Traditional Handmade Pasta

Pasta is taken very seriously all over Italy, but in particular in Emilia Romagna.  As the famous film director Federico Fellini (who was from Emilia Romagna himself) said: “Life is a combination of two things: magic and pasta. If there is magic but there is no pasta, there is no life”. Yes, it’s that serious.

When people think of hand-made egg or filled pasta, they automatically think of Tagliatelle, Lasagne, Tortelloni, Tortellini, Ravioli. Little do they know that these are all traditional pasta types that form an integral part of Emilia Romagna’s gastronomic tradition and which have their roots in this very region. 

Pasta Tagliatelle Gnocchi Tagliatelle al Ragù Tortelloni being filled Tortelloni Tortelloni with Balsamic
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  • "A heartfelt thank you, Helena, for organising a truly memorable weekend for my husband and myself. We enjoyed every aspect of the 5* Gastronomy Experience from the wonderful meals to the pasta-making with Anna, tasting the difference between the Balsamic Vinegars and the truffle hunt. I could go on and on. Non of this would have been possible without your organisation, but what made it really special was your personal touch."

    Pier T. United Kingdom
    The 5* Gastronomy Experience

  • "Thank you once again VERY much for looking after us on our trip and for organising everything so perfectly. We spent a fantastic two days discovering the incredible food and the incredible cars. The fact that you accompanied us on our trip to Lamborghini made it even more special. The wives were also happy….which is the most important thing, even if they didn’t want to experience the exhilarating experience of a drive in a Lamborghini. Once again, thank you, thank you."

    Roman Z. Czech Republic
    Lamborghini Test Drive, Museum Visit & Food Tour

  • "What can I say but wow! We guys were supposed to be driving the Ferraris and our ‘gals’ were supposed to be cooking. It all got turned upside down – but in the best way possible. I am so glad you persuaded us to join in the cooking classes as they were great fun. We learnt so much, especially about the Balsamic Vinegars. I will never look at a bottle at the supermarket in the same way again. Thanks for making it a perfect couple of days for us. "

    Michel D. USA
    Ferrari Test Drive, Cooking with Barbara and Valeria, Balsamic Visit

  • "On behalf of the group, I would like to thank you so much for organising one of the most fascinating, instructive and creative days ever. The day truffle hunting and cooking with truffles was a total revelation. Now we can really appreciate why truffles are so costly. Thanks for sharing your knowledge with us, Helena, we are so much ‘gastronomically’ richer for the experience, especially since we work in the restaurant industry. It was really special. Thank you again. "

    Jutta B. Switzerland
    The Famous Truffle Hunt

  • "You have no idea how wonderful it was to surprise my wife with the 5* Gastronomy Experience and how thrilled she was with this kind of ‘full immersion’ into the food of Emilia. The organisation of all the Ham, Parmesan and Balsamic visits as well as the cookery courses was more than professional, because there was always some small detail and a personal touch that was prevalent throughout. It is an experience we will treasure forever. Thank you, thank you."

    Patrick & Wyn H. United Kingdom
    The 5* Gastronomy Experience

  • "Thank you so much for organising the ‘Mastering Gelato’ course for my family, which was fantastic. The accommodation with Cristina and Umberto was lovely and the views stunning. We are all ‘gelato’d’ out at home – our daughters are so enthusiastic and our kitchen has almost become a gelato-making laboratory! I wish we had stayed longer and done the full day course, but I guess it’s a great excuse to come back!"

    Miranda R. United Kingdom
    Mastering Gelato

  • "An incredible experience! Delicious food! Amazing wine! I had never heard of the Bologna wines, but I have to say they are a revelation. I have ordered 4 cases of Pignoletto from the wine cellar we visited and I really look forward to opening them and sharing them at my birthday party shortly. Brilliant organisation and a wealth of knowledge. Next time I’ll be back for a few more days for an altogether ‘deeper’ experience. Thank you."

    Matthias & Rosa F. Germany
    Wines of the Bolognese Hills

  • "The Emilia experience was a rare treat. Your knowledge of the foods, products and wines of the region as well as your passion and enthusiasm are praiseworthy, Helena. The whole experience felt truly exclusive and getting to see that famous rock-group that my kids like at the Lamborghini factory and take a photo was just the best. We’ll be back to get our hands on those eggs and flour soon!"

    Marty & Mari D. USA
    Lamborghini Factory Tour, Parmesan, and Balsamic Tour

  • "We just wanted to say how much fun we had doing the Classic Emilia cooking course and also wanted to thank you for organising everything, down to the last detail, with such short notice. We really learnt some amazing recipes and my Bolognese sauce or ‘Ragù’ has taken on a whole new lease of life. I would love to come back with a group of friends and organise a longer and more in-depth food experience. Keep us posted on what you’re doing! Thanks again."

    Belinda S. United Kingdom
    Classic Emilia Cookery Course

  • "We know you organise lots of these various courses and experiences, but we wanted to thank you for making us make feel unique and special during our two day stay in the Bologna hills. Your knowledge of all the foods and products is amazing, but most of all, the attention to your guests is so personal it is almost as though you are personalising everything at every moment to how we are feeling and reacting. We are getting older, so don’t know if another European trip is on the cards, but we will certainly spread the ‘Yummy Italy’ word among our friends."

    Deepak & Lydia S. USA
    The 5* Gastronomy Experience

  • "On behalf of my group, thank you a hundred times for the perfect days we spent in Bologna and Modena. Driving the Ferraris into the hills was a totally exhilarating experience, eating the amazing food and (for those not driving) tasting the really delicious wines was wonderful. You are right, next time we’ll bring our wives so that they can learn how to cook the fantastic pasta! We’ll drive the cars again! See you soon!"

    Adriaan L., & company, Netherlands
    Ferrari rental, Wines of the Bolognese Hills

  • "Just to say how enlightening the ‘Taste of Yummy Bologna’ walking tour was. Our guide was incredibly knowledgeable and who knew that delicious pasta could be inspired by Venus’ navel and golden hair? The secret of Neptune in Piazza Maggiore was really funny too. Seriously though, this one day tour is a true full immersion of the best food in Bologna. Worth every penny and definitely a reason to come back and do a proper cookery course. Thank you."

    Betje & Frans K. & family, Netherlands
    A Taste of Yummy Bologna

  • "Organising my 50th birthday party in a Bolognese medieval tower was a risk that paid off. I am so glad that I listened to your advice. Thank you so much for organising a truly perfect event – a wonderful Bologna food tour, some amazing tastings, but most of all, all the tiny details that made it a truly memorable birthday weekend for my guests and myself."

    Arndt B. Germany
    Corporate Events

  • "My colleagues and I are all self-confessed wine snobs, but we were so glad you persuaded us to explore and taste the local wines. They were surprisingly good and should definitely get more publicity. Thank you so much for organising the Parmesan and Balsamic Vinegar visits too and the food tastings with the wine. The Balsamic, above all, was a true revelation and perfect for wine snobs such as myself and the group!"

    Jean-Marie T. & group, France
    Wines of the Bolognese Hills, Parmesan, and Balsamic Tour

  • "That’s it. We are hooked on truffles. What an awesome experience! Gianluca, the truffle hunter was so friendly and his wonderful dogs were incredibly talented. I’m so glad that we managed to find some truffles too. Thank you for explaining everything so thoroughly. We’ll be back to learn to cook with them soon! "

    Gary & Zelda G. USA
    The Famous Truffle Hunt

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Hand-made egg pasta is not just a tradition, it is a way of life. Grandmothers’ pasta-making skills are fought over by their grandchildren at school.  There are pasta-maker (sfogline) associations where the ‘sfogline’ are judged according to their ability to make Tortellini with their little fingers. There is an officially correct width for Tagliatelle as well as official recipes for both Ragù alla Bolognese and Tortellini, specified by the Bologna Chamber of Commerce. People compete over the length of their rolling-pins. 

A wedding isn’t a wedding without the presence of Tortellini in Brodo on the menu. Award-winning chefs not only from all over the world but from all over Italy come to the region to learn how to make the authentic product. 




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Traditional Handmade Pasta

Half Day Course - Approx. 4 Hours

This is a unique course which will teach you how to make hand-made pasta from scratch, using only flour and egg for the pastry as is traditionally required. You will learn the basic doses, how to whisk the flour into the egg (and not the reverse), knead the dough to the right texture and then roll it out into thin sheets using a rolling-pin. Why a rolling-pin and not a pasta machine?  Because, according to Emilia Romagna’s locals, as well as its Michelin star chefs, ‘genuine’ egg pasta mustn’t be smooth, it mustn’t be completely uniform and it must have a slightly rough surface. Why? Because that way the sauce or condiment ‘sticks’ better to the pasta, making the whole pasta eating experience so much more emotional.

All classes begin with a food map of Emilia Romagna and an overview of the agricultural and gastronomic history and traditions of the region, during which you will learn why Emilia Romagna is famous for its three primary staples - wheat, pork and milk. 

Together with an expert pasta maker (sfoglina), you will learn how to make the following pasta shapes and dishes and how to close them:

  • Tagliatelle - the ribbon-like egg pasta traditionally eaten with Ragù alla Bolognese
  • Stricchetti - butterfly shapped pasta which can be eaten with any sauce and loved by children
  • Tortelloni – the traditional stuffed pasta hailing from Bologna, filled with spinach & parsley

You will also receive the recipe for making Ragù Bolognese, the traditional meat sauce that no self-respecting Emilian household can be without and to be served with Tagliatelle (this takes 6 - 8 hours to make properly... and don't let anyone tell you otherwise!) and you will learn a classic condiment for the traditional Tortelloni as well as a seasonal condiment for Stricchetti. 

At the end of your course you will sit down to dine on your hard-earned efforts with a glass of excellent local wine (and an overview of the wines of the region). 

The course takes place about 10 minutes from the centre of Bologna by taxi or bus and is easily reachable by car with good parking facilities.