Cork & Fork: Wine and Food of Northern Italy

      4 reviews
      Jun 24 - Jul 2, 2023
      Group size: 8 - 21
      Cork & Fork: Wine and Food of Northern Italy

      4 reviews

      Jun 24 - Jul 2, 2023
      Group size: 8 - 21

      About this trip

      CORK & FORK:  Wine and Food of Northern Italy
      Join Eleven Winery and Bainbridge Island based Cross Cultural Journeys on a remarkable food and wine experience to Northern Italy. The tour will take us from Milan in the North, South/Southwest to Piemonte, onwards to Genoa, East to Emilia Romagna and into Tuscany's Florence and a day tour to Siena. We will explore the wines of Northern Italy, from the red Barolo, the Spumante and Moscato of Piemonte; to the Lambruscos of Emilia Romagna and the Chiantis of Tuscany. An extension will also be offered to those who would like to spend a few extra days to visit Rome or one of Italy's many famous beach resorts. Unlike most wine and food tours, we will  immerse ourselves in the Italian culture, and visit with the Italian people in their communities. We will learn about Italy's cooperative movement; visit the Parmesan factory and some other world famous brands. Most importantly, we will explore the many ways Italy is growing grapes and producing organic wines - some of the leading in the world market. And of course - lots of amazing pasta and pizza!


      Day One: Arrive in Milan
      Day Two: Milan
      Day Three: Piemonte
      Day Four: Genoa > Reggio Emilia
      Day Five: Emilia Romagna / Parmigiano Reggiano
      Day Six: Reggio Emilia > Florence
      Day Seven: Florence
      Day Eight: Day trip to Siena
      Day Nine: Departure from Florence > Home (or extended stay to Rome)

      Day Ten: Florence > Rome
      Day Eleven: Rome
      Day Twelve: Rome > Home

      Journey Highlights

      * Learn from local wine makers and culinary experts and chefs about wine and food culture

      * Visit wineries; farms and tasting rooms
      * Learn about the growing of organic grapes; producing organic wine

      * Pairings with Italian and international cuisines 
      * Learn about get the intersections between cooperative management, entrepreneurship, environmental stewardship and cultural preservation in the Emilia Romagna region

      * Explore some Italian history & architecture
      * Understand Italian cultural values and our own cultural biases 

      * Immerse ourselves in Italian food & drink, visit amazing cultural treasures, speak some Italian and have a lot of fun!

      * The extended journey to Rome will include visits to the Colosseum; The Spanish Steps; Forum Romana; and other cultural treasures in the country's capital

      Journey Details:


      Early bird discounts are available for bookings until June 30th. Please enter "EARLYBIRD" in the discount code box, and let us know who your Happiness Engineer is.

      INCLUDED: All accommodations (double or multiple occupancy; or single room for a supplemental fee); full breakfast daily at the hotels, 3 lunches and 3 dinners per final itinerary (B, L, D); local guides; guest speakers; all wine tastings per itinerary; all activities and entrance fees on itinerary; preparation materials; transportation/coach bus; bottled water; one CCJ trip manager;  two Eleven Winery co-hosts. 


      CCJ will funnel $100 per traveler to the Cross Cultural Journeys Foundation to support an Italian not-for-profit or charitable organization (TBA).

      NOT INCLUDED: International air travel from USA to Italy; airport transfers; alcoholic drinks not on the itinerary; extra wine at wine tastings; meals not on itinerary. Excursions not on the itinerary; tips for local guide and driver (optional, yet customary); travel protection insurance.  

      TRAVEL PROTECTION: Cross Cultural Journeys is not responsible for cancellation expenses that you might incur before or during our trip.  You may want to check first to see if your current insurance policy covers travel abroad, but we have found that most do not. We strongly encourage considering taking out travel interruption and evacuation insurance to cover any emergencies abroad such as evacuation, or reimbursement for cancellation due to your own illness or an illness in your family. Some plans require you to take out this insurance within 21 days of your deposit to cover pre-existing conditions. CCJ has partnered with TravelSafe. You can visit our online portal to explore different plans. We encourage you to choose a plan covers travel interruption before you depart, as well as during the trip. CCJ is not responsible for events beyond our control in this regard.  

      Please visit the Cross Cultural Journeys - TravelSafe online portal to find a plan that works for you. You can also call TravelSafe directly at 1-800-523-8020. Make sure you mention that Cross Cultural Journeys is your tour operator to receive our special rates.

      Journey Leaders:

      Trip Manager Cilla Utne
      President, Cross Cultural Journeys

      Cilla acquired CCJ in 2015. With a B.A. in language and intercultural studies, and an MBA in Sustainability from Bainbridge Graduate Institute, Cilla is passionate about the intersections between sustainable behaviors and cultural values. In an earlier corporate career, she facilitated intercultural training programs for executives living and working across cultures. A native of Sweden and a world traveler, she has lived in Spain, the UK, Chile, and Guatemala. Cilla is based on Bainbridge Island since 2006, where she co-parents her teen son; practices yoga & meditation; and takes long walks with her French bulldog. She's currently working on the final draft of a memoir about her mother’s childhood, contemplating how unresolved trauma can impact future generations. This will be Cilla's third visit to Italy.


      Matt Albee

      Founder & Winemaker, Scientist. Chef. Bike racing fanatic.
      Eleven Winery

      It may seem unlikely, but winemaking brings aspects of all of these things together. Making great wine requires careful study, meticulous preparation, and long hours of hard work. Matt's deep experience in the lab, the kitchen, and on the road prepared him well for the day that he first wandered into the cellar, and emerged changed. Winemaking encompasses all that is important in life: respect for the earth, hard work and careful study, sharing experiences with friends and family. Matt lives with his wife and two sons on Bainbridge Island. He is very excited about this sharing this experience in Italy with Eleven's wine club members and his Bainbridge community.

      Alana Correll
      General Maneger, Eleven Winery

      Alana grew up on Bainbridge Island and graduated from BHS in 2007. She took a year off after high school to work and spent 4 months traveling in Ghana and Egypt. She attended culinary school at the Art Institute of Seattle and have worked for Eleven winery since June 2018. A mother to an almost 6-year-old son, she enjoys horseback riding, reading, hiking, travel, and (of course) food and wine! She has been to Italy once, but not since 2001. She is looking forward to going back as an adult and experiencing the rich culture and food while learning more about the wines and the wine industry of Northern Italy.

      Available Packages

      Wine Club Members
      Available until September 15, 2023Sold Out

      Price is based on double occupancy in best available accommodation.

      Deposit: $1,000
      Non-Wine Club Members
      Available until September 15, 2023Sold Out

      Price is based on double occupancy in best available accommodation.

      Deposit: $1,000
      Sold Out

      Eleven Winery Staff Free-of-Charge packet


      Available options


      Day 1 | June 24
      Arriving in Milan | Farm Dinner

      Bon Giorno, Milano! Make your way to our first farm stay to meet your fellow travelers. Located about 30 minutes outside of central Milan is Argiturismo Dolce Luna. This lush property includes a magnificent garden of olive groves, palm trees and fruit trees with free-roaming animals such as horses, geese, donkeys, goats, ostriches, cows and birds. Bring your swimwear! If you arrive early you can relax by the pool with an Aperol spritz! Dinner will be a farm-to-table dinner on the property.
      Sleep: Agriturismo Dolce Luna, Milan 

      Your Organizer

      Cross Cultural Journeys
      4 reviews
      For people interested in our planet and connections to the humans living on it. Cross Cultural Journeys provides socially and environmentally responsible travel experiences for individuals and organizations interested in global awareness, indigenous wisdoms and societies at the crossroads.


      What a wonderful adventure! My son and I had a great time traveling with our soccer community and had a chance to spend time with old friends and build new friendships as well. I personally loved the relaxed approach to travel and the openness to discovery. A big 'Thank you' to Cross Cultural Journeys for a memorable trip!
      By Heidi Umphenour for BIFC International Team Tour 2023 on Apr 19, 2023
      It was a good trip with lots of fun activités and sleeping arrangements were actually nice Maya Fletcher
      By Diane Patnode for BIFC International Team Tour 2023 on Apr 19, 2023
      Overall the trip was really fantastic, full of grand highlights and memories.
      By Finn McMasters for BIFC International Team Tour 2023 on Apr 18, 2023
      Great time. Loved the experience.
      By Michelle Knott for BIFC International Team Tour 2023 on Apr 13, 2023