“There’s something so evocative about being in the Italian country side and working with regional product. It speaks volumes to what I love about food. There is a soul that exists there that comes through in the workshops.”
— Naomi Pomeroy

Chef Naomi Pomeroy

JULY 20-27, 2019

with friends Nancy Silverton & Ellen Laing


James Beard Award Winning Chef and owner of acclaimed Portland restaurant, Beast, comes back to Villa Montecastello to share her passion and cook together with you straight from the farm.

Join Naomi Pomeroy, award winning chef of Portland’s Beast and Expatriate, for an unforgettable culinary adventure and intimate, hands on week of cooking in the romantic Tuscan countryside. Based on her cookbook, Taste & Technique, which The New York Times calls one of the best of 2016, and which won a coveted IACP award for food photography and styling, Naomi will share her knowledge, teaching the foundations and building blocks to become a master home cook, with a focus not just on making incredibly delicious food, but also on how to compose and style your meals for the
most impressive outcome. Inspired by her lifelong passion for flowers and plants, and the opening of her new floral design studio, Colibri, Naomi will also lead a flower workshop and share her unique perspective on creating unique composed arrangements.

Naomi will be joined on the retreat by her friend and mentor, Nancy Silverton, who will lead the group on a day trip to visit the famed butcher of Panzano, Dario Cecchini, at his 8th generation shop, Antica Macelleria Cecchini. A two time James Beard Award winning chef, Nancy Silverton is in very rare company. In 2014 she won the James Beard Award for Outstanding Chef (their most prestigious award) and in 1990 for the Best Pastry Chef of the Year. During Nancy’s legendary career, she has re-defined dessert as the head pastry chef at the iconic Spago and Campanile in southern California, brought artisanal bread to the US as founder of La Brea bakery, opened her acclaimed Mozza restaurants, written many cookbooks, and launched her own gelato line, Nancy’s Fancy, to name a few. It will be such a thrill to travel with Nancy to Panzano to meet Dario and break bread together.

Naomi’s dear friend and talented Pastry Chef, Ellen Laing, will lead dessert workshops throughout the week, sharing inspiration and tips on how to turn out the most sublime and seasonal pastries. Ellen was head pastry chef at Naomi’s restaurants and helped her write the dessert section of her cookbook.

The setting for this week will be the immaculately restored 11th century luxury agriturismo, Villa Montecastello, a working organic farm and olive grove, perched high atop a hillside with the dreamiest country views.  The villa has been immaculately renovated to offer its visitors an authentic luxury experience in Tuscany centered around food and wine.  Located one hour south of Florence, the Villa is surrounded by olive groves, with vineyards and nature reserves at its base.  Your week spent in this storybook setting will be complemented by magical day trips and wonderful wines.


Saturday: Arrival to Villa Montecastello. Light lunch. Time to relax and explore. Welcome farm tour. Sunset Prosecco reception and welcome fish dinner at Villa Montecastello cooked by Naomi, Ellen and villa owner, Jens Schmidt.

Sunday: Breakfast. Morning cooking class. Head into the farm to pick seasonal vegetables and eggs for the morning class, Mastering the Souffle. Lunch at Villa Montecastello. Free time for swimming, hiking, reading. Afternoon Pasta Class. Dinner at Villa Montecastello.

Monday: Breakfast. Late morning trip to Montalcino for a winery tour and Brunello tasting. Lunch in Montalcino with some time to explore the town. Afternoon cooking demo, Grill Night Prep. Dinner at Villa Montecastello: Grill night!

Tuesday: Breakfast. Morning cooking class. Bright Summer Grain Salad & Taratar, followed by lunch at Villa Montecastello. Afternoon dessert workshop with Pastry Chef Ellen Laing: Chocolate Pots de Creme, Panna Cotta, Honey Pie. Free time to relax before dinner out at a favorite local trattoria.

Wednesday: Breakfast. Morning visit to a local cheesemaker for a tour, tasting and lunch. Afternoon Tuscan Table Flower Workshop with Naomi. Cooking class using local beef & Tuscan tomatoes. Dinner at Villa Montecastello with pastries from yesterdays workshop.

Thursday: Breakfast. All day trip to Florence with lunch and dinner out on your own.

Friday: Breakfast. Nancy Silverton joins the group to lead a trip to Panzano to visit her friend, the famed butcher Dario Cecchini, at his 8th generation butcher shop, Antica Macelleria Cecchini. Lunch at Antica Macelleria Cecchini. Back to Villa Montecastello to soak in the last day. Pizza Party night at Villa Montecastello – make your own pizza in a restored 1000 year old outdoor oven under the guidance of a local Pizzaiolo.

Saturday: Breakfast and departure for airport.

All Inclusive Accommodations

The week includes 7 overnight accommodations at Villa Montecastello, 7 breakfasts, 6 lunches, 6 dinners, all local transportation as described in the itinerary including airport pickup and drop off  at Florence airport.  Daily breakfast buffet includes locally baked goods and produce, fruit, coffee, tea and juice.  Also included are all of the materials for cooking classes, wine tours and tasting.  Unlimited bottled water (sparkling and flat) at villa.  House wine with lunch and dinners from our expertly curated house selection, plus all fine wines for tastings and winery tours. 

Not included in pricing: Airfare, all extra beverages, additional transportation outside of itinerary.

Each room is uniquely furnished with the utmost attention to detail.  All rooms offer luxury hand ironed linens,  hand made olive oil soap and shampoo, fresh cut flowers and air conditioning.  Villa Montecastello offers 8 room options of varying sizes and pricing, each is filled with beautiful antiques,  warmth and charm.  The Villa Montecastello has many shared sitting areas both inside and out, and a library filled with books about Italy, food and wine.


  • Frantoio Suite: $6600 per person for double occupancy - Our most romantic room, beautifully appointed with a King size canopy bed and ensuite bathroom with claw foot tub

  • Pendolino Studio: $6300 per person for double occupancy, $6900 per person for single occupancy - A charming studio with Queen bed, private ensuite bathroom with shower only and kitchenette

  • Foresteria Room: $6300 per person for double occupancy, $6900 per person for single occupancy - A beautiful large bedroom with King bed or two Twin beds and private ensuite bathroom

  • Moraiolo Bedrooms #1 & #2: $6000 per person for double occupancy, $6600 per person for single occupancy - Cozy and lovely rooms with private bathrooms across the hallway, just a few steps outside the room. Bedroom #1 has the option for a King bed or two Twin beds. Bedroom #2 has a Queen bed.

  • Frantoio Bedrooms #1 & #2: $5700 per person for double occupancy, $6300 per person for single occupancy - These two beautifully appointed rooms share an extra-large bathroom with a separate room for shower and toilet for added privacy, one of the rooms offer a Queen Bed and one offers option of King or two Twins. Perfect for friends who want their own rooms but don’t mind sharing a bathroom.

Click for more on Naomi Pomeroy.

*Note for online bookings a booking fee of 3% is included in the pricing.
For questions or to book direct email us or call 973.327.2336