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Jennifer L

The experience of a lifetime!!!!

5.0 of 5 bubblesReviewed 28 Aug 2015via mobile
This Tuscan cooking class vacation was an experience of a lifetime!!! Chef Paola was amazing!! She not only taught us so many authentic Italian cooking techniques and personal recipes, but shared the history and the memories that each meal represented in her life. She is a very inspiring woman filled with a passion for cooking and a passion for life!! Sheenah the hostess/manager truly made the whole experience fantastic! She is a very special woman and made us feel right at home in this beautiful villa. This is honestly the most breathtaking place I have ever been to and it was a life changing experience for me! I will remember it always!!
- Jennifer
Date of stay: August 2015
Trip type: Travelled with family
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Reviewed 20 August 2015

When I was looking for a holiday destination I thought 'I like Cooking' and 'I like travelling' so when I saw Tuscookany's range of courses I thought 'this should be fun'. But I was wrong it wasn't just fun, it was in fact the best holiday I have ever had!
I travelled from the other side of the world to do the week long Mediterranean course, but as soon as I arrived at Casa Ombuto I knew I was in a place that I would not want to leave. Sheenah and the staff made us feel welcome and were always there to help ant way they could, even finding someone in town to give me a haircut!
Then came the hard work slaving in the kitchen! Just kidding, my vocabulary isn't extensive enough to explain how much I enjoyed my time learning from our wonderful chef Laura, but I couldn't imagine a more passionate and patient teacher.
Apart from myself there were 10 other wonderful travellers from all over the world on the course. Over the week I had the opportunity of working with each of them and in the evening getting to know them and I would now consider each of them a friend.
The greatest praise I can give the course is that I am already planning my next trip there!

Date of stay: June 2015
  • Trip type: Travelled solo
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
1  Thank Phillip T
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Reviewed 20 August 2015

My expectations were very high for Casa Ombuto and they were definitively exceeded. Our family's week there was so much fun and will be one of the most memorable family vacations we have ever taken. As everyone notes, Paola is a magician in the kitchen and her personality is exactly what you're looking for in an Italian cooking instructor. Her passion for her work is beyond evident. The villa itself is great, tucked away into the countryside near Poppi with all of the amenities you'd want (a great pool, small spa, amazing views, etc.). In terms of service, there is a true "this is your home for the week" policy, where Sheena & staff really do a great job at making you feel comfortable.

If you and your family loves cooking, eating delicious food & wine, meeting great people, and enjoying beautiful views (i.e., you are humans), then don't hesitate to make a trip here!!

One minor caution - internet in the countryside can be pretty unreliable, so don't expect to be doing a ton of downloading files or streaming video. But use it as an opportunity to really disconnect! Second minor caution (Americans only, really) - no AC in the villas, just fans. Can be somewhat hot if you're going in the summer.

Date of stay: August 2015
  • Trip type: Travelled with family
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
1  Thank Louis L
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Reviewed 18 August 2015

Along with my family, I just returned from Casa Ombuto and it was the best vacation ever! It was hard to believe that every prior review gave it 5 stars, so we were a bit skeptical. But to our delight, it exceeded 5 stars. We had the villa to ourselves and it was magnificent. Our cooking instructor, Paola and her staff were over the top. Paola was a wonderful teacher, instructive, patient and the food she taught us to cook, which we consumed with great wine, were so delicious Sheenah was a great hostess and all our needs were taken care of. Anyone who is considering going to Italy, taking cooking lessons and just having fun, should definitely to Casa Ombuto. You won’t be disappointed.

Date of stay: August 2015
  • Trip type: Travelled with family
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Thank ericlH9638RW
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Reviewed 17 August 2015

I'm not sure why it has taken me this long to write about Casa Ombuto. I think I somehow knew it would be impossible to put the magically experience into words and do it justice. Casa Ombuto is a truly special place, and the aura it has is nothing short of phenominal. But I've now resolved that it will be impossible to accurately descibe the experience, and I'm ok with that.

On the afternoon we arrived, we knew from the rugged gravel drive and small sign with an olive branch and the words "Casa Ombuto", to Sheenah's warm and inviting welcome. We knew all the reviews we had read countless times were completely true. We arrived in our room for the week, found a chilled bottle of prosecco waiting for us, and from that point on the week was spectacular. The weather was great so we slept with the windows open. On our first night it rained.....and it was perfect. Sleeping in a 17th century villa listening to the Tuscan rain fall outside was heaven. On some nights with the windows open, you can even hear wild boar foraging in the yard and nearby fields.

The meal on the first night was a wonderful bistecca, prepared by our intructor for the week, Paola. I say instructor, but she was much, much more than that. She's tough in the kitchen, warm in her heart, and always filled with laughter and caring. Paola is beautiful inside and out. She's a special lady and we are so much better for having the privilege of spending a week with her.

The mornings are spent drinking coffee, eating breakfast and visiting with the other guests. Part of the experience for us was to meet people from other areas and to get to know them. We made friends and before long, it was like we'd known each other for years. Sheenah was always there to help us, and we loved getting to know her. My wife and I loved to listen to her. She's a beautiful lady and a wonderful host.

The afternoons are spent in the kitchen. After a briefing session of the day's menu, it's all hands on deck in the kitchen. Make no mistake, this is not a leisurely cooking time in the kitchen. I considered it the closest thing I will probably ever experience to cooking in a working restaurant kitchen. It is fast paced, and at times hectic, but always fun and exciting. Paola will test you, and get you out of your comfort zone, and you will love it!

Casa Ombuto, Paola, Sheenah, the other guests, the excursions, the day off in Tuscany (I even played golf while I was there), and last, but certainly not least, the food, everything about this vacation was perfect. I know when I read all of these reviews that were all basically saying the same things, I thought "How could this be?"

Trust us.....it be!

Room tip: Any room will be fantastic.
Date of stay: October 2014
  • Trip type: Travelled as a couple
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Service
Thank Chris L
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Reviewed 15 August 2015

We enjoyed a 7 day italian cooking course and vacation in July at Casa Ombuto..
It was an amazing and thoroughly enjoyable experience. A beautiful location, marvelous views, comfortably accommodation with incredible warm staff who made our stay memorable. The cooking classes were lively run by chef Paola.. She made cooking fun with a serious under tone! We met interesting people and had a fantastic time as a group. Highly recommend the holiday !

Date of stay: July 2015
  • Trip type: Travelled as a couple
    • Location
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Thank 50holiday
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
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