Story Land & Sea®

Treasures of Italy
with Chef Mario Batali


About Chef Mario Batali

Chef Mario Batali

Chef Treks paired with Story Land & Sea® to create an adventure that combines the love of the slow food movement with the passion of Italy and the expertise of Chef Batali.

This experience will begin with a few days of sight-seeing in Florence, then a journey through the Tuscan countryside leading to a three day stay in a villa in Cortona at a winery estate. In addition to the planned culinary experiences with Chef Batali, you will also enjoy our unique approach to dining at select restaurant venues, as well as hands-on chef sessions teaching you about dinner planning and pairing. The Story Way® of dining features your Story Tour Captain, who will select a variety of appetizers featuring the best of regional cuisine from around Italy, along with unique red and white wine varietals. Then you will be presented with the menu that has been planned throughout the journey for each special dining experience. Each day brings with it a new discovery and experience with Chef Batali.

Raised in Seattle, Mario attended high school in Madrid and studied the golden age of Spanish theater at Rutgers University. Soon after graduating, Mario enrolled in Le Cordon Bleu in London, his first formal culinary training. But after a few short months, he withdrew to apprentice with London's legendary chef Marco Pierre White. During three years of intense culinary training in the Northern Italian village of Borgo Capanne (population 200), Mario learned the essential skills to return to his native US eager to plant his orangeclad foot firmly on the checkered-tablecloth Italian restaurant establishment.

After having gained momentum on the New York restaurant scene at beloved neighborhood joints including Rocco's and Po, Mario teamed up with Joe Bastianich to open Babbo Ristorante e Enoteca on Waverly Place in 1998. There he realized his cooking philosophy: use the best local ingredients as simply as possible and serve them with flourish and joy. As a Tuscan cooks in Chianti, as a Neapolitan cooks on the Amalfi coast, as a Sicilian cooks in Pantelleria, at Babbo Mario cooked as an Italian might in the Hudson Valley region

Story® & Chef Treks® — The Partnership of Passion

Story Land & Sea®'s unique off-the-beaten-path dining experiences provide an immersion into authentic regional Italian food and wine. Chef Mario Batali will select and create a variety of appetizers, featuring regional cuisine, and will select your vino for the evening: a variety of red and white wine from the Tuscan region, and yes, "the wind flows".

Story of the Slow Food Movement: Story Land & Sea® is committed to the Slow Food Movement, which was founded by Carlo Petrini in Peidmont, Italy in 1986. This "movement" strives to preserve traditional and regional cuisine, and encourages the farming of plants, seeds, and livestock characteristic to the local ecosystems found throughout Italy.

First-Time Italy traveler's perfect itinerary: Treasures of Italy: Culinary Imersion Tour with Chef Mario Batali

Chef Mario Batali
Chef Mario Batali

Chef Treks® and I would like to extend our personal invitation for you to join Chef Mario Batali on the trip of a lifetime, and one you won't soon forget. If you've ever been to Italy, then you can relate to this sentiment - Italy is a place that, once you've been, it never quite leaves you. It becomes part of your very being, always there, whispering to you like a long-lost friend, wanting you to stop in for a visit.

Good Travels,

Mark Story




Day 1: May 12: International Flight Date

Today, you will depart the home airport on your Trans-Atlantic flight bound for Florence, Italy. Your flight is not included but you can request a best-rate fare from our Air Service. Or call today 1 (877) 865-6711. 

Note: Day 1 is the published tour date and is the date you will arrange your air travel. Your small group tour commences on itinerary Day 2 upon arrival into Florence, Italy.

Day 2: May 13: Florence

Split, Croatia

Arrive in Beautiful Italy!

Your Chef Treks Adventures begins today with Story's® itinerary commencing at 3:00PM at our hotel in Florence. Located on beautiful Piazza Santa Maria Novella is our collection of luxury hotels where your StoryTou r Captain meets you for the included Florence Orientation Walkabout. Tonight enjoy a fabulous welcome dining experience featuring Chef Mario Batali.   

Day 3: May 14: Florence

Split Old Town, Croatia

Florence Sightseeing Immersion Today join your Tour Captain and our local guide on a specially-guided tour of the city of Florence complete with our Special Access sightseeing immersion. Enjoy a special experience tonight with Chef Mario in a unique venue.

Day 4: May 15: Porretta Terme

Beginnings: We board our vehicle bound for Porretta Terme in the region of Emilia Romagna this morning.

Today enjoy cuisine from Emilia-Romagna which is known for some of the finest in all of Italy.

Dubrovnik, Bosnia


Day 5: May 16: Cortona, Tuscany

Kotor, Montenegro

This morning we leave the city and delve deep into the heart of Tuscany. Our first stop is the hill-top village of San Gimignano. We will toast to the arrival into the countryside. Enjoy our in-depth experience at our winery estate in the heart of Tuscany. Join your Chef host along with your Tour Captain for a special welcome dinner at one of our favorite restaurants in Cortona.

Day 6: May 17: Market Visit

Athens, Greece

Soak in the morning as we enjoy a walk through the market as Chef Mario selects the very best produce and ingredients as well as provides context to help you with your own selections in the future. This afternoon perhaps a walk through the vineyards, or a hike up to the castle or a leisurely stroll through the piazza and cobbled streets of Siena. Join Chef Mario and your host team for a special dinner in Siena. Then we return to our villa.

Day 7: May 18: Tuscany

Enjoy a day at leisure and then tonight we gather for a special finale on the grounds of our estate. Join Chef Mario for a special farewell event tonight.

Day 8: May 19: Arrividerci Italy!

Santorini, Greece

Departure day: Transfer to the airport (optional) or extend your journey through Bella Italy.


Extend your Story Adventure!

Owner Mark Story likes to describe this 3 day and night extension to the 'Enchanted Amalfi Coast' as an opportunity to "recover from the Treasures of Italy tour." Well, we're not sure how much actual recovery is needed from the epic journey, but the Amalfi Coast, just like the headline implies, is always a good idea.

The extension as a whole includes not just the Amalfi Coast, but also the Sorrento Peninsula (where we make our home for the 3 days and nights), and the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Pompeii — complete with skip-the-line admission and our Story Expert Italian Guide.

A special welcome dinner is included in Sorrento at one of Mark's favorites, and then two days of flex time to soak up the coast. Most Story guests opt for Day 2's special "Isle of Capri & Amalfi Coast Highway" optional excursion, and then use the 3rd day for a time to on the coast. More excursions are available, but Mark cautions guests to "not fill up every waking moment."

Santorini, Greece


The Adventure Begins.
"Spending these 3 days on the Amalfi Coast & Sorrento Peninsula was the perfect finale to our Italy vacation. I will return one day! Thank you!"

Discover the Amalfi Coast and Sorrento Peninsula with our special Pompeii Experience included in 2018! From our boutique hotel in Sorrento to the unique welcome dining experience, this one is the perfect culmination of your travels through Italy. Enjoy optional excursions to the Isle of Capri and the Amalfi Coast.

• 3 Nights Accommodation in botique hotel in Sorrento
• World-Class UNESCO World Heritage Site,Pompeii Experience with admission and our privately guided tour.
• Enjoy daily breakfast at our hotel properties.
• A special Welcome to the Amalfi Coast & Sorrento Peninsula Dinner at one of our favorite restaurants in all of Italy on the first evening.
• Baggage handling, hotel taxes, hotel service charges (items of a personal nature not included).
• Deluxe, air-conditioned microcoach or private car with panoramic windows & comfortable seats.
• Services of our Tour Captain® or Story Local Host® and Expert Italian Guide in Pompeii.
• Quality, centrally located hotel properties, authentic Italian culture and style with private baths, all non-smoking.

Santorini, Greece

Treasures of Italy
Chef Mario Batali

Pricing is per person and in US dollars. Includes all meals taxes and fees, and traditional Chef Treks and Story receptions.

Story Land & Sea®'s Tour includes: 
• Daily full, hot American Breakfast
• Story Land & Sea® Exclusives per itinerary
• Traditional Welcome Reception
• Farewell Reception 

In US Dollars

Published Date Price Per Person
May 12, 2018 Departure $6779
Call 1(877) 865-6711 or email us today!



Treasures of Italy
Chef Mario Batali




What questions do you have?: