Boat on the shoreCome and join us for an all-inclusive gastronomical tour of Sicily and its Aeolian islands. Over 7 nights and 6 days you’ll enjoy a truly authentic cooking and wine tasting experience, with a chance to explore the islands and their volcanoes! For this holiday we’ll be based on the island of Vulcano, visiting the nearby islands of Lipari and Salina with an optional visit to Stromboli. Please note the holiday does not include flights but everything else is included; the food and wine, the cooking lessons, fishing trips, wine tours and tastings and any other activities detailed within the itinerary.

Each week long adventure is run in small groups with a minimum of 6 people to a maximum of 10 people per tour. The holiday consists of 5 hands-on and indeed ‘hands-in’ cooking lessons, 1 cooking demonstration, wine tours, fishing trips and visits to local producers.

The cooking part of the holiday is relaxed and informal. Lessons will take place in family-run restaurants, steeped in tradition with recipes handed down through generations. This is authentic cooking which is to be found in the houses of the local Sicilian people as opposed to upmarket commercial locations. Throughout the week we’ll be using fresh organic local ingredients, sometimes homegrown.Fisherman fixing nets

The holiday is also as much about the wine as it is about the food. We’ll be introducing and discussing a new vineyard with each dining experience and of course sampling their wines. We’ll meet local wine experts and producers, with one day dedicated to wine tours.

All cooking classes are taught in Italian, but don’t worry if you don’t speak the language, native English translation will be provided in parallel, step by step. The holiday is suitable for cooks from novice to experienced. In either case, we are sure you will be inspired by ideas and recipes that you can recreate at home. Recipes will be printed for each cooking lesson so that by end of the week you will have a folder filled with ideas and inspiration to take home with you.

Where it all began

My grandmotherWith Aeolian Adventures you’ll meet a real cast of characters but your principal host is me, Laura. I was born in Puglia, in southern Italy, to an Italian father and English mother, and although I was brought up in England I returned to Italy most summers in the care of my grandmother, Nonna Giuseppina.

Every day at Nonna’s house would begin with “what do you want to eat today?”. Her cooking was the best I’ve ever tasted; simply cooked food but out of this world. Food in Italy is an expression of love and a representation of Italian culture. Nonna and I would pass the mornings in her kitchen, me happy to listen to her stories of cooking, and how important it was in finding a good husband. Her delighted to have a hungry helper with wrists to slap when I reached for another irresistible morsel before it was ready to share.

These memories of food have always been about the expression of love within the family and with friends. So that’s where it all began, my love of food and entertaining!My Italian heritage

In more recent years I’ve had the opportunity to discover the lovely Aeolian islands, staying at my family’s holiday home on the island of Vulcano. Captivated by my first visit, I’ve been returning every year and made many good friends within the local community.

Allow me and my gastronomic friends to share the love we have for these tiny islands and find out why, though forgotten in many ways to the modern world, they remind me of the simplicity of my grandmothers kitchen, as you discover the true taste of Sicily.

A more recent photo of Laura