Introducing our new 5 day Seasonal Workshops at Enoteca Marilu!
This is a dream project that we’ve been floating around since 2007, when we thought up an idea to host wine tastings on a medieval rooftop tower in Florence. We finally found our very own space to host cooking classes, wine tastings and a natural wine shop — right in the heart of Tuscany, in our little hilltop town of San Miniato. We’ve been renovating it for the past year (see some behind the scenes on our Enoteca Marilu Instagram account!) and it will finally be ready this spring!
If you’re not ready to commit to a 5 day workshops, we also offer one day cooking classes on most Tuesdays (market day!) of the year and wine masterclasses (May 4 for the first Wine Masterclass and June 15 for our Intro to Natural Wine class)! You can read about these classes here.
Let us show you the slow life of our charming Tuscan village, tasting the delicious fresh produce and wonderful artisans making bread, prosciutto, cheese and wine in this area in a small, highly curated and intimate workshop.
We start in the mornings, each day visiting the market, the local butcher, breadmaker or cheesemaker — or depending on the season, the beekeeper or the artichoke grower. We will also go hunting for truffles one morning in the woods nearby — black summer truffles, autumn white truffles and spring bianchetto truffles all grow locally to San Miniato and each have their own flavours, scents and ways they need to be treated in the kitchen. We will cook together, you’ll don an apron and get your hands dirty, learning about local traditions on the way. We eat and drink together, tasting wines chosen by Marco. Afterwards, in the late afternoon and evenings, you are free to go and explore or rest or catch up with family (if you’re traveling with others who are doing their own thing during the day) and sample one of the fantastic restaurants in town.
These seasonal workshops run from around 10am-4pm over 5 days over the following dates:
16-21 April 2023: Spring workshop
15-19 May 2023: Late spring workshop
5-9 June 2023: Summer workshop
4-8 September 2023: Late summer workshop
9-13 October 2023: Autumn workshop
14-18 November 2023: White truffle workshop
Who is this for?
It is for people who are curious to explore slow life in a small Tuscan village, who love good food and delicious wine, who want to connect with other people who love food and wine and learn more about the local small producers around here, while picking up some new skills and recipes along the way — it’s for you!
A Sample Itinerary:
Note that being seasonal workshops, there will be some slight changes according to the season; for example, in the spring we will also get to experience the most cracking, fresh, perfumed Tuscan artichokes — harvesting them ourselves right from the field and tasting them raw and in ragu or fried. Spring and summer are also a great moment for cheesemaking as the goats milk is ultra creamy and available (in the cooler months the ladies go on maternity leave). We might be able to visit local beehives in the warmer months too, where autumn is reserved for some very special Tuscan flavours, in particular prized white truffles, but also chestnuts and saffron fields which grow locally too.
Monday: Arrival day; after you have settled in, we will meet in the late afternoon for a tour around town to get your bearings, followed by aperitivo with nibbles.
Tuesday: We start with a visit to the weekly market to pick up ingredients and see what local produce grows in this area. Then we cook a meal of fresh pasta, two salads and a seasonal cake, which we will enjoy with paired wines.
Wednesday: This morning starts with coffee at the local pastry shop and a taste of some of their specialties, then we go to the kitchen for our own baking. A late lunch will be at a local biodynamic winery set in a beautiful 15th century estate with a vineyard visit and a tasting of their most important indigenous Tuscan wines.
Thursday: This morning we head to the woods for a truffle hunt (San Miniato is home to a variety of delicious truffles that are in season all year long). Back in the kitchen you’ll learn how to use truffles in savoury but also sweet dishes. We’ll enjoy these with paired wines chosen from Marco.
Friday: Today we leave the apron behind in the kitchen to visit a local ancient grain grower and baker, watching the bread come out of the wood fired oven and having a bread tasting (in season, we will taste their wonderful artichokes too). We will visit the mill where the grains are ground as well as the picturesque grain fields, then it’s a long, lingering lunch at our favourite countryside trattoria for the best Tuscan experience before we say goodbye.
The cost is 1,800 per person.
What is included in the price:
- Three hands on cooking classes with an award winning cookbook author Emiko Davies
- Wine lessons and wine pairings with Tuscan sommelier Marco Lami
- Truffle hunt in the woods with a truffle hunter and his dog, plus an all-truffle cooking lesson
- A visit to a biodynamic winery on a 15th century estate with and lunch and wine tastings
- Tour of San Miniato and tastes around town — coffee, pastries and aperitivo!
- Visit of local farmers, producers, baker, butcher and other artisans
- Lunch every day, including one out at our favourite trattoria in the countryside
- Transport included for all the visits in the itinerary above
- Delicious natural wine and organic ingredients during meals
Not included in the cost:
- Airfare and travel costs to the workshop
- Travel insurance
To book now email us at email@example.com
San Miniato is 40 minutes train ride from Florence Santa Maria Novella train station and a very convenient 30 minutes from Pisa airport.
The closest airports are Pisa (30 mins), Florence (40 mins) and Bologna (90 mins). San Miniato is also easily reached by regional train from Florence SMN train station (40 mins) or Pisa (30 mins). From San Miniato-Fucecchio train station there is the 320 bus that will take you to Piazza Dante Alighieri in San Miniato (the last stop), in 15 minutes, departing every 30 minutes.
You can buy a bus ticket (1,80 euro) at the bar below the bus stop (or from an Italian phone number you can send a text message to 4880105 with the word “PISA” from your phone for a virtual ticket). Or call a local taxi driver (Antonio: +39 338 298 5310) to bring you up to San Miniato’s historical town in 5 minutes.
Where to Stay
San Miniato may be small but there are plenty of places to stay at all different budgets. With a car, you could consider one of the many agriturismi in the nearby countryside, otherwise within walking distance from Enoteca Marilu, right in the heart of the historical centre, here are some suggestions:
LUI a cute apartment on Airbnb, a 2 minute walk away
LEI another cute apartment on Airbnb (that can be joined with LUI)
Orange cute apartment on Airbnb
Ser Ridolfo Loft
Dimora del Grifo B&B, simple, classic rooms around the corner from the enoteca
Palazzo Essenza, a brand new palazzo of 5 beautiful rooms in Piazza del Popolo, 1 minute from the enoteca
Hotel San Miniato, a restored 13th century monastery (in need of some updates but comfortable)
Le Finestre del Seminario, new, spartan, spacious and economical rooms in a 17th century Seminary
Umamma Luxury unique apartment in Piazza Bonaparte
Things to note:
The itinerary is a guide; we reserve the right to make changes as necessary, such as where we may need to change the order of activities or replace some of the activities with something equally wonderful.
We require a deposit of 30% upon booking; the remainder should be paid before the workshop starts. This booking is non-refundable unless we are notified at least 90 days beforehand of a cancellation. We can however accept someone to take your place or we can give you a voucher towards any other classes to use within one year. We reserve the right to cancel a workshop if we do not reach the minimum number (5 guests) and in this case deposits will be fully refunded.
This is a really intimate group, there are minimum 5 but only 8 spots maximum available in each workshop!
To book now email us at firstname.lastname@example.org