervals. The wines produced from Aprinio d’Aversa has its own peculiarity with its crispy acidity and refreshingly dry character giving out aromas of white jasmine and fresh herbs.
Campania has lot of indigenous grapes that thrive well in its characteristic soils. Coda di Volpe, Coda di Pecora, Casavecchia, Falanghina, Biancolella, Greco, Fiano, Aglianico, Piedirosso, and more. These are excellent wines to drink and when they are aged, they evolve deeper with beautiful complexity, but they are not as diffused outside the region as we would want them to be. This is a great reason to see and taste Campania on your next visit!
Participants will be housed in the remarkably well-preserved Umbrian hill town of Monte Castello di Vibio. Your workshop package is all-inclusive, providing welcome and departure services and airport transfer from the Rome Fiumicino, Leonardo Da Vinci Airport (FCO). Aboard our comfortable private bus, single occupancy accommodations with shared bath (a wide range of upgrades with private bath are available), 3 meals per day Monday-Thursday, Prosecco brunch and dinner on Saturday and Sunday (no meals are served on Friday, our excursion day. Your workshop includes one excursion per week and many additional options are available on weekends for an additional fee. Of course, 24/7 access to facilities and 24/7 bi-lingual support are provided.
Autochthonous refers to a variety of grape from a specific terroir. In other words, a particular type of grape adapted to a specific soil and geography, as well as to tradition. Italy is one of the countries with the most autochthonous grapes in the world - and there are 545 registered varieties for making wine! Each one has its distinguishing quality and story. The Italian producers have started to revive these vines, some of which were almost extinct, and produce wines from them, just like the old times.
In this workshop, we will learn about some of these grapes, and their traditions – we will taste the wines, and meet the producers who make them. Printouts will be handed to help facilitate learning during lessons, wine will be tasted and there will be visits to wineries. Let’s dive into the wine world of Italy and see and taste why this country is so special!
Additionally, our workshop dates coincide with the annual Cantine Aperte festival, which is one of the most important wine events of the year! At the festival, the seasons new wines are unveiled and vineyards open their doors to all who are eager to taste the new vintage. It is the good fortune of this workshop that the event falls of the first day of our activities – and we will attend the event! It is an amazing celebration and will be a great way to kick off the workshop.
Throughout the week-long experience, participants will be housed in the remarkably well-preserved Umbrian hill town of Monte Castello di Vibio. The workshop package is all-inclusive, providing welcome and departure services and airport transfer from the Rome Fiumicino, Leonardo daVinci Airport (FCO). Aboard our comfortable private bus, single occupancy accommodations with spectacular views, 3 meals per day Monday-Thursday, Prosecco brunch and dinner on Saturday.
The workshop includes daily tastings and winery visits as well as lunch at a Michelin-recommended restaurant, Il Frantoio, in Assisi and other meals at noteworthy vineyards. Finally, our “off-campus” meals will include a dinner at the renowned Torre a Cona vineyard, where we will be treated to a tasting of their wines and an extraordinary 6-course dinner!
Of course, throughout your stay, 24/7 access to facilities and 24/7 bi-lingual support are provided.
Those who have time might also consider the adding the additional 4-day tour: Little-known Wines of Campania, June 4 – 7, which will commence at the end of this workshop.
Sketching a Pig is a hands-on exploration of traditional butchery and charcuterie methods, flavors, and foodways of central Italy, centered around the full utilization of the animal - nose to tail!
During the 10-day workshop, participants will delve into traditional processes and recipes of the region, tasting everything along the way. Group leaders Nathan Colello Gilmour and Rece Hogerheide will impart authentic stories of food, time, and place of the region of Umbria and in particular, the village of Monte Castello di Vibio – certainly with a few secrets thrown in around the cookfire.
Instruction will focus around creating a personal sketchbook (hence, “Sketching a Pig”) for note taking, drawing and diagram-making, recording recipes and procedures, observations, and ideas. As a result, participants will create a “living” learning object that forms a record of the experience. For those not skilled, trained in drawing or who may not yet feel comfortable with pencil in hand, rest assured, the idea is to create a hand-made record that will have value to you as a note book and record of the experience - a kind of “cookbook of Umbrian salumi.” We propose to exhibit these “cookbooks” in our Bocca al Lupo Gallery, along with samples of our production in a gallery reception before our final meal.
Participants should be ready to assist in the butchering of a thoughtfully sourced pig and wild boar as well as with many traditional preparations that come with the early spring harvest. Additionally, there will be two off-site excursions: one to a local weekly market for supplies (and the experience), and the other to the renowned Italian charcuterie capital, Norcia, where since the middle ages (and before), the legendary local butchers – the Norcino – became inseparably a part of Italian food culture (so much so, that even today, butchers in Italy are referred to by the name “Norcino” and butcher shops sometimes as “Norceria” ).
During your stay, you will be housed in the remarkably well-preserved Umbrian hill town of Monte Castello di Vibio. Your workshop package is all-inclusive, providing welcome and departure services and airport transfer from the Rome Fiumicino, Leonardo Da Vinci Airport (FCO) aboard our comfortable private bus. Also included in the course fee are single occupancy accommodations with shared bath (a wide range of upgrades with private bath are available), 3 meals per day Monday-Thursday, Prosecco brunch and dinner on Saturday and Sunday (no meals are served on Friday, our excursion day. Your workshop includes one excursion per week and many additional options are available on weekends for an additional fee. Of course, 24/7 access to facilities and 24/7 bi-lingual support are provided.
All materials and fees for the course are included, except international airfare and meals on excursion days unless otherwise stated. Course fee also includes a high quality butcher knife, apron, and sketchbook.
In collaboration with the Italian sommelier association - Assosommelier - and renowned connoisseur, sommelier, and master-taster, Antonio Andreani, the International Center for the Arts is proud to offer its 2023 Sommelier Certification course options at our facility in Monte Castello di Vibio, Umbria, Italy.
Italy is the world’s top wine producer and thus the perfect place to enrich your enjoyment of wine. Here, you will immerse yourself in the rich history of Italian wine, experience its diversity, and celebrate its connection to some of the most amazing foods in the world! Our courses are designed for individuals all levels of experience – the only prerequisite being a passion for learning about the rich traditions and incredible varieties of Italian wine!
The program is all inclusive with accommodation provided in our beautifully preserved 14 th c., medieval hill town. We provide Welcome and Departure services at the Rome/Fiumicino, Leonardo da Vinci International (FCO) airport as well as airport transfer by private bus. Using locally sourced and artisanal ingredients, three traditional meals are lovingly prepared by our kitchen staff and chef Federico Monday through Thursday. On Fridays our private bus will transport participants on two excursions: the first to the fabulous city of Florence and the second to Orvieto, which boasts one of the most beautiful cathedrals in Italy. Saturdays and Sundays, we provide an incredible brunch with fresh baked bread and pastries, a variety of eggs, cheeses, and cured meats, as well as fresh yogurt and fruit. Of course, all accompanied by terrific, chilled Prosecco! Saturday and Sunday dinner are also grill-day’s and we will enjoy savory grilled meats (including wild game), fresh vegetables, and more! All lunches and dinners are accompanied by local wine, wines from our extensive Wine List available for purchase. Our bi-lingual staff is on hand 24/7 to fill your needs.
Our approach will be both fun and informative. Paired with delicious foods from our kitchen and the spectacular views from our dining terrace - the course will provide everyone the opportunity to fully experience the richness and beauty of the Umbrian landscape as well as the excellence of its culinary and viticultural traditions. We will make good use of our central location in Italy to visit both renowned Umbrian vineyards as well as to the Chianti Classico, Montepulciano, and Brunello di Montalcino wine regions of Tuscany.
Throughout the course, our excursions will be combined with lectures and an in-depth introduction to the wines of Italy in general. We will provide tastings of many of the great Italian wines, with some interesting and surprising little-known wines as well.
All participants successfully completing the course will receive a certification of “Wine Taster” through Assosommelier. For professionals, the certification will not only reflect the technical knowledge that they have gained, but also provide the opportunity to continue to other levels of Sommelier training. For those with a general interest, the focus of the “Wine Taster” certification is ideal. participants undergo the same training as those in the “Level 1 Sommelier Course,” but do not need to take the requisite exams. It is the first step for those who want in-depth knowledge and a strong base for understanding wine at a high level of quality. Course on topics such as food pairing, appropriate serving and storage conditions, and the introduction to new types of wine will be invaluable in enriching the experience of the wines and culinary traditions of Italy.
While participating in the course, those interested can also earn a Level 1 Sommelier Certification, which is available in collaboration with Assosommelier by taking the requisite exams (during the workshop) offered through the Universita di Perugia di Sapori. (The latter requires additional coursework while in Monte Castello as well as an additional fee.) Level 1 Sommelier Certification is well-suited to the needs of food service professionals who want to expand their knowledge of wine in technical ways that will provide a step-stone to full Sommelier certification and careers related to wine.
For all participants, the course will focus on:
1. Providing a general knowledge about wine: history, terminology, production, aging, etc.
– focusing on wines of Italy
2. Technical tasting skills to both evaluate and enhance the enjoyment of wine
3. An introduction to types of wines and food pairing
4. The course will also provide an introduction to Beer (particularly exploring the emerging
micro brewing culture of Italy) and Spirits, focusing on aperitivi and drinks such as
5. Regulations governing the production, distribution, storage, and sales of wine.
Utilizing our kitchen here at the International Center for the Arts facility in Monte Castello and enlisting the aid of our fantastic chef Federico, we will also explore culinary traditions of Umbria and Italy as a whole, giving us the opportunity to examine the role of wine in:
Jerry Pellegrino leads this extraordinary retreat and cultural/culinary immersion and centered in in the region of Umbria, in central Italy. The retreat offers an opportunity to experience some of the most famous culinary and wine traditions of Italy. We will travel to where the most famous foods and wines are produced, while centered in a 16th c. villa in the hills outside of the beautiful and serene village of Monte Castello di Vibio. In this idyllic environment, guests will prepare dishes with the master chef that will be accompanied by his choice from some of the finest wines in the world.
The interplay between food and wine fascinates Chef Pellegrino, and Italy is the ideal environment in which to explore this relationship. His own cuisine is simple and surprising, pairing unexpected ingredients that work together with wine lists at all his restaurants. Participants will be swept up in Chef Pellegrino's passion for food and wine while immersed in a landscape of farms, fields, and vineyards that produce some of the finest ingredients in the world.
Pellegrino’s understanding of this interplay begins at a molecular level and is a direct result of his Doctoral work in molecular biology at Johns Hopkins University. This background, makes him the perfect guide to the foods and wines of Italy, offering insights into the chemical processes that occur in traditional preparations, honed over generations and yielding the world-renowned flavors of Italian breads, cheeses, cured meats, and wines.
The retreat is accommodated at Villa le tre Grazie, built in the 16th century. The Villa sits on 2.1 hectares of privacy that includes an olive orchard, a fruit orchard, and gardens with a 12x6m swimming pool and bath house. WiFi available in house and garden.
The villa itself occupies 1000 sq m with 26 rooms which include 9 bedrooms, each with its own distinctive view, and 6.5 baths. It is furnished for comfort without sacrificing style. The two grand salons, formal dining room and billiard room feature high frescoed ceilings and large stone fireplaces. The villa was recently renovated with modern conveniences while retaining its traditional composition to offer you an authentic experience without sacrificing comfort. The private frescoed chapel offer opportunities for quiet contemplation.
A fully equipped professional kitchen and outdoor brick oven will facilitate class activities as well as dining al fresco during the day and on warm evenings.
While in Umbria, the group will tour vineyards, olive orchards, cheese making facilities, and a wide range of producers of traditional charcuterie. In addition, the group will visit a number of cultural sites in Umbria, including the church of San Francesco in Assisi, one of the most renowned cathedrals in Italy, as well as natural sites, such as Marmore Falls, called by British poet, Lord Byron, “the most beautiful waterfall in Europe.”
Additionally, the group will visit the neighboring region of Tuscany and Emilia-Romagna in order to sample and explore the production of the famous traditional products: Prosciutto di Parma, Parmigiano Reggiano, Aceto Balsamico di Modena, as well as the great wines of the Chianti zone in Tuscany and those of Montepulciano and Montalcino, including Brunello, one of the “kings of Italian wine.”
A deep dive into the foodways, arts and culture of Umbria through hands-on learning, creation and curated experiences. Hosted and led by Nathan Colello Gilmour (Ragazzo Foods) at the International Center for the Arts in Monte di Vibio, Umbria. Program conceptualized and created by Chef Jason Osburn (Felony Provisions) and Nathan Gilmour.
Lead by Jerry Pellegrino, the chef/owner of Schola Cooking School in Baltimore, Maryland. The pleasures of wine fascinates Chef Pellegrino, as it is always paired beautifully with his cuisine. He will lead a lucky few on an intensive exploration of Umbrian wine, visiting 13 vineyards throughout the region.
He is currently the co-owner of Schola, a private cooking school, located in the heart of Baltimore’s historic Mt. Vernon district. He and his partner, Chef Amy von Lange, teach hands-on classes to a variety of students covering a vast curriculum. For 15 years, Chef Pellegrino has served as the Vice Chancellor Culinaire of the Baltimore Bailliage of the Chaîne des Rôtisseurs, certified by the Court of Master Sommeliers and often featured in cooking segments on local television. He is the co-host of the long running radio show on NPR 88.1FM, WYPR’s “Radio Kitchen”. He has been nominated various years as Chef of the Year, awarded by Baltimore’s Academy of Travel, Tourism and Hospitality and was named One of Maryland’s 50 Most Influential People in 2017. For a full list of awards and honors, head to www.scholacooks.com or download his full bio.
Chance Morgan is the founder and owner of the Native Meat Company. An accomplished chef, he began producing his artisanal meats because of an interest in utilizing regionally raised animals and exploring traditional preparations in curing and smoking meats. A renowned craftsman in this practice, his production has been compared to the finest European cured meats. On the other hand, his knowledge of American traditions, such as boudin and andouille sausage making, is equally acknowledged. These factors make Chance the ideal guide with whom to explore the world of Italian – and Umbrian - Salumi, in its extraordinary diversity and sophistication. Participants in the course will make a variety of whole-meat, as well as chopped meat types and methods, beginning with butchering the whole animal (both wild boar and domestic pigs) to curing and preserving and aging the meats. The group will travel along with the Food and Wine Tour to Florence and to Norcia in order to experience Tuscan traditions as well as the “Mecca” of cured meats from which Italian “norcini” (butchers) get their name.
Join Pastry Chef Travis Marley as we explore Italian food and culture, then venture back into the kitchen to create classic Italian desserts.
For more information, contact us.
Lead by Jerry Pellegrino, the chef/owner of Schola Cooking School in Baltimore, Maryland. The interplay between food and wine fascinates Chef Pellegrino, with his understanding of the two at the molecular level a direct result of his Doctoral work in molecular biology at Johns Hopkins University. His cuisine is simple and surprising, pairing unexpected ingredients that worked together with wine lists at all his restaurants; where diners could be swept up in Chef Pellegrino's passion for food and wine and discover the distinctiveness of ingredients and the way they work together. He is currently the co-owner of Schola, a private cooking school, located in the heart of Baltimore’s historic Mt. Vernon district. He and his partner, Chef Amy von Lange, teach hands-on classes to a variety of students covering a vast curriculum. For 15 years, Chef Pellegrino has served as the Vice Chancellor Culinaire of the Baltimore Bailliage of the Chaîne des Rôtisseurs, certified by the Court of Master Sommeliers and often featured in cooking segments on local television. He is the co-host of the long running radio show on NPR 88.1FM, WYPR’s “Radio Kitchen”. He has been nominated various years as Chef of the Year, awarded by Baltimore’s Academy of Travel, Tourism and Hospitality and was named One of Maryland’s 50 Most Influential People in 2017. For a full list of awards and honors, head to www.scholacooks.com.
For more information, contact us.
June 4 – June 14, 2020
June 26 – July 12, 2020