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All reviews torre del tartufo chef franco the kitchen cooking vacation bucket list olive oil his assistant wonderful experience pizza great fun every meal four days experienced chef exceeded our expectations whole experience gelato amazing chef
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Reviewed August 21, 2015

Having been to this villa two years ago we had high expectations for our second visit. It delivered and then some......

It felt like we were returning home as Elani, Alex, Franco and Paola are the most welcoming hosts you could wish for. The place was just as beautiful if not more so! Our chef Franco is just a pleasure to be in the kitchen with, he is relaxed, funny and makes everyone feel at ease!

We had a perfect balance of relaxation, fun and learning. The excursion is a fantastic day out, especially the Olive oil farm ( Francesco is awesome). I will write a review for him next

With a holiday like this it is by dependent on the other guests and how you interact, and we were very lucky to have a fantastic group of people that have given us some amazing memories to bring home with us.

I would recommend this holiday in a heartbeat. You will not be disappointed!

Date of stay: July 2015
  • Trip type: Traveled as a couple
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Service
Thank pb008
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 20, 2015

I had the most wonderful week at the stunningly beautiful Torre del Tartufo in June 2015. Our group wanted for nothing throughout the week as we made ourselves home in the stunning surroundings. My room was very comfortable with a fantastic view, the management staff (Lena and Alex) were unbelievably helpful and the chef, Franco Palandra was simply the best. Imagine teaching 12 students with varying culinary skills the best of Italian cuisine. It was an honor to have his tuition for the week and enjoy the many different dishes he taught us. Many thanks to Paola who worked tirelessly along Franco to clean up as we cooked up a storm. It's hard to put in words the beauty of the gardens where Franco grows many of the ingredients we used to cook with from fresh fruit, herbs and vegetables, to the views and pool I was able to get some decent lap swimming in. Each and every meal was a delight with wine pairings and a fully stocked bar you could help yourself to at any time, I absolutely loved the entire experience. Thank you so much, all at Torre Del Tarufo for creating memories that will last a lifetime.

Date of stay: June 2015
  • Trip type: Traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Rooms
    • Service
Thank Tessa963
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 20, 2015

I went to Tuscookany at Torre del Tartufo with my mother. See that beautiful tower? Yea, my room was at the top of the tower...like the princess! :o) The entire time we were at the villa, we felt like we were in a movie. The staff is AMAZING!! They make you feel at home completely. The grounds of the villa and the pool are absolutely breathtaking. I was a little nervous about going to cooking school since I wasn't the most experienced chef. Well the chef, Franco, made me feel so comfortable. The cooking classes were soooooo helpful and FUN!!! I've even recreated some of the meals since being home and they are all doable!!! The wine is delicious (of course) and the company is even better. We had such a great time learning to cook, relaxing, exploring gorgeous Tuscany, and getting to know the other members at the villa. I HIGHLY recommend visiting Torre del Tartufo to couples, mother/daughter combos, and friends. I thought this was something I could check off my bucket list, but now I can't wait to go back!!!

Date of stay: June 2015
  • Trip type: Traveled with family
    • Location
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Thank Teri A
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 18, 2015 via mobile

The best by far cooking experience and live in I have ever tried. I'm a avid traveller and I came from Australia for 7 days to do this course and absolutely worth the distance, cost and jet lag ! Stunning stunning stunning.... A must in your life time

Date of stay: August 2015
Trip type: Traveled solo
Thank 154ginat
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 11, 2015

Absolutely The trip of a lifetime! We spent the week of 6/21-29, 2015 at Torre del Tartufo and from the fragrance of the lavender upon arrival to the wonderful cooking we created in the huge ktichen it was perfect. Being able to cook with a true chef - Franco Palandra - and his amazing kitchen crew was really a treat,
From learning tricks to make the perfect homemade tomato soup, to de-boning duck, and filleting sea bass, making pizza dough, and pasta dough, we touched on 43 recipes during the week. (The pots and pans magically were cleaned and put back in place as we cooked and cooked and cooked)
You will make wonderful friends from all over the world thrown together with the spice that indeed makes Italy a gastronomic festival. The side trips were well-organized and fun-and at first thinking that I'd miss a day (or actually 2 days) of cooking, instead it was a welcome respite.
You'll use the freshest ingredients and indeed go down to Franco's garden to gather everything from cherries, and squash blossoms, to the herbs that are just within reach in huge pots.
The villa is stunningly luxurious but in an Italian countryside way, rooms are spacious, linens are lovely, bathrooms very European and every night eating under the stars with pretty table settings by Paola makes you remember that using what is all around you enhances the food.
It is indeed remote and navigating the winding, steep, gravel road up to the villa is an experience in itself-we had to turn off the AC in the rental car to get up to the top. Another note, they do advise that you fly into Florence and take the train to Arrezzo (another place not to be missed) then take a taxi to the villa. My husband is convinced that's what we would do for another visit - no, he didn't cook - no your spouse or significant other doesn't have to - the view and the pool, the masseuse (Laura) all make for a relaxing day if they don't want to cook and just enjoy the open bar and plentiful wine.
Another hint; be sure to wear sturdy shoes, or heavy soled shoes - or just tennis shoes for the cooking, no open-toed sandals-you're on your feet for at least 4 hours on the cooking days-also, Franco does run his kitchen in a basic professional way-best to wear capris or pants to avoid the hot liquids that can boil over. Your friends may say that they 'went to a class in Tuscany' - you will truly learn at Tartufo (or at Casa Ombuto or Bellocia for that matter) and claim bragging rights since this is a REAL cooking school.
Your entire experience will be choreographed perfectly by Alex and Lena-they are caring, professional, wonderful, highly trained and attentive. They are so friendly and Lena makes the BEST breakfast cakes (lemon especially). Alex oversees both Tartufo and Casa Ombuto and Lena is fun to talk to and easygoing and re-assuring. They both share the history of Tartufo as well as hints to enjoy the Italian countryside and directions.
Be sure to ask Lena and Alex (and then commit) about planting an olive tree!

Room tip: Our room - Rosmaria - overlooked the gorgeous pool and hills to the rear and the pretty courtyard to the bathroom side
Date of stay: June 2015
  • Trip type: Traveled as a couple
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Service
3  Thank O4ADAYONTHEBEACH
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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