Abbondanza Toscana

About Us Selva. . .the Restored Farmhouse Our Tuscan Surroundings Courses and Programs for 2008 Program Dates and Prices Your Host and Local Instructors and Guides Register for a Program Contact Us Must Reading/Watching What our Guests say about us New courses for 2009


    2009 Program Schedule:

    We're scheduling our programs for 2009 so you can mark the date of your preferred program on your calendar. Check back with us regularly as new programs are continually being added.

    Tuscany En Plein Air: A Painting Workshop with Brenda Swenson. California artist Brenda Swenson returns to Selva to teach the charming, free-flowing and colorful nature of watercolor at its best . . . in the outdoors! You'll explore painting venues on the estate with its red tile roofed villas and farmhouses, olive groves and vineyards and small vignettes of overflowing flowerpots, lemon trees, patched walls and more around every corner. Other excursions include San Gimignano with its famous towers, a country villa garden, the colorful cliffside towns of the Cinque Terre and the jewel city of Lucca during the Santa Zita Flower Festival. To see Brenda's work, visit her website at Dates: April 18-28, 2009

    Tuscan Inspiration: A Painting Workshop with Judy Schroeder. What better venue could an artist ask for than Tuscany! A California native, artist Judy Schroeder has traveled extensively in Italy, France, England, Portugal, Mexico, French Polynesia and Samoa conducting workshops in many of these locations. Her favorite way to paint is "on location," and she'll help you find the perfect subject during your excursions both on and off the estate: hillsides covered with vineyards or grazing sheep; rustic farmhouses with towering cypress and umbrella pines; formal gardens surrounding a stately villa; the enchanging hill town of San Gimignano; the dramatic seaside villages of the Cinque Terre clinging to steep cliffs . . . and more. Learn about Judy, her work and classes at Dates: May 13-23, 2009

    A Culinary Tour with Curtis Lincoln of the Brown Palace Hotel and Spa Tastes of Tuscany: A Culinary Tour with Curtis Lincoln, a weeklong celebration of all things seasonal.. Curtis Lincoln, executive chef at Denver’s famous Brown Palace Hotel and Spa, invites you to join him in going to the source of Tuscany’s gastronomic excellence, to the seaside for fresh fish, to the hills for Italy’s renowned Chianina beef, to the shepherdess for fresh pecorino cheese and ricotta, and to the wine country to visit the winemakers whose wine Curtis chooses for his table at the Brown Palace. A winner of many awards, Curtis is a classically trained graduate of the Culinary Institute of America and has cooked in many critically acclaimed restaurants, including the River Café in New York, The Straight Wharf in Nantucket, and the exclusive Game Creek Club in Vail.
    Dates: June 6- 13, 2009

    Travel, Wine & Cuisine with Wine Country International® Magazine. Join Christopher and Darcy Davies, editors/co-founders of Wine Country International® Magazine and hosts of Travel, Wine & Cuisine radio show on an intense week as culinary tourists in Tuscany. Plus they'll share their expertise as internationally published photographers so you can create your own photographic memory of your experiences. You'll dine at "undiscovered" restaurants where the locals still enjoy traditional regional fare, visit small wineries where the winemakers themselves take you on a tour and pour their wines for your private tasting, explore the nearby city of Lucca with all of its cultural, historical and shopping offerings. And you'll learn the art of Tuscan cooking with our own Italian chef. Dates: June 20-27, 2009

    A Gastronomic Tour with Angelo Prosperi-Porta, award-winning chef and co-owner of the luxurious Cooper’s Cove Guesthouse on the Sooke waterfront on Vancouver Island, BC. Prosperi-Porta offers 5-star dining, an impressive wine list and cooking classes. His cookbook, Flavours of Coopers Cove Guesthouse written with Ina Haegemann, was a 2006 Independent Publisher Book Award winner and was named Best First Book in English from the Gourmand World Cookbook Awards. Angelo terms his teaching style "interactive" and will lead participants through a week-long cooking course that also includes cultural and wine excursions in the area. Dates: September 26 - October 3, 2009

    Plus our popular programs scheduled just for your group:

    The Tuscan Kitchen, From the Farmhouse to the Villa, celebrates the joys of Italian cooking, from the simple and savory ‘cucina povera’ of the farms to the elegant and bountiful cooking of the villas. This hands-on, up-to-your-elbows course is taught and encouraged by our talented chef Emanuela Dini, and is held in our rustic and inviting professional kitchen. You also enjoy wine tastings, visits to shepherds and olive mills, cultural excursions, markets, shopping and other activities that will immerse you in the Tuscan lifestyle. This program is available on request to groups. A one week stay is suggested, but varying lengths are possible.

    Per Bacco, dedicated to Bacchus, the Roman god of wine and good times, is designed for those a little more interested in wineries and restaurant tables than the kitchen stove. You’ll enjoy in-depth wine tours, meet the winemakers and learn about their approach to winemaking, visit wineries from small ‘garage’ wineries to sophisticated producers. You’ll visit unique enotecas, innovative osterias and restaurants, specialty shops and markets. Includes two half-days in the Abbondanza Toscana kitchen learning to make the dishes you enjoyed during the week. This program is available on request to groups. A one week stay is suggested, but varying lengths are possible.

    Tuscan Gardens and Farmhouse Cooking, takes you from the campo (the fields) for wild herbs and greens, to humble ortos (vegetable and fruit gardens) to fantastic Renaissance and Baroque gardens, with roses, camellias, lemon groves, grottoes, follies and water tricks, and then into the kitchen to use the fresh vegetables, wild greens and herbs so famous in Tuscan cooking. You’ll have a guided tour of a local vivaio (nursery) and consult with the owner about trying some Tuscan plants in your garden, and you are invited to tour a "typical" villa garden and enjoy lunch on their terrazzo. This program is available on request to groups. A one week stay is suggested, but varying lengths are possible.

    A Window on Tuscany, a customized week to suit your group’s special interests. A sample schedule designed for a group traveling to Tuscany in the Fall period is included in the course descriptions. This group asked for a week that would introduce them to the best of Lucca and Chianti. Available upon request to groups of eight or more.

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