Villa-to-table experiences in Italy
One of the best ways to experience another culture is through its cuisine, and the Italian emphasis on local, seasonal produce is second to none. Italy is a country with rich farming conditions and even richer regional traditions that are rooted in the land. As well as producing some of the best tomatoes, olives, and grapes in the world, Italy is renowned for its wealth of game and cured meats.
When you stay in one of our fully staffed villas, you get to experience 0km-food and wine with a private in-villa cook. Live off the land and immerse yourself in the country’s traditions with in-villa experiences focused on the freshest ingredients and respect for the natural landscape. Discover a handful of our farm-to-table villas and experiences below.
Fully staffed villas with chefs near Venice and Verona
Villa Zambonina is an enchanting 17th-century Palladian villa with an enormous private pool, sumptuous, frescoed living spaces with original Venetian terrazzo floors, set on a private farming estate near Verona. Palladio’s villas were built with their relationship to the immediate landscape in mind, functioning both as a noble Venetian retreat and a working farm. Surrounded by luscious countryside, the estate has been producing rice for over 300 years, upholding an important local agricultural tradition.
Rice is a key staple in the local Veneto cuisine and with an in-villa cook, you can experience the best regional flavours made using ingredients from the rich, organic paddy fields right on your doorstep. There are plenty of recipes worth savouring, like Venetian Risi e Bisi; the famous Risotto di Gò, a seafood risotto from Burano; and Amarone Risotto, which marries two of the finest products local to Verona.
Fully staffed villas with chefs in Tuscany
A breathtaking 18th-century, fully-staffed Tuscan villa, Santa Gelsa sits on a private farming estate in a charming village near Montepulciano. Managed by the homeowners, the estate produces sumptuous local wines like Chianti, Merlot, and Syrah, as well as extra-virgin olive oil and a variety of cereal grains perfect for fresh hand-made pasta.
The welcoming house managers offer wine and olive oil tastings, as well as guided tours of the best local wineries. With an in-villa local cook and the medieval village of Torrita di Siena within walking distance — with its notable butcher and weekly farmers market — immerse yourself in the slower tempo of 0km Tuscan living.
The owners of Dadianora are committed to farming quality local produce. The lovingly-restored stone farmhouse is set within a private oasis — a 240-acre estate made up of vineyards, olive groves, and mesmerising views of distant Pienza.
Enjoy private wine tastings of the estate’s Nobile di Montepulciano led by a professional sommelier, as well as a hands-on experience of “la vendemmia” when you stay during the seasonal grape harvest.
Find out more about in-villa chef services at Dadianora here, as well as the panoramic grounds that make al fresco dining here so special.
Santa Dieci is a converted 1000-year-old tower surrounded by olive trees and vines. It is set on a private organic wine estate with sweeping views of nearby Siena. As well as superb organic red wine, the owners are committed to sustainable seasonal produce, from quality fruit and vegetables to liquid gold extra-virgin olive oil.
Get to know the Chianti hills on an intimate level with wine tastings and tours of the ancient cellars as well as delicious local specialities served up by your private cook using produce grown on your doorstep.
Introducing the former Medici estates
Poggio ai Grilli
Poggio ai Grilli is a beautiful fully-staffed farmhouse, set right at the heart of the renowned Camugliano Estate near Pisa and Lucca. Once a hunting retreat for the formidable Medici family, the 250-acres of woodland and open fields dates back to the 16th-century.
The Camugliano Estate is committed to organic farming, producing extra-virgin olive oil and regional wines, organic apricot jam, and wildflower and sunflower honey from the estate’s beehives, as well as chickpeas, spelt, and flours including buckwheat. Why not have your in-villa cook whip up some delicious homemade pasta made from the estate’s Cappelli Grano Antico flour that is ground at their artisan mill?
In Italy local culinary traditions and cultural heritage are closely intertwined; Mezzadro Tuori is the perfect example of this. The Tuscan farmhouse near Mugello is just 30km from Florence and sits within the 14th-century Medici-owned Schifanoia estate, once frequented by artists like Michelozzo and Donatello.
Now an organic farm, the 1500-acre estate produces grains, chickpeas, olive oil, Chianti wines, sunflowers, and more. Immerse yourself in 0km culinary traditions with bread-making and pasta-making workshops led by your private in-villa chef, using ancient grains from the estate. Sip on earthy glasses of Chianti before touring the estate’s vineyards.
Why rent a villa in Italy with an in-villa cook?
There are plenty of farm-to-table experiences on offer at our fully-staffed villas: Villa Atena near Florence is set on a traditional hunting estate and Palazzo Nelle produce seasonal vegetables, while Palazzo Cheto near Siena make organic honey, and Ca di’ Lista near Venice produce world-renowned wines.
When you rent a villa with a local cook, dinner is prepared with a story. Our chefs use the freshest local produce and impart their expert knowledge on the region’s culinary traditions. Our award-winning Concierge Team can arrange local cheese tastings, truffle hunting, and even private cooking classes in your villa kitchen.