Our Cooking Class LocationThe Place and its Kitchens
Of course we’re biased, but the endearingly romantic qualities that attracted us to our 15th century watermill 20 years ago – Il Mulino di Ferraia - work their witchy spell on just about everyone.
Positioned on the oldest Roman Road in Italy (Cassia Vetus) - Rome to Florence, 20 km east of a whole bunch of intriguingly characteristic Apennine villages and the beautiful Medieval city of Arezzo, 35 km West of Florence and the Chianti wine territory, in the lusciously green and olive-oil famed Valdarno – Valley of The Arno River. The local market town of Reggello, nominated “Città dell’Olio”, in recognition of the quality of the olive oil produced in the territory, is 4 kms from Il Mulino with the spectacular backdrop of forested hills rising in 10 kms to the 1000 metre high forest of white firs around the Abbey of Vallombrosa put on the map in the 1700’s by the English Romantic Poet William Wordsworth.
Furnished with an eclectic mix of antiques and engravings, we have nudged and nurtured the inherent ‘soul-place’ potential of Il Mulino; rooms to eat, reflect, read and cook, outnumber those for sleeping.
Cooking is intrinsic to our lifestyle. The thrill of the season’s crops and culinary potential is everywhere evident: shelves curtseying to the weight of midnight--made conserves capturing the moment of balmy summer-day gluts of fruit: sticky-fig and grappa, kiwi, pear and ginger, mountain apple and vanilla bean; kilns of veggie-plot tomato sauce; baskets of garden walnuts; wild wayside herbs, and always an ever-changing Still-Life of the day’s pick of seasonal vegetables.
Marble-top tables tempt ‘poppers-in’ with newly sourced locally produced gastronomic finds – squidgy white wild-flower rolled goats cheeses, truffle-laced salami, fennel flavoured sausage, ‘neighbourly-exchange -tarts’, freshly baked heirloom bread (our 120 year old sourdough)
THE LIFESTYLE KITCHEN
Whatever the time of day, there’s always something baking, bubbling, rising or being tasted, in one of Il Mulino’s two kitchens whether there is a cooking lesson or not. Our culinary enthusiasm has expanded us beyond our characteristic mill-house kitchen, walk-in larders, and two-and-a-half metre marble top table (fabulous for kneading bread and rolling pasta and gnocchi), into an additional professional restaurant-style kitchen.
Cooking class participants get to use both these fully equipped kitchens.