What our students have to say about Il Campo/Cucina:
“This is so much more than a cooking school! It’s the key to unlock the door to a Tuscany you’d never find through any guidebook or website.
Elie Cole, Portland, Oregon
“This week was a remarkable window into the real world of Tuscan cuisine. Having hands-on instruction in the kitchens of Tuscan families was an experience I will never forget. The warmth and enthusiasm of our tour organizers, combined with the richness of the Tuscan Countryside, vineyards and the welcoming arms of the town of Radicondoli, provided the perfect sense of ambiance I so anticipated when signing up for this course. I was not disappointed! It was an unbelievable experience!”
Judy Hartman, Wakefield, Massachussetts
“I don’t remember if it was while I was elbow-deep in “00” flour, making my own pasta, or while I was sharing lunch with a young Italian count, but at some point it hit me: There is nowhere on earth I’d rather be right now. For someone who doesn’t cook (read: me), choosing to spend a week at cooking school might seem questionable. But I’m not being hyperbolic when I say that my week at Il Campo/Cucina changed my life. Beyond experiencing the best of Tuscany—the incredible food and wine, the breathtaking scenery, the heartwarming hospitality—I came home with a newfound confidence in my ability to cook. I’ve developed a passion for fresh local vegetables and top-notch cheese and olive oil. I’ve started taking Italian lessons. And rarely has a week gone by when I’ve not heard from my new, very dear Il Campo friends. Funny thing, in the months since I’ve been back, I’ve yet to look at the videos I took: I don’t need to. The people I met, the sights I saw, the meals I shared are all vivid to me. They live in my heart.”
Maura Fritz, New York City
“This was my first time in Italy—the experience was more than I expected. It was a full immersion into the Tuscan lifestyle and culture, an opportunity to go into Tuscan family homes, interact with the locals and learn cooking secrets from the master Tuscan chefs. It was an easy, stress-free experience with all the planning and details taken care of by the guides and staff. It felt like visiting and being welcomed by a warm, loving family who cherishes your presence—it doesn’t get much better than this in life! This program delivered much more than it promised. The personal commitments from the directors and staff to provide a unique and memorable Tuscan experience were lovingly delivered! Thank you for helping me realize a very special dream!“
Ann Albrecht, San Diego, California
“Il Campo/Cucina is more than a cooking school. It is an infusion of Tuscan culture where you experience the heart and soul of Italy and the sheer joy of cooking Tuscan style. Bravo!”
Mary Jane Norton, Washington, DC
“Much more than a ‘cooking school’. It’s a week of nourishment, as much for the palate and stomach (!) as for the heart and soul. Heaping bowls of pasta, baskets of warm breads and endless warm embraces all infused with the gentle welcome of Radicondoli created a magical and full week of fun! What a tremendous experience this past week has been! Take the stunning setting of Bel Canto, add Radicondoli, sprinkle with a varied group of gals and get it all stirred up by Marlane & Giovanna and it’s a recipe for success! As I sit writing, listening to my new (and old!) friends eating together one last time, I feel the breadth of this magical week settle in my heart. I will cherish each experience and look forward to the next! Grazie!”
Donna West, Palm Desert, California
“Learning the techniques of preparing and enjoying Tuscan foods while surrounded by the beautiful landscape and the equally beautiful people, making new friends and memories and indulging in a variety of tastes, textures and smells. Eating fabulous food and drinking wine at lunch and dinner each day is not for the unadventurous!”
Kim Perry, Jamul, California
“We were made to feel very welcome by everyone involved in the program. I immediately felt that it was going to be a great week! The beauty of Radicondoli and Tuscany also contributed to this feeling of being really privileged to have this experience. I never felt like a tourist—it’s wonderful to have this personal connection. Of course, I learned a lot about food preparation etc. and I can’t wait to share this with family and friends at home.
You already had the perfect location and then you had the perfect idea—to share the wonders of Tuscany and Radicondoli with us. It’s been a great week and I’m certainly taking a big part of Italy home with me… Centanni a Marlane, Giovanna, and all our wonderful hosts and the teachers. I’m already thinking about my next visit. “
Siegrune Muffoletto, Toronto, Ontario, Canada
“Thank you both for dreaming big and working so hard so my dream could come true—that is to come to Tuscany to learn how to cook authentic Italian fare. Having an opportunity to share in the Tuscan way of life has been a tremendous privilege. I found the Tuscans to be generous with sharing their knowledge and skills. Each time I create one of the fabulous recipes I will be able to relive this memorable week back home in Canada.”
Marianne Walsh, Barrie, Ontario, Canada
“This was a unique opportunity to experience La Vita Vera Toscana. Marlane and Giovanna were a great team; they put their heart and soul into providing the best experience possible for their guests. Il Campo/Cucina provided a lifetime of food and wine experiences distilled into one amazing week.“
Elaine Iannuzziello, Toronto, Ontario, Canada
“Imagine stepping into an unfamiliar world where the lives of several centuries have left their mark in a small hilltop town in Tuscany. Where green got its name, and where life is lived so close to the earth you can taste it. Ten students, mostly strangers, together day and night, being gently guided in the making of Italian food by the most special and lovely Italian ladies and men. Every need is anticipated, and each day is full of surprises. Hands working in and rolling out the dough, making pizza and ravioli, biscotti and tiramisu, chopping herbs and vegetables, organizing, building, creating, and finally eating your own creations. People bonded forever by virtue of working together to create their own masterpieces. Il Campo/Cucina is just such an intimate experience. It will be with me forever.”
Elizabeth Ims, Venice, Florida
“I think the beauty of the area- the peacefulness of the village, the ease of getting from one venue to another–the weather (for our time there), the lushness of the countryside—The fact that everything was prepaid—no need to bring any more $$ unless we wanted to shop in Siena or in Radicondali for personal gifts-were all things worth noting.”
Tish Plum, Whitehouse Station, New Jersey
“Here is to all the great and wonderful people of Radicondoli, who made this trip a festive and joyful one. Never in my wildest dreams did I, Elissa Cevola, think that at age ninety-six I would be in Tuscany doing a cooking school trip with my two daughters and grand-daughter. Wow! It was a dream come true. Thank you for making this a memorable and fantastic time of my life. I loved every minute of every day of it. I will leave a little piece of me here when I go.”
Elissa Cevola, Newport Beach, California
“My time at Il Campo has been incredible. I came here to be with my Mom because cooking in Tuscany has always been her dream Not only did she live her dream but I have learned to cook delicious dishes and feed my family in a beautiful and artful way. We learned to use whole foods and simple items and make spectacular meals. I made friends for a lifetime and feel like Radicondoli is my home. I will miss you all until our next cooking class. Ciao!”
Ria Ferronato, Redlands, California
“ What a joy to be part of the creation of Il Campo. The people of Radicondoli have stolen my heart. The countryside has inspired me to paint. I will remember this experience for the rest of my life. I take with me the love and laughter of all of the wonderful people I have met here.
The pasta class was exceptional, well-planned and clear. There was ample opportunity for a hands-on experience. I felt a true Tuscan experience as the family shared their experiences with us explaining how they live well off their land feeding their families and making a living. It was a unique opportunity to get the true experience of these remarkable Tuscans and their pursuit of a pure, sweet life by the preservation of all natural resources. [The instructors} were able to make me feel an integral part of their lives in a short moment in time.”
Juliette Becker, Newport Beach, California
“I don’t know if words can adequately describe the experience here in Radicondoli. It is not merely a cooking school but a blending of people. It is such a unique experience… Thank you for such a special fulfillment of a lifelong dream.”
Christina Coussoulis, Palm Desert, California
“This was a magical week! We all came with different hopes and expectations. I know mine were all met. I loved the beauty of Radicondoli. I felt very welcome and secure and I know you all were sincerely happy to have us and I know you wanted to take care of our every need.”
Patricia Mayer, Cleveland, Ohio
Thank you for the most amazing, wonderful week in Italy. This week was filled with adventures of a lifetime that I will take home and cherish as memories. I feel I now have an Italian family and will look forward to returning with family and friends to this most amazing place, close to heaven!
Beth Tribble, Chattanooga, TN
Words cannot begin to describe the experience of a week at Il Campo/Cucina. The people are incredible, the Tuscan hills are alluring, and the food is magnifico—not to forget the wonderful wines. Marlane and Giovanna are more than hosts for this awe-some week—they are friends forever. Mille grazie!
Gretta Estey, Baltimore, Maryland
The Il Campo experience for me was a week-long banquet celebrating the uniqueness of rural Tuscany in all of its beauty, tradition, history and friendliness, as experienced in its long culture of hearth, family, and cuisine. I went to Il Campo expecting to learn about Tuscan food. I left Il Campo filled with the joy of having been part of an ancient culture that is alive and well and vital and, yes, delicious beyond description.
You have shared and communicated so very well your love of rural Tuscany in every aspect of our incredible week. The villagers who took us into their homes and hearts did so out of their love and respect for you. Someone once said that food is love. Il Campo was a week of just that. Giovanna is a treasure. Please give her my thanks for all she did to make us feel so welcome and to have such a full and wonderful week.By now you are wheeling your van filled with another group of very fortunate Il Campoites. I have no doubt that they will be filled, as were we, with so much more than incredibly delicious Tuscan food.Thank you so much for our extraordinary week. It was magical, indeed, and oh so much more!
Fred Spulnik, San Diego, CA
How to thank someone for sharing their time, love and lifestyle? This is what you and the people of Radicondoli have done for my family. This is a lovely home we have stayed in and the view—wonderful. I have never had such fabulous food.
Barbara Altbaum, San Diego, CA
Thank you for an amazing time in an amazing place. I hope to bring many of my friends here very soon.
Daniel Altbaum, San Diego, CA
Il Campo/Cucina is summer camp for adults!
Aurora Christophers, San Diego, CA
Marlane and her Il Campo/Cucina team spin a week of Tuscan living at its utmost best. “Magical” is the only way to describe our experience. The Palio events exceeded all expectations–accommodation was superb. Guides were exceptional. The Cooking lessons were wonderful! Engaging and entertaining as well as a great culinary learning adventure. The meals and wine were abundant and over the top delicious. We are already planning the next visit!
Debbie and Tom Tucker, Del Mar, CA
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