abruzzo tours, cooking school, culinary classes, abruzzo specialty

Explore this marvellous region in Italy named Abruzzo. Abruzzo wines will amaze you with their body, Abruzzo food will surprise you with its bold flavours, Abruzzo extra virgin olive oil will impress you for its sweetness and smoothness. This region will also astonish you for its hospitality, the old fashioned artisans products and much more. Abruzzo has the largest natural park in Europe. The region is green and untouched. It’s a real shame that this region is not famous or it does not get the credit but we also like the non touristic feel that our guests get when they come to visit us. When people come to Abruzzo, feel that they have discovered a gem. They are so surprised about the beauty of the villages and the goodness of the food. After two days that they are here, a common phrase for them to say is : “Now this, is real Italy!”. That is off course after spending a couple of days in Rome, Naples or Florence. So, in a way, we like the fact that Abruzzo is not popular, but we do not like that is so unpopular. Our goals is to show people how great Abruzzo is and maybe they can tell others about it. In our opinion, the best way to discover a region is through food. That is why we created the Abruzzo Cibus Culinary Tours. Cibus in latin means food. We enjoy talking about behaviours of Abruzzo people and their stories while we prepare a succulent pasta sauce, maybe paired with a good Montepulciano wine. After the leisure lunch, we like to take our friends out and show them the most interesting spots in the area. All in a comfortable way, going at a nice pace, without rushing. After all, it is a vacation. We like to underline the concept that we are not a tour operator or a travel agency. It’s just like a big family. Abruzzo cibus offers free airport pick up, when available.

cooking tour

Night Morning Afternoon
 

 
Here are some quick highlights:
- Free airport pick up and drop off
- Accomodation at the top of the line Palazzo Tour d’Eau
- All meals are either at the Palazzo or sampling other special restaurants
- Guided tours to artisan cheese manufactury or salami makers
- Abruzzo Cooking classes held at the palazzo, in a modern kitchen where everyone has their own workstation.
- All cookery courses are hands on and everybody is involved.
- Simple recipes that you can make again back home.
- Fun and friendly atmosphere
- Always small groups of maximum of 8 people.
- Free gifts such as apron, recipe book and more.
 

Your Abruzzo Culinary Tours experience

can be customized to fit your group's needs.

 

 Click to see a short video

Useful links about Abruzzo:

http://www.abruzzotoday.com

Italy Tourism

Tourists explore Italy just to see the famous museums and churches, the ancient ruins and renaissance art. Italy is loaded with historical events where one can almost see the gladiators and jeering crowds in the Colosseum and hear the Roman soldiers riding across the mountains. Nowadays Rome and Naples are big chaotic metropolis that have somehow managed to keep the old and mix it with the new, somehow building next to the baroque Trevi fountain, Piazza Navona, and even the Pantheon.

Spots where Roman Emperors once stood are now zipped through on scooters and motorcycles. It’s all quite breathtaking and exciting! So what do you do when you’ve already visited the most famous places? You’ve already travelled around Rome, rode the gondolas in Venice, and visited museums under the Tuscan sun in Florence. You’ve already been shopping in Milan for designer labels, been blessed at the Vatican and watched the Leaning Tower of Pisa in Tuscany. A true Italy fanatic might feel the need to go as far as Cinque Terre or the Amalfi Coast, where the colors around you come right out of a famous painting. There are also the Italian islands – Sicily, Capri, Eolie, Elba, Sardegna and many others. For a medieval thrill, most of the visitors to Italy head to Tuscany and visit Siena, San Gimignano and Cortona. But travelling in Italy other than Tuscany is possible. Heading toward the Adriatic coast, one might stop in Bologna and then go to lie on a crowded beach in Rimini. But there are other parts of Italy that aren’t so well known yet, like the great region of Abruzzo. Abruzzo Cibus Culinary Tours gives you the perfect guide to discovering Abruzzo.

Abruzzo Tourism

One of the most rugged parts of Italy is the region of Abruzzo and its little neighbor Molise. Because of the large area of mountainous terrain, including the highest points of the Central Appennine mountain range, Abruzzo has been quite isolated from the rest of Italy for centuries. This physical isolation has preserved most of the traditions, cuisine, and handicrafts of the locals. Handmade ceramics in Castelli have been famous since the Etruscan times and centuries later the ceramics are still exquisite, making perfect souvenirs. Similarly, Bussi sul Tirino is also a haven for handmade ceramic production. Abruzzo, in specific Piana di Navelli is known for its saffron, grown in the plateau of the Aterno. For centuries, sheep breeding has been a main livelihood, accounting for the famous Tratturi all over the area. Along each Tratturo leading from the mountains down to the Adriatic sea and back, there are lovely villages where each family still makes their own cheeses made from sheep’s milk. Guided tours are the best way to discover Abruzzo hot spots.

Abruzzo Tours

Touring and exploring Abruzzo can be quite an adventure if done alone. It can be done, by all means. Abruzzo is not a jungle. But if you have a competent guide, it can be so much more fun and relaxing. There are a few companies, tour operators and more that offer tours in Abruzzo. But we feel that we have put together a complete tour, where people can enjoy Abruzzo as whole. In other words, Abruzzo has beautiful beaches, Abruzzo has fantastic mountains that are great for skiing in the winter and cool to hike in the summer and spring. Abruzzo has great lakes and most of all, it has 305 towns to be discovered. Every town has something special to boast.

Visiting Abruzzo
Abruzzo Travel:

The region of Abruzzo is made up of 4 provinces: Chieti, Pescara, Teramo and l'Aquila. Every province has a capital city or comune. Abruzzo has 305 city halls.

The province of Chieti stretches along the Adriatic coastline from Pescara to the Molise border, with numerous wide clean beaches, all of which have received the all exclusive Blue Flag eco-label award for cleanliness and safe bathing areas. Vasto is the one that has received 9 in a row. Eventhough this province faces the sea, it is a mainly agricultural province producing grains, rich in vineyards, olive groves and fruit trees (especially in the hills along the coast between Chieti and Vasto.

Some other interesting and fun sights to visit in Abruzzo are Lanciano with its Eucharistic miracle (the sanctuary where host was turned to real flesh and wine turned into blood during a holy mass in the 8th century A.D. in front of witnesses), Guardiagrele with all its architectural beauty and artistic use of natural resources and the famous pastry “sise delle monache” (i.e. rock from the Majella mountain), Pescasseroli for great hike trails on well-defined paths and horseback riding in the mountains, Schiavi d’abruzzo with its archaeological ruins of Italic Temples (Templi Italici) from the II century b.C. and other finds from roman, pre-roman and medieval times, and Crognaleto with its famous Madonna di Tibia.

There are also a number of fishing ports with their famous Trabocchi in Francavilla, Ortona, Vasto, Rocca San Giovanni and San Vito.

Abruzzo Tours: Check out our Abruzzo travel guide that we offer and our 2009 itinerary. Write us about the 2009 prices and also enquire about reservations for 2010. We offer a special discount for advanced booking. Abruzzo is affordable and not expensive. Plus Abruzzo has many low cost airlines, such as Ryan air that fly in to the Pescara airport.

Culinary traditions in Abruzzo and Molise:

A lot of foods have been perfected in Abruzzo. Confetti are made all over Italy, but the confetti from Sulmona and Agnone are famous all over the world. Agnone is also famous for its production of excellent Mozzarella and Cacio cavallo dop, ricotta and a variety of other specialty cheese. Their top specialty is the smoked Cacio cavallo. This is a sharp cheese that is aged for the right amount of time -- around 4-5 months. It also has a funny shape.

A food & wine tour in this area covers everything from gourmet seafood to homemade caciocavallo cheese. Many of the inlanders (who only live about 20 minutes from the sea by car) to this day prefer their Ventricina salami over seafood. In Vasto one must try the local fish soup called Brodetto alla Vastese, made with the seafood and fish available at the time and often served on large slices of crunchy bruschetta. Very hard to eat but super flavorfulAn age-old tradition in Abruzzo is the Panarda, which is a food feast with over 30 courses that lasts all night until sunrise.

There's never enough time to see everything in Italy. What's important is that the quality of your visit remains a good memory forever, and that you take nostalgia for Italian life home with you.

Abruzzo Cheeses
Amongst the many varieties of pecorino cheese, cheese from the village of Farindola merits a special mention. The village is located on the slopes of the Gran Sasso, not far from Penne and Loreto Aprutino. It is a very strong type of pecorino born with the help of rennet taken from a pig’s stomach cut into strips and then “bottled” with red wine. Although now a rarity, salamis in the Abruzzi are made not only from pork but also from sheep. One of the areas where this tradition survives is Anversa degli Abruzzi, a small village located between the Parco Nazionale di Abruzzo and the Parco Nazionale della Maiella, near Scanno.

Soft Pecorino: A sheep’s milk cheese. Aged for a few days. Soft and easy to cut.

Hard pecorino: A sheep’s milk cheese. Aged for at least 6 months up to two years. Hard cheese, not very easy to cut but perfect for grating, with a sharp and pungent flavour.

Cacio cavallo or caciocavallo: The Italian name of the cheese caciocavallo means "Cheese on horseback". The name comes from the fact that the curd is left to dry by placing it 'a cavallo', i.e. straddling, upon a horizontal stick. This cheese is shaped like a tear-drop or a hanging man and is similar in taste to aged provolone. It is very popular also in the nearby region of Molise, especially in the town of Agnone.

Caciotta d’Abruzzo: Cow’s milk or sheep’s milk or a combination of the two. Aged for just for less than a month. It’s a soft cheese and it is a common one. Very easy to match to any kind of food.

Scamorza: An excellent cheese for baking or stuffing or pizza topping. Belongs to the mozzarella family. It is a plastic curd cheese. It’s a fresh cheese and the shelf life is about 4-5 days.

Scamorza affumicata: Smoked scamorza. See above description. It’s a great cheese for people looking for a mild smoked flavoured cheese.

Caciottina al tartufo: Small caciotta, with shredded truffle inside

Caciotta al peperoncino: Cheese with shredded dry peperoncino inside. Not very spicy.

Abruzzo Cured Meats

Salame and sausage in Abruzzo are still made by family members or local butchers, which means that you never get processed meats, colorings, or preservatives in them. Every butcher in L’aquila has their own special recipe for Fegato Dolce, known as fegatazzo. Other special rarities are Mortadella or mortadelline di Campotosto, Coppa di Campobasso, Fiaschetta Aquilana, and Prosciutto di Basciano. More diffused are the Cacciatorini DOP (Small seasoned sausages), Fegato Pazzo, Lonza, Salame di Pecora, Soppressata, Ventricina and last but not least, Porchetta, which is eaten at the end of every Italian wedding as a sign of wealth and plenty (although most guests cannot eat another bite at the end of an Italian wedding)! We believe that cooking classes should be part of every culinary vacation. Our all-inclusive active holidays give you the opportunity to experience the Italy that’s not in the guidebooks. Besides its ancient history and famous art, Italy isn’t Italy without its special foods and wines. But there’s much more to Italian food that pizza and pasta. Travel with a guided tour means that you don’t end up in the touristy restaurant that never represent real Cucina Italiana anyway. Whether the traveller wants to visit small Abruzzese villages like Gessopalena or Santo Stefano di Sessanio, Rocca Calascio or just have a half a day or one day cooking class, or to be immersed in the uniquel cuisine that defines this region with a 7-day cookery holiday with many lessons, we offer customized tours and welcome you to enjoy the real Italian life.

Abruzzo Wines

Wines from Italy are famous all over the world for their simple heartiness and uncomplicated perfection. The Abruzzi area has been noted in history for its viniculture as far back as the 7th century b.C. Throughout history, noted poets and storytellers have written about wines in Abruzzo and when the Medici family lost their hold in Abruzzo in the mid eighteenth century they left behind a well organized production of Montepulciano d’Abruzzo and Trebbiano d’Abruzzo, along with the Tuscan wine Sangiovese. Montepulciano d’Abruzzo is now one of Italy’s most popular red wine. These vines are also used for the production of Cerasuolo (rosè wine). One of Italy’s best white wines, Trebbiano d’Abruzzo is dry and aromatic, perfect with local seafood dishes. Other up and coming wines from the area is the Pecorino wine. It’s important to also taste the homemade liqueurs like Limoncello or Genziana. The lemons grown along the coast in southern Abruzzo and Molise make some of the best Lemoncello in the country. Several other delicious after-dinner liqueurs are produced in Abruzzo like Ratafia, Genziana, and more. There are many wineries spread throughout Abruzzo, and as a matter of fact Abruzzo has one of the largest amount of wineries per capita. These are the typical Abruzzo vineyards:

  • Montepulciano d’Abruzzo (red wine)

  • Trebbiano d’Abruzzo (white wine)

  • Pecorino (white wine)

  • Cerasuolo d’Abruzzo (rosè wine)

Abruzzo Liqueurs
  • Limoncello or lemoncello (very commonly used but not originally from Abruzzo)

  • Centerba: it means “100 herbs”. It is made of a mixture of many herbs, it has a green color and it is known to be the strongest liqueur in Italy. For some, it is impossible to drink because of it's bitterness.

  • Genziana: a bitter tasting liqueur made of gentian herbs.

  • Ratafia: made from Montepulciano wine and wild berries.

Abruzzo Olive Oil

The typical olives from Abruzzo are the Leccino variety. They produce a very mild, smooth olive oil. The other kinds of olives available are the Tortiglione, Frantoio, Carboncella, Dritta and Gentile di Chieti. Abruzzo has one of the largest productions of olive oil in Italy. A recent statistical study showed that Abruzzo is the second largest producer of extra virgin olive oil in Italy. This becomes very apparent in the landscape as you drive across the region. That is all you see: beautiful olive groves and vineyards alongside a splendid blue sea.

Recipes from Abruzzo Available on www.abruzzotoday.com

Melanzane Ripiene - Stuffed Eggplant or Aubergine

Fiadone - Sweet Abruzzo Cheesecake

Cacio e Ovo - cheeseballs

Bucatini all'amatriciana

  

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