and Regional Cuisine of Northern Italy
September 15 - 25, 2010
The mention of
Northern Italy conjures up visions of vineyard covered hills,
rocky coastline, blue sea, grand cathedrals, fantastic food, great
art, and wanderlust. Add BEER and friendly Italian brewers and
you have a truly special way to experience a classic destination.
Italy's northern provinces - Piemonte, Liguria and Lombardia -
and their principle cities - Torino, Genova, and Milano - are
rich in culture and culinary tradition, with distinct histories,
landscapes, and flavors. The three provinces are also home to
almost 100 small breweries, as well as famous wineries, mountain
dairies, family-run salumeri, age old olive groves, and traditional
aceteri (vinegar producers). On this trip we will gain delicious
insights into each as we focus on visits and tastings throughout
the tour. Enjoy guided city tours, spectactular scenery, small
italian hotels, and exceptionally friendly hosts, on this unique
culinary beer tour in Italy. Many included meals, a variety of
interesting visits, travel by rail and private coach, and Cinque
Terre park passes are included. Our 2009 test trip was a huge
success, join us in 2010!
Policies & Details: Click
Wednesday, September 15 –
There are a variety of
gateways to Northern Italy, including Milan, Genoa, Pisa, or even
Rome. Monterosso Al Mare is easily accessible by rail, and the
hotel is a 3 minute walk from the station.
Thursday, September 16 -- Arrive
in Monterosso Al Mare , Welcome Dinner, Drinks by the Sea
The Cinque Terre,
including Monterosso al Mare, are 5 villages built into the rocky
cliffs along the Ligurian Coast. They entire area is a national
park and the long- isolated villages are connected by ancient
foot paths and walkable in a few hours. Upon arrival at our hotel
(a short walk from the train station,) in Monterosso, we'll gather
for a welcome drink and short introduction to the area and the
activities during our first two days. We'll enjoy a Welcome
Dinner this evening. Overnight in Monterosso Al Mare.
Friday, September 17
-- Exlpore Cinque Terre
Today is completely
open to explore any or all of the 5 villages. Visits can be made
via rail, ferry or foot, or any combination as part of the included
park pass. Bands of like minded merry makers will be sighted,
here and there. Local seafood and white wines are outstanding!
There are a handful of places with good beer, and many places
offering spectacular views and excellent local specialties. Overnight
in Monterosso Al Mare.
Saturday, September 18
-- Morning Free in CT, Train to Genoa, Montegioco Beer Dinner
The morning is
free to shop, take pictures, or explore more of this beautiful
area until we head North to Genoa and beyond. After time to check-in
to our hotel in the heart of Genoa, we'll board our coach to travel
further north. Our first stop is Birrificio Busalla for a sampling
of beers, local salumi and foccacia. Continue to the country-tavern
Locanda del Grue, where the chef will create an inspired regional
menu just for us, using the award winning beers of Montegioco
as a base. The Mastro Birraio from Birrificio Montegioco, Riccardo
Franzosi, will likely join us for dinner, and
select the beer pairings for the evening. We may even enjoy a
late night brewery tour. Late return to Genoa. Overnight in Genoa.
Sunday, September 19
-- Guided morning walking tour, Harborside Lunch at Bicu, Free
afternoon in Genoa
we'll have guided walk around Genoa, followed by a harborside
lunch at Bicu, with their interesting beers (including
one with basil) and fine Genovese fare. The remainder of the day
is free to explore and beer hunt. There is a lot to do and see,
including one of the worlds best aquariums, a huge medieval center,
churches, piazzas, and many a fine place to sit and sip. Overnight
Monday, September 20
-– Olive Oil Museum, Chevalier, Pizza, Vernante, Troll
Today we'll drive
along of the Ligurian coast to Imperia for a visit to their Olive
Oil Museum. After some time to explore the rich history of olives
in the region, we'll continue the short way to Diano Marina, home
of Birrificio Chevalier. We will have a short brewmaster hosted
tour of the compact brewery, and then visit a local reataurant
for a beer lunch along the Italian Riviera. We
will also learn a little about pizza making (and eating) from
a world champion pizza maker, who happens to be the father of
the brewer. Next it is on to the mountain town of Vernante, where
we will spend the night. After time to check-in to the hotel we
will make the short trip up the valley to Birra Troll -- to eat,
drink and be merry in their brewpub in the mountains. Overnight
in Pinocchio-land, the town of Vernante.
Tuesday, September 21–-
Mountain Dairy, to Alba, Baladin Beer Dinner
we will travel up into the mountains to a visit family-owned Piemontese
cheese maker. We will learn about the age old practice and taste
the fruits of the labor in the beautiful Maritime Alps. The afternoon
is free to explore the small town of Vernante, with its ruined
castle, river walk, and Pinocchoi murals that tell the true story
of the famous puppet. This afternoon we'll travel to Piozzo and
Le Baladin for a thorough tasting and dinner
in their pub. After dinner, we continue to Alba, our home for
the night. Overnight in the truffle capital and home of Nutella
(it smells like chocolate if the wind is right) -- Alba.
22 -- Free morning in Alba, Fontanafredda Lunch, Vinegar Producer
Visit, Evening Free in Torino
is free to explore the beautiful city of Alba, gateway to the
Langhe. At midday, we'll travel by coach to nearby winery, Fontanafredda,
whose barrels are aged in a former castle. We'll have a lunch
of local specialities and a tour or their impressive cellars before
traveling on to discover the secrets of vinegar at a nearby aceteri.
Coninue to Torino after the visit. The evening is free to explore
the capital of Piedmont. Overnight Torino.
Thursday, September 23
-– Morning guided tour, Eataly, Free day in Torino
we'll start with a local guide for tour of Torino's main attractions
and historic center. The tour will end at Eataly, where lovers
of all things gourmet can indulge in just about anything edible.
The afternoon and evening are free to explore and enjoy the city
and its many offerings. Plenty of food and culture to keep us
busy until through the evening. A Brewpub dinner perhaps... Overnight
Friday, September 24
bright and early, we move on to Milan for a full day to eat, shop
and explore. Milan boasts its famed cathedral, the view from the
top is impressive, and there are all sorts of high end Italian
merchandise to ogle. Some brewpubs are open for lunch, but the
day is free until this evening when we'll meet in the hotel and
head over to Birrificio Lambrate cucina for our casual
brewpub dinner with the locals. Overnight Milan
Saturday, September 25
-– Farewell Italy! Travel home.
There are multiple
transportation options to both Milan airports. Regular coach shuttles
depart from Milan Cantral Station. The hotel desk can help. Cheers!
Cuisine and Beer - Creative brewers are taking food and
beer (and you) to delicious places. Discover a wide variety of
excellent interpretations of classic beer styles. And great coffee,
wine and food are simply the norm in Northern Italy.
Terre - Five lovely, Italian, seaside villages perched on
the rocky Ligurian coast are literally carved into the cliff offering
stunnigly beautiful testiment to the efforts those who built them.
Eat, travel from village to village, marvel at spectacular scenry,
a great start to our trip.
- Home to a famous, historic, harbor, one the best aquariums
anywhere and the larget medieval quarter in Europe, Genoa has
become a great visitors city. Beautiful architecture, grand placaes,
- A mountain town, home to ski lodges, Pinocchio fame,
and one of the best brewpubs anywhere - Birra Troll
- A medieval gem at the gateway to the famed Langhe wine
region. The truffle capital of Piedmont, and a true epicurian
paradise of local specialties
- Grand squares, Rococo architecture, chocolate, laid
back but upscale, Torino is the commercial and cultural hub of
Piedmont. Home to the famed Shroud of Turin, famous art galleries,
and the automotive industry.
folks to travel with who will share your ecclectic taste
for anti pasti, gelato, wine and excellent beer!Land
person, double occupancy
accommodation in fine, centrally located hotels, travel by private
coach, rail and public transportation, brewery visits, beer tastings,
entrance fees and tours as outlined in the itinerary, all breakfasts,
4 dinners, 3 lunches, and trip leadership.
is not included in the trip price. The trip begins on Thursday
afternoon in the hotel lobby in Monterosso Al Mare.
For Registration Policies & Details: Click
Air Travel is not
included. Travelers are encouraged to use mileage awards,
travel outside group dates, or extend their stay to make the most
out of the trip. Please contact us to inquire about low fares
from your city. Please confirm the trip's
operation before purchasing air tickets.
The trip officially
begins at the hotel in Monterosso Al Mare, specific details
including a map to the hotel, regional information and a detailed
will be included with your trip documents, which you'll receive
2 - 3 weeks before the trip.
How we get around:
For all included excursions and visits, transportation will be
included as well. Within the cities, we will rely on walking and
public transportation. Travel between city and city will be done
in our private motor coach and/or by rail.
overall style of the trip is best suited for somewhat adventurous,
beer-loving travelers who want the camaraderie and structure of
a tour, as well as the opportunity to explore independently. Planned
events and excursions will, for the most part, be informal. Guided
touring is generally the exception, though travelers can always
rely on the support and assistance of the trip leader.
note also, that this itinerary is subject to change based on brewery
availability, force majeur, acts of dieties, common sense or bad
weather, etc. Some breweries are often unable to commit to hosting
groups until a couple of weeks before we arrive. Any substitutions
will be as good or better than what we replaced. And don't worry,
the beer will be great!