From: October 19, 2018
To: October 23, 2018
October 19 – 23, 2018
Day 1 October 19, Friday
There is a transfer for guests arriving with either SAS or Norwegian. The coach will depart from Milano Malpensa airport at 13.00. The transfer to Cascina Desderi takes approximately two hours. After check-in, an arrival snack will be served in the gazebo – finger food and some wine. In the evening, a very special welcome to Piedmont dinner is served – where three of the courses will include Alba’s white gold – the white truffle. Wines from the Desderi-cellar will match each dish.
Day 2, October 20, Saturday
After a hearty breakfast, get ready to explore the wine country! A guided tour of the region includes a visit to Calamandrana – in the heart of the Barbera and Moscato district. We pay a visit to a small family run vineyard, and will sample the wines of Cascina Desderi from barrels and bottles. Adetailed presentation explains all the stages of the wine making process, from the pruning in February, to the crushing of the grapes after harvesting, to the final result in the bottle. The tour proceeds to Canelli into the Belbo Valley. From here we ascend the winding roads of the panorama route taking us via Treiso to Alba before entering the alluring Barolo district. The famous villages of Diano d’Alba and Grinzano Cavour lead us to the most famous of them all; Barolo. Here we enter the impressive courtyard of Marchesi di Barolo – the count of Barolo and his elegant winery. If the owners are at home, they will welcome us before entering the intimate dining room where a wine-luncheon has been prepared solely for us. Each dish is matched with the wines of the farm – five courses in total accompanied by four exquisite wines. The lunch is a typical slow-food experience – the main course having been cooked in Barolo wines for hours. The pasta will include white truffles. This lunch is a typical Italian pranzo – and a very sumptuous one – so no evening meal has been planned for today. If, however, a light bite is needed later in the evening, the chefs of Cascina Desderi will gladly prepare an evening meal. Alternatively, you can pay a visit to Ristorante Alla Piazza and sample the dishes of their Italian, International and Oriental buffet.
Day 3, October 21, Sunday
A new day, another breakfast and an exciting excursion – in the Kingdom of Wine and Savoia! The first stop this morning is the old town of Asti where we visit the impressive cathedral of Santa Maria Assunta. Then out of town, on small country roads through rustic villages to the hilltop village of Govone, in the Roero wine district. We pay a visit to a former Savoy Palazzo – proudly set on the very summit of the Govone village. From here we cross the Tanaro Vally and climb the Barbaresco Cliff – arriving at the wine village with its famous landmark; the Barbaresco Torre – the striking tower on the edge of the steep hillside. After this visit, we proceed deeper into the Barolo wine district and climb the winding roads to the highest located of the eleven Barolo villages; La Morra. On the sloping hill, amongst vineyards, we stop for lunch at the renowned Ristorante Bovio where a seven-course lunch is awaiting. Three different wines are paired with the seven courses of this exquisite meal – while six (!) of the dishes include the white truffle one way or another. This lunch is a typical Italian pranzo – where the appetizer is followed by pasta and then a secondo and dolce. This is a sumptuous meal that you feel in your body for hours and hours, so no evening meal is included today. The chefs of Cascina Desderi will gladly prepare some cheese, ham and salami if the hunger should return in the wee hours…
Day 4, October 22, Monday
Today we head towards Torino! Just after breakfast we take off in our comfortable coach – driving through Asti from east to west. On winding country roads we enter the long and flat plain of Po, surrounded by rolling hills and quaint villages. When we reach the last hill, then we see Torino at the foot of the collina. The elegant capital of Savoy, currently the capital of Piedmonte and for a while also the capital of Italy – the entire Italian nation! Here the Savoy kings had their palaces in and around the city, and the court served their kings and queens in this very city for hundreds of years. We start our tour at Superga, a summit towering above the city with sweeping vistas in all directions. On the very top the royal chapel and the Savoy Tombs are located. Here numerous of the Savoy kings and queens have been put to rest. After refreshments in the Chapel Bar (!), we descend to the city center, cross the river Po and get off near the elegant main street, at Via Roma. From here there is a short walk to most of the city’s sights; Palazzo Reale, Palazzo Madama, the Italian Film Museum and the Egyptian Museum – and maybe most important of all; Torino Cathedral with the shroud. The Juventus arena is just outside the city center to the west, while the Auto Museum is at the east side. We enjoy a light lunch at the Michelin star Ristorante del Cambio – Piemonte’s oldest restaurant, dating back to 1757. The recently deceased author, Umberto Eco, had this as his favorite restaurant while in Torino – and the main characters in his book “The Prague Cemetery” have a fictitious meeting at this place. The lunch is light, as today’s farewell dinner is on the abundant side. There will be time for shopping and exploring on Via Roma, before returning via the Autostrada to Cascina Desderi, with arrival around five o’clock. Time for relaxation before leaving for dinner – with a very special treat at first! On the way to Treiso and the Michelin star Ristorante La Ciau del Tornavento, we make a stop in Barbaresco and take the new elevator to the top of the Torre di Barbaresco – the landmark tower of the famous city of Nebbiolo wines. There are sweeping vistas from the top, and we will celebrate with bubbles – as we brought along Desderi’s Spumante Amici per Sempre. The Ciau del Tornavento is only minutes away, and we enjoy a memorable farewell dinner – where the famous white truffle pasta dish is included in the five-course-menu. Top off the evening with a digistivo and return to Cascina Desderi.
Day 5 October 23, Tuesday
A last farewell breakfast is served before boarding the coach for a transfer back to Malpensa airport.
An optional stay at Cascina Desderi, before transferring to Venice where we stay near the Grand Canal. Sightseeing by foot and vaporetto, then we board the Orient Express at the Santa Maria Stazione for an unforgettable day and night on the unrivaled Orient Express. Lunch is served through the Dolomites while dinner is offered in the vicinity of Innsbruck. Breakfast in Paris before disembarking in Paris. Two nights at an art deco hotel with extensive sightseeing during the day. Exact days to follow in 2018.More Details List of Tours
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