Tuesday, April 18

VLOG from ITALY: 007 - ROME...and a Roadtrip to Bologna


We're taking you to Rome on a Food Tour & Vespa Ride thru the city at dusk! VLOG from ITALY 007 - On a drive to Bologna we flashback to our last trip to Rome! We thought it'd be more interesting than the Autostrada! 

Food Tour thanks to Eating Europe Food Tours
Vespa Tour thanks to Scooteroma
WATCH VLOG from ITALY: 007 ROME


Incase you missed last week's - here's VLOG from ITALY episode 006


Tuesday, April 11

Dream of Living to Italy? This is Your Crash Course! October Workshop on Moving to Italy & Starting a Business



So you want to move to Italy and possibly start a hospitality/service (B&B, farmstay, inn or food & wine) business - where to begin?! This is your crash course! The first workshop in April SOLD OUT quickly so we are excited to offer another this October. Five days of food, wine and inspiration in Italy!

This is an honest, informative, humorous, engaging and inspiring series of seminars/lectures over the five days.

Even if you are planning for your retirement or holiday home it's all in the preparation and this intensive & intimate workshop will answer all your burning questions. We hope to provide you with a road map for this journey to make your dream of living in Italy a reality!

How to Move to Italy & Start a Business: 
OCTOBER 20-24, 2017

The mornings will be spent doing activities at the farmhouse with time to explore the area. Then return to the for apertivi and interactive seminars before dinner. The seminars/workshops will be broken into 3 Phases: Preparation , Transition & Execution:

  • How to Start a Business in Italy, understanding the business & tax structure
  • The VISA Process
  • Finding the Property & Negotiating
  • Defining your Niche & Identifying your Clients
  • Grass Roots Marketing & the Power of Social Media
  • Operations
  • Hospitality & Exceeding your Clients Expectations
  • Business, Culture & Expat Life in Italy
  • Small Business Owners Stories from Expats & Italians


Q&A with the Experts
Come prepared with all your burning questions! On hand will be "Insiders & Experts" from an Italian Commercialista (Tax Account, Business Advisor Specialising in European Financing) Fabio Centurioni, Business Attorney, Small Business Owners (expats & Italians) and of course Jason & I! The business owners are a mix of entrepreneurs that are operate in diverse settings from the rural countryside to the heart of a medieval village - giving you a better understanding on the pros & cons of city vs. country locations & living while sharing stories of their struggles, successes & what keeps driving them forward.

Read all the details here: Move to Italy Workshop

A few photos from the first workshop: what a great group of dreamers, risk takers and entrepreneurs!













Contact us at: info@latavolamarche.com
for more details!

Thursday, April 6

Podcast from Italy: Gigantic Easter Eggs, Vlogging Pains, A Lamb Recipe...and more from The Book!


We are fired up for our first cooking class of the season - pizza, only to have a classic April shower washout. The workshop went great - we just don't know if it was the content or all the food & wine!! Jason shares one of his favorite lamb recipes. And Ashley shares her frustrations on vlogging...damn Casey Neistat! This week - we share a few more excerpts from the unpublished, unnamed, unfinished book!

Podcast from Italy: #99 - Fired up for the first cooking class of the season, vlogging pains…and more excerpts from The Book! - Dowload/Stream on iTunesStitcher or Podbean

Here are a few of the Easter eggs in action:

Wednesday, March 29

The Lambs of Spring



Lamb
(A post by Jason)

Winters’ grip has loosened and the air has changed . The clocks have been moved back one hour. Ends of the fruit trees have begun to swell in anticipation of the bloom. The familiar hum of high torque, low rpm diesel engines combine with the squeak of metal on mettle as the plough follows dutifully behind the tractors echoes off the hills. Potatoes are in; The garlic and fava beans are up and have already been hoed and fertilized. Spring in our valley has finally arrived.


On the drive into Piobbico just past Il Castello Dei Pecori, on the left hand side, is a great field of grass. At first flat, it follows the terrain up the hillside with the perfect pockmark of trees ever so often as you would imagine. In the distance, far up the hill where the field meets the tree line, grazing peacefully, are several hundred lamb and sheep. Their presence and sheer number give perspective to the enormity of this field and I can barley make out individual shapes with the glare of the sun as I wiz by. They are alway there; each morning. In different locations of the field depending on time of day and where the sun might be shining but never less, heads down, peaceful grazing. They are never alone. The flock has two 55kg chaperones usually lying in the grass meters away. Cane Maremmano - Huge puffy white sheep herding dogs that are very protective of their flock and are not to be tested. They are led by slender man with a straw hat who carries a staff ( I can’t make this up). In the mornings I see him mostly walking almost the animals who don’t seem to pay him much mind. In the afternoons he might be taking some shade under one of the trees; enjoying a cigarette. 



This morning at the end of our road, I made a right hand turn. Just past Il Castello Dei Pecori as I came around the bend looking to my left into that vivid shade of green, the sun and the dew combined to transform every blade of grass into a tiny prism creating a brilliant effect. I scan that picturesque field with curious anticipation of catching a glimpse of the lambs grazing, a ritual now to begin my day. Today I look from the road all the way up to the tree line. No Lambs. I slowdown thinking they must be in the corner that’s hard to see if I go too fast. No big puffy white dogs. I pull over, get out, and look back down the field up into the opposite corner. The slender man with a straw hat and staff is not there. The Lambs are gone. Spring has arrived.


I am not a conflicted omnivore. I understand for what purpose those lambs were in that field. On Easter, like most Italians, I too will enjoy the traditional dishes of the season which will most certainly include Lamb.

I climb back into the dusty Hyundai, drive into Piobbico and do my errands. On the way back passing that field once more I say a silent thanks. I do not weep for the sheep, but rather renew my respect for them. An undeniable connection has been made between what I eat and where it came from so easily overlooked when displayed behind glass or neatly wrapped in styrofoam and plastic. I thank the Lambs and remind myself how lucky I am to live in this beautiful country. With all Her problems, all the craziness and corruption, a life in Italy is full of these little paradoxes all around, if you are willing to slow down and look for the Lambs.


Tuesday, March 21

Podcast from Italy: Ahh the beauracracy, it can come 8 years later and bite ya! + Chapter 4 of The Book


We are in full spring cleaning mode - from painting the guest rooms, working in the garden, planting flowers and taking care of business before the guests arrive in a week and half! That means tieing up loose ends with our immigration and farmer's union as well.... (Photos are from the peanut gallery at Coldiretti - the farmers union!) We find out the hard way that even 8 years later the beauracracy can come back and bite ya if you didn't take care of it properly. Lots of dinner with Gaggi and his totally comedic frustration of a dinner with bread. And Chapter 4 of the untitled, unpublished book about our move to Italy 10 years ago!
Podcast from Italy: #98 - Ahh the beauracracy, it can come 8 years later and bite ya! + Chapter 4 of The Book - Dowload/Stream on iTunesStitcher or Podbean

Please subscribe to our Youtube Channel and check out all our latest Vlog from Italy videos!

Sunday, March 19

VLOG from ITALY: 005 VENICE in 48 Hours


A few weeks ago we slipped away to Venice for 48 hours. After a five hour drive from our farmhouse we quickly decided to take a water taxi to our hotel! Why not?! It's been 10 years since we visited - let's arrive in style!  We weaved our way through the tourists packed canals dodging selfie sticks on every bridge & filmed a ton along the way! Our only plans were the opera - other than that we were left to explore...With all the cities beauty we were weirdly fascinated not by the architecture but the transportation of goods! 

WATCH: VLOG from ITALY: 005 VENICE


MUSIC:
Best Day of My Life, American Authors
Life in Color by One Republic

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Tuesday, March 14

MAY | Spring Foodie Getaways


This spring escape to lovely Le Marche with these fabulous foodie getaway's in Italy! Lush fields of wild greens, crates of overflowing artichokes, handmade meals & a cooking class in the countryside with a professional chef in his rustic kitchen! La Tavola Marche (farm, inn & cooking school)

MAY Getaway, 2 Night Spring Special
(Any two nights in May)

A lovely Spring getaway to the Italian countryside!

Arrive to a five course welcome feast, made by hand with produce from our garden and local traditional recipes. The next day tie up your custom made apron for a half day cooking class including meal prepared by the class and plenty of local wine! Choose from our Pasta & Sauces class or Full Meal Dinner Party class (creating all five courses from scratch!)

Includes: Two nights accommodations in apartment PESCA, welcome dinner with local wine and half day cooking class (with meal, wine and gift apron) for TWO (based on double occupancy.)

You can always stay longer and join us for a mushroom hunt, wine tour or "Feel like a Local Friday" Market Tour/Tasting & Lunch!




MADE IN LE MARCHE
D.O.C. Wine Tour, Artisan Meat & Cheese Market Trip, Craft Beer Tasting & 3 Cooking Classes

May 16-21, 2017 (5 Nights) = 928 Euro/person

Celebrating the culinary traditions of Le Marche with a gourmet getaway of five nights with three diverse hands-on cooking classes teaching traditional seasonal recipes of the area, a wine tour and cheese tasting with Marco then feel like a local on Friday with our very special meat market tour & tasting (including a stop for porchetta), a visit to our favorite award winning craft brewery Collesi and then lunch at the Hunter's Hide-away!

Includes 5 nights, welcome five course dinner with local wine, 3 half-day cooking classes with meals and wine, 1 day wine tour with lunch and transportation, Pizza Night Dinner and Apecchio market tour & tasting, beer tasting and lunch at the hunter's hideaway, breakfast daily. Price based on double occupancy.

Visit our farm, inn & cooking school LA TAVOLA MARCHE www.latavolamarche.com                info@latavolamarche.com 

WATCH this video I made of Spring in our Valley:

Sunday, March 12

VLOG from ITALY 004: The Cure




All that porky goodness takes time...Here it is VLOG from ITALY 004: THE CURE - how we make & cure our sausages & salami! *Ask any questions you have for us below in the comments for an upcoming Q&A Vlog!! We'd love to hear from you* Each winter we turn one of our guest apartments into our meat curing room...It's months in the making but worth the wait!



Watch VLOG from ITALY 004: The Cure



Filmed at La Tavola Marche (Farm, Inn & Cooking School) with Dr.Settimio Gaggi!
(PS- Yes, I know I spelled cheek wrong!)

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Friday, March 3

VLOG from ITALY: 003 The Story of Il Capo, Dr. Gaggi



Ohhh boy! This Vlog took us longer than normal because it hits closest to home.  In the third VLOG from Italy we introduce you to our beloved & ever infuriating Italian papa, Dr. Gaggi or Il Capo. Find out why he's "the boss" il capo in the latest episode! If you have visited the farmhouse you probably met him/saw him in the garden, if you listen to the podcast or have followed us in the past, his name will sound familiar as he's part of our everyday life. This self proclaimed child of America, without children of his own has taken us under his wing and taught us how to become Italian.

Watch the latest VLOG from ITALY: 003 The Story of Il Capo



Don't miss an episode & subscribe on YouTube! Click Here!




Tuesday, February 28

It's Always Sunny at La Tavola Marche - Spring/Summer Workshops & Cooking Classes


Snow may still be falling in your neck of the woods but that doesn't mean you can't be dreaming about fields of sunflowers in Italy!   Its that time of year to start planning your 2017 holiday and why not a return to lovely Le Marche, (especially with loads of cheap international flights)!

We are excited about what's in store at our farmhouse & cooking school 
La Tavola Marche  - just named by the London Sunday Times as one of the 100 BEST Vacations of 2017 From foraging for wild edibles, sausages from scratch and the wood oven class (yes, it's for more than just pizza!) to our new workshop on pickling, preserving & confit - there's always something going on at the farm!

Check out our latest NEWSLETTER: Spring/Summer at La Tavola Marche

WATCH this glimpse of Summer in Le Marche, Italy to get in the holiday mindset


Hope to see you at the farmhouse in 2017!




Sunday, February 26

A Candid Interview on What it's REALLY like to Own a B&B in ITALY


Our friends at Dream of Italy Newsletter recently interviewed us about our April 1-5, 2017 Consulting workshop on Moving to Italy (we've got 1 spot open!!) We tried to answer honestly and candid about that's happened in the last year - from the crazy sale/non-sale/they fled in the middle of the night (that seriously happened!) to the lessons/mistakes we've made and learned from in the past 10 years and what it's like owning and operating a business as a couple.  Plus we look inward and share what inspired us to start this workshop:

DOI: I listened to your podcast about trying to sell your B&B. What were the lessons from that attempted sale? Is that how this course on running a B&B in Italy was born?

AB: Looking back and trying to analyse the situation we can see that we we put on blinders to red-flags since were so excited at the opportunity to sell our business and watch it succeed in anew set of hands. We were also naive and didn’t protect ourselves financially. It was an expensive lesson, but a one we will learned from greatly.
We began to look at the situation from the other side of the table and that’s how the workshop was born! We realized most people are ‘dream drunk’ which can be a wonderful thing but also dangerous if you are ill prepared and don’t really understand what it takes to move and start a new business. Saying you are ready to do this is very different than being mentally, physically (and at times financially) prepared. We wanted to share with others this opportunity to learn from us and our panel, ask all their burning questions and get honest answers. It will be a good dose of reality.

Read the full interview here: So You Want to Own and Run A Bed & Breakfast in Italy?






Friday, February 24

Podcast from Italy: 48 Hours in Venice

The magic hour in Venice -

This week is a doozey! We share with you our honest opion of 48 hours in Venice with a few great recommendations including a truck stop for lunch! We are getting ready for the start of the season and busy working on the vlog & projects around the house.  While trying to support his strong back, Jason is strengthening his mind...with basic algebra and a little music from Tennesse Earnie Ford. And back by popular demand...another excerpt from "The Book" - Chapter 3!
 Thanks for listening!!
All dolled up for the opera! 


Podcast from Italy: #97 - 48 Hours in VENICE & Chapter 3 from "The Book" - Dowload/Stream on iTunesStitcher or Podbean

A few of my favorite photos from Venice ...






A Venitian fishmonger takes a mid morning break before the crowds arrive.
Traffic on the Grand Canal!

Monday, February 20

Vlog from Italy: 002 | Snow & Stuffed Artichokes






It all sounds so romantic; living deep in the Italian countryside that is until it snows & you realize it takes a big part of your day just to leave the house! But we don't mind being stuck at home with plenty to cook/eat. We start a recipe for stuffed artichokes...but we dont'get much further than how to filet an anchovy!

We hope you enjoy Episode 002 of Vlog from Italy:



Be sure to follow & subscribe on YouTunes so you don't miss an episode of what's happening next at our farmhouse by clicking here: Subscribe to Videos by La Tavola Marche
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