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Cooking your way through Europe

Cooking schools, cuisine classes, and culinary courses

Rather than just taking home from your next trip tales of that fantastic tagliatelle alla bolognese in Italy or the blanc de veau you ate in Paris, why not return with the skills to recreate all those great European meals in your own kitchen?

Cooking schools and cooking classes while traveling—whether for an afternoon or a full week—are becoming all the rage, and it's not hard to see why. You're getting the kind of genuine cultural insight no number of churches and museums could ever give, you're engaging with the locals on something about which they are truly passionate, and you're gaining a new skill (or at least new recipes to add to your repertoire). And, of course, you get to eat all your mistakes (mmmm...mistakes).

Like I said, you can learn to cook in Europe on every kind of course from a top-flight culinary school—such as France's famed Le Cordon Bleu in Paris (—to posh and popular tourist-oriented cooking courses, such as, in Italy, the courses run by cookbook authors Lorenza de' Medici in her medieval Tuscan monastery (, Giuliano Bugialli in Florence (, or Mary Beth Clark in Bologna (

Several websites collects lists of various kinds of culinary adventures out there, from one-day classes to one-week courses, full-fledged tours to agriturismi with a cooking program, including Epiculinary ( and partners ( and InfoHub (


Intrepid Travel

This article was last updated in January 2007. All information was accurate at the time.

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Copyright © 1998–2010 by Reid Bramblett. Author: Reid Bramblett.