Piedmont with Mark Estee

November 21 - 27, 2022 | One Exclusive Departure

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Savor the Slow Life

Join chef Mark Estee for a culinary adventure in the birthplace of Slow Food

November 21 - 27, 2022

One departure only—reserve your spot today

7 days, 6 nights

Best of Piedmont from Turin and Bra to Langhe and Gavi

Price from

$7,500

per person, based on double occupancy

Questions? Text or call us
+1 (855) 219-8018

The flavors linger in your mouth. You’ve tasted a perfectly crafted glass of Barolo in its birthplace, and tasted rare regional cheese made the old-fashioned way, with hard work and a passion for tradition. Now, you step onto a terrace and look out at the expanse of vineyards, noting the shades of green that paint the hillsides and Alps in the distance. You’ve met local producers and tasted sparkling wines harvested from nearby vineyards, truffles sniffed out by dogs as you cheered them on. Despite the endless array of food and incredible company, this trip has been a lesson in slowing down. For as much as the Piedmont way is to preserve the local ecosystem, flavor and tradition it also keeps the memories alive.

With you on this seven-day Piedmont adventure is chef Mark Estee. He’s the Food Network star of “Undercover Chef,” and the local-food pioneer transforming Nevada’s food scene with award-winning restaurants that showcase what’s fresh from local farmers and ranchers. It is Mark’s nod to his own Italian heritage—he travels frequently to Italy—and to the simple pleasure of his grandmother’s cooking.

If you crave good food, beautiful scenery and a fresh take on food culture, this trip is for you. We’ll go deep in the birthplace of the Slow Food movement. We’ll meet the producers keeping centuries-old traditions alive and, at every turn, savoring Piedmont’s unforgettable flavors.

Honor

The ethos of Slow Food in its birthplace, the centuries of care for producers and the land working in harmony

Savor

The flavors of Piedmont: white truffles, agnolotti pasta and aged Gorgonzola, rich Barolos and crisp Cortese di Gavi

Feast

Your eyes on northern Italy’s rolling hills and ancient vineyards, as much a fixture of the region as the mighty Alps

Connect

With Mark and his unwavering commitment to local food and producers, alongside a group of like-minded travelers

3 Reasons to Travel with Mark Estee

With a larger-than-life personality, it’s only fitting that Mark Estee is celebrity chef to “The Biggest Little City in the World,” as well as the newest Food Network star. A staple of Nevada's culinary scene, Mark is also a passionate pioneer in the local food movement: “Our job is to buy great products and not eff them up!” He sources ingredients for his award-winning restaurants from area farmers, ranchers, butchers and vendors. Fresh. Local. Simple. And the perfect companion to explore Piedmont and the birthplace of Slow Food.

Italia, La Mia Patria

Mark has started a handful of successful Italian restaurants. He's a frequent visitor to Italy, and he can't wait to share it. “It's an adventure, you know, we're going on an adventure together.”

In the Family

Mark was born and raised Italian-Greek just outside Boston, and he perfected his red sauce at an early age. From cooking Sunday dinner with his dad to simmering huge batches of sauce for his high school football team, Italian food is in his blood.

Local Food Pioneer

Mark is one of the first chefs in Nevada to source his ingredients from local farmers and ranchers. “I used to call and say 'I'd like 10 pounds of green asparagus and 10 pounds of white asparagus and 10 pounds of purple asparagus.' Now I call and say, 'What do you have? And they send me what they have.”

Your Experience

“I love Italian cooking. I love Italian cuisine. I love Italian people. I love how small, and how big, Italy feels at the same time.”
Mark Estee

Turin, Bra, Gavi, Langhe, Alba

“My passion for local food is something I hang my hat on. I will be involved with it until the day I die.”
Mark Estee

Day by Day

Day 1

Benvenuto a Torino! Today we take in the beauty of the Piedmont region in Turin, which with its Baroque buildings, stone streets and towering Alps backdrop, is all too easy.  Our first taste of the city is a literal one: a behind-the-scenes food tour of Turin’s fabled markets, shops and cafes. We’ll sample regional cheese, lunch on seasonal delicacies, and last but not least, we’ll dive into the beautifully complex world of Italian chocolate. We’ll start with one of the city’s proudest inventions, a steaming Bicerin made of espresso, drinking chocolate, and milk.

We’ll reconvene in the evening for a pre-dinner aperitif and introduction to Turin’s Slow Food movement—a theme we’ll be exploring deliciously during the week ahead—followed by a three-course welcome dinner at Il Consorzio as the sun dissolves behind the Alps.

Day 1 Highlights

  • Food tour led by local expert
  • Welcome dinner
  • Stay at Turin Palace Hotel in Turin

Day 2

Today we go straight to the source of Piedmont’s Slow Food movement—the idyllic and untouched countryside. As Baroque architecture gives way to rolling hills, our first stop is one of La Morra’s most storied wineries. Far from your standard “wine tour,” this tasting and tutorial is a personal and in-depth introduction to the region’s finest varietals. After lunching trattoria-style with the winemaker, we’ll make our way to the village of Barolo, where we’ll visit a historic enoteca to sample even more of the flagship wines of the region. 

Sated by historic vintages and still full from lunch, we’ll settle down for the afternoon among sun-kissed vineyards and hazelnut groves at our new home for the next 3 nights, the luxurious and quaint Villa D’Amelia. After some free time to relax, we’ll reconvene for an only-in-Piedmont dinner at the hotel’s flagship restaurant.

Day 2 Highlights

  • Winery visit
  • Explore Barolo
  • Stay at Villa D'Amelia

Day 3

We’ll start the morning meeting a legendary butcher in Bra, a village that epitomizes the rural Slow Food phenomenon. After sampling fine salamis and sausage unique to the region, we’ll wander Bra’s market before cozying up for coffee and sweets at Bra’s historic pasticceria. 

We’ll let the espresso propel us onward until we wind up at the University of Gastronomic Sciences in nearby Pollenzo. Here, we’ll turn to Mark as he guides us through a hands-on cooking class—the ingredients and recipe inspired by all the sumptuous discoveries we’ve made so far. Finally, we’ll be invited to sample from the university’s coveted wine bank, a centuries-old cellar filled with vintages so rare they have to be kept in a vault!

We’ll punctuate the day with a Slow Food seminar and tour of this unique university before returning to our villa for a little rest and relaxation. Don’t call it a night though, because a truly memorable dinner awaits.

Day 3 Highlights

  • Visit University of Gastronomic Sciences 
  • Lunch prepared by Mark Estee
  • Explore Bra
  • Stay at Villa D'Amelia

Day 4

The hunt is on for truffles! Led by an expert trifolau, you’ll retreat to the forest with specially trained dogs for a guided experience on locating, identifying and cooking up these flavorful fungi. And because a day of truffles deserves a hearty pairing, we’ll grab some local wine and sit right down for an exquisite rustic lunch.

What’s next? Just exclusive, private access to the most famous distillery in Italy and a lesson (samples included, of course) in traditional liqueurs and grappas. We’ll practically float back to our villa just in time for sunset. After taking it all in, we’ll meet up for a truly special dinner—think the epitome of Piedmont slow food cuisine.

Day 4 Highlights

  • Truffle Hunt
  • Distillery Visit
  • Stay at Villa D'Amelia

Day 5

The truffle theme continues as we’re invited to an exclusive Truffle sensory workshop; we’ll get an expert breakdown of how to judge a truffle and learn how the judges rate these delicious fungi during the International Alba White Truffle Fair.

This is all but a delicious appetizer for the day’s main course, a Mark-curated feast of the senses at Giovanni Rosso. We’ll sip wines grown just a stone’s throw away while we work our way through courses upon courses of local cuisine—Tajarin al burro, anyone?

Euphoric and sated, we’ll wind our way to Gavi and the stunning Villa Sparina, our home for the next two nights. After some free time to stroll the grounds, we’ll descend into their 17th-century wine cellar to sip their finest varietals and nibble on homemade sausage and focaccia.

Day 5 Highlights

  • Truffle Sensory Workshop
  • Lunch at Giovanni Rosso
  • Stay at Villa Sparina

Day 6

We kick off the day at one of the most acclaimed new wineries in the region, whose mission statement is basically a love letter to Piedmont and its people. We’ll learn firsthand their biodynamic methods and how each step is designed to encourage biodiversity, reduce pollution and preserve the farm for the next generation. And then, we’ll drink: soft reds and mercurial whites in between flights of hyperlocal goat cheeses from a nearby farm. After a stroll through picturesque vineyards, we’ll convene for lunch at Locanda la Raia, with dishes personally selected by Michelin-star Chef Tommaso Arrigoni.

Our lunch devoured, we’ll return to the Villa Sparina for a lesson in Piedmont’s preferred apertif—vermouth. Led by a renowned mixologist, we’ll use local spirits and recipes to craft the perfect afternoon pick-me-up. After some rest and relaxation, we’ll join Mark and a master chef for our farewell dinner. Set in a rustic barn on the Villa Sparina estate, this epic meal—plates upon plates of Piedmont’s staples—is truly a storybook ending to this Slow Food odyssey.

Day 6 Highlights

  • Sustainable Winery visit
  • Farewell dinner by Mark Estee
  • Stay at Villa Sparina

Day 7

All good things must come to an end. We’ll soak up the last of our time together over a big farewell breakfast before bidding goodbyes. Until next time: Ciao!

Day 7 Highlights

  • Transfer to Turin airport

Where We Sleep

Natural beauty and luxurious comfort. Our accommodations capture the essence, ethos and hospitality of Piedmont.

Turin Palace Hotel

Turin

Wide windows and incredible views make it easy to enjoy Turin from afar. Light-filled rooms and all the modern comforts make it the perfect base to explore the city.

Villa Sparina

Gavi

Set near lush woods and the sprawling vineyards of Monterotondo, our boutique villa hotel is the perfect nature-meets-luxury experience, set in a beautifully restored 18th-century farmhouse manor with all the modern comforts. It's also a working vineyard, producing acclaimed Gavi and Barbera wines stored on the grounds in historic cellars you can visit in between visits to the spa or simply wandering the expansive grounds.

Villa D'Amelia

Benevello

A storybook estate nestled among vineyards and hazelnut groves, this renovated 19th-century villa exudes Piedmont. Elegant interiors—Travertine marble in every bathroom—blend idyllically with the surrounding gardens that offer a staggering view of the Alps.

Everything was done superbly.
Kelly S.
I was blown away by how flawlessly Modern Adventure fulfilled and exceeded my expectations.
Josh S.
I loved the warmth, sincerity and caring of the Modern Adventure team.
Bob Z.

Book Piedmont with Mark Estee

Number of Travelers

Payment

$7,500

per person, based on double occupancy

Can't travel on these dates?
Call us at

+1 (855) 219-8018

Questions?

That’s OK, we have answers. Read our FAQs below. Or text or call us at +1 (855) 219-8018 to speak with a Modern Adventure Trip Specialist.

  1. What does the price include?

    Six nights at four- and five-star accommodations; private travel for all day trips and excursions; departure airport transfer; private tours with local guides and cultural experts; exclusive VIP access and tastings; guided activities, adventures and expeditions; entrance fees; daily breakfasts, most lunches and dinners; local beverages with meals.

  2. What does the price not include?

    International roundtrip airfare to Italy; travel insurance; transportation to the trip’s starting point; activities not included in the trip itinerary; hotel incidentals including room service, laundry service and hotel bar tabs; food and beverages not included in itinerary; gratuity for tour leader.

  3. Where does this trip start and end?

    Our adventure begins at the Turin Palace Hotel in Turin, Italy. The closest airport is the Torino International Airport (TRN). We recommend arriving one day early in Turin to ensure you’re at our starting point on time. Our adventure ends in the small town of Cioccaro, Italy. The closest airport is Torino International Airport (TRN), about 75 minutes away. Your flight home should be scheduled to depart at 2pm or later from TRN.

  4. What travel documents are needed?

    US citizens are not required to have a visa for stays in Italy of under 90 days. Just bring a valid US passport. For citizens of other countries, please check with the Italian embassy or consulate for information and requirements.

  5. Do I need to pay a solo traveler supplement?

    For solo travelers, there is an $2,000 single-supplement fee—paid at the time of booking to secure a private room. These spots are limited and available on a first-come, first-served basis.

  6. Who is going on this trip?

    Our adventures typically have between 10 and 20 guests, and our Modern Adventure Team. Our experiences are fun and inclusive and you can expect to be joined by a diverse group in terms of age, background and interests—including solo travelers, couples and friends traveling together. This adventure is for travelers age 18 and above.

  7. Who is leading this trip?

    This trip is led by an expert Modern Adventure trip leader. They’re an experienced travel guide, a representative of Modern Adventure and your go-to person for questions or concerns on the trip. We’ll be joined throughout our adventure by local, expert guides who are deeply knowledgeable with respect to local cultures, customs and history and are passionate about sharing that with us.

  8. Do I need Travel Insurance?

    We highly recommend purchasing travel insurance. Travel insurance allows you to seek reimbursement for your trip costs; if your trip plans change for unforeseeable reasons, or if you need to get medical help, emergency transport, and for theft, loss or damage of items while traveling. For best coverage, always insure the full trip cost within two weeks of your initial trip deposit and note that most ‘Cancel For Any Reason’ policies must be purchased on the date of your initial deposit.

  9. What is the cancellation policy?

    You may cancel before July 24, 2022 and receive a full refund minus a $500 per-person service fee. If you cancel on or after July 25, 2022, there is a 50% cancellation fee. On or after September 22, 2022 there is a 100% cancellation fee. We highly recommend purchasing travel insurance as we are not able to make exceptions to this policy in cases of family/medical emergency or cases of the trip being canceled (see our Terms and Conditions for full details).

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