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Host: Giovanna

Bologna, Italy

USD
$70-$180 per person

Traditional Bolognese meal with a loving Italian mother

Host offerings
  • Apartment
  • Home cook
  • Pets
  • Vegetarian
  • Alcohol
  • Transportation
  • Cooking experience
  • Market visit

Meet Giovanna

Giovanna is a warm and gentle retired history and philosophy teacher who has lived in Bologna for over 60 years. She lives in an apartment in a large villa with her daughters Francesca and Laura. She learned fish and vegetable recipes from her mother and grandmother, originally from the Marche region and learned traditional Bolognese cooking from her husband’s family. She loves cooking for family, friends and guests and particularly enjoys widening her culinary repertoire with new dishes she learns on her travels.

Giovanna is proud of Bologna's heritage; Bologna’s nicknames include “la città dotta” (the educated city) and “la città grassa” (the fat city) and its gastronomical history is tied to the city’s university which is the oldest in the world. Since the Middle Ages, the university has attracted students from many different countries and cultures which she believes has enriched the city’s culinary scene. She enjoys introducing guests to Bologna's snacks such as crescentine, tigelle and piadine (made with flour, water and yeast) filled with local salames such as mortadella, prosciutto, ciccioli, coppa di testa and cheeses like the soft sqauccherone or parmigiana which can be washed down with Pignoletto dei colli bolognesi or Lambrusco (if you choose the alcohol option when making your booking).

What to expect

Please note menu might vary. If there are particular dishes you are interested in trying, please include your request in the booking form.

In-home meal: (1-6 guests) Join Giovanna for a seasonal Bolognese meal that starts with typical Bolognese snacks like crescentine or tigelle, a traditional pastry breakfast of mountain farmers made with flour, water, pesto, lard, rosemary, parmesan, traditionally pressed with two bricks and two chestnut tree leaves. You will then enjoy salumi and cheeses like squacquerone and parmigiano-reggiano before tasting seasonal, oven-roasted vegetables including delightful pomodori, Italian tomatoes, or seasonal lettuces and garden vegetables served in the local "pinzimonio" (crudite) style. The central pillars of Bolognese cooking are pork meat and egg pasta and you will enjoy a pasta such as tagliatelle al ragù or the local Gramigna, Bolognese pasta with "salsiccia" made in the surrounding countryside. Second courses include the famous cotoletta alla bolognese (veal with ham and parmigiano), bisteccone (steak) or cotechino in galera and polpette con umido con piselli (meatballs with peas). Giovanna usually combines meat dishes with potato purèe, verdure con besciamella (vegetables with bechamel sauce) or friggione (a slow-cooked dish made with onions and tomatoes). Desserts vary seasonally and are usually tied to traditional festivals, such as the certosino bolognese for Christmas, le raviole for Saint Joseph, pinza (filled with Bolognese mostarda) or torta di riso, a rice cake which families make for the festa degli addobbi.

Cooking experience: (1-5 guests) Giovanna loves teaching guests how to prepare typical dishes from the rich Bolognese cooking tradition and sharing tales and anecdotes that are connected to different foods. Join Giovanna in her kitchen and learn to make a pasta dish such as tagliatelle al ragù, lasagne or tortellini, or a lesser known pasta such as gramigna with sausage, maltagliati (offcuts of flat egg pasta) with beans, or passatelli in brodo (soup with pasta). You will also learn to cook a side or dessert, before you share the meal you helped prepare with Giovanna at her dining table.

Market visit: (1-5 guests) Join Giovanna for a memorable tour of one of Bologna's markets. Depending on the day you may visit the Mercato del Quadrilatero or Mercato del Erbe where she buys her seasonal fruit and vegetables. The Antico mercato del Quadrilatero is a few minutes from her house and has medieval origins. You will see vendors selling everything from artisanal products to jewelry, meat, fish, salami, fruit, vegetables and bread. It is located in Piazza Maggiore, and is where most Bolognese housewives go to find traditional and genuine products. The other market you may visit is the Mercato delle Erbe, a covered market in the historical center, where you can buy local and regional produce, from fruit and vegetables to meat, cheese, salami, wine and fish.

Languages spoken: English, Italian

Sample menu

This is just a sample menu to give you an idea of the types of dishes the host cooks. Your menu will vary according to seasonal availability.
  • Bolognese snacks: Crescentine (served with tomato sauce and parmesan cheese) and Tigelle (pesto, rosemary e parmesan cheese pastry)
  • Appetizers: Salumi and Formaggi
  • Side: Seasonal lettuce and garden vegetables salad or roasted vegetables
  • First course: Gramigna, tagliatelle al ragù or lasagne
  • Second course: Cotoletta alla bolognese, bisteccone (steak) or polpette con umido con piselli
  • Dessert: Typical Italian seasonal dessert
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Giovanna

$70-$180 USD

per person
100%
Satisfaction Guaranteed
  • 100% Satisfaction guarantee or your money back
  • Free cancellation up to 48 hours in advance
  • Your credit card will not be charged until your host accepts your booking
Pricing (per person)*
1 person 2-4 ppl 5+ ppl
In-Home Meal
$88 $72 $70
Cooking Experience + Meal
$140 $120 $116
Market Tour+ Cooking Experience + Meal
$180 $146 $140
Alcohol
$8 per person
*Does not include 3% payment processing fee applied at checkout.
1 person 2-4 people 5+ people
In-Home Meal
$88 $72 $70
Cooking Experience + Meal
$140 $120 $116
Market Tour+ Cooking Experience + Meal
$180 $146 $140
Alcohol
$8 per person
*Does not include 3% payment processing fee applied at checkout.
Experience Timings
Lunch Dinner
In-Home Meal
12:00pm-2:00pm 7:00pm-9:00pm
Cooking Experience+ Meal
11:00am-2:00pm 6:00pm-9:00pm
Market Tour+ Cooking Experience + Meal
9:00am-2:00pm 5:00pm-10:00pm

Meet Giovanna

Giovanna is a warm and gentle retired history and philosophy teacher who has lived in Bologna for over 60 years. She lives in an apartment in a large villa with her daughters Francesca and Laura. She learned fish and vegetable recipes from her mother and grandmother, originally from the Marche region and learned traditional Bolognese cooking from her husband’s family. She loves cooking for family, friends and guests and particularly enjoys widening her culinary repertoire with new dishes she learns on her travels.

Giovanna is proud of Bologna's heritage; Bologna’s nicknames include “la città dotta” (the educated city) and “la città grassa” (the fat city) and its gastronomical history is tied to the city’s university which is the oldest in the world. Since the Middle Ages, the university has attracted students from many different countries and cultures which she believes has enriched the city’s culinary scene. She enjoys introducing guests to Bologna's snacks such as crescentine, tigelle and piadine (made with flour, water and yeast) filled with local salames such as mortadella, prosciutto, ciccioli, coppa di testa and cheeses like the soft sqauccherone or parmigiana which can be washed down with Pignoletto dei colli bolognesi or Lambrusco (if you choose the alcohol option when making your booking).

What to expect

Please note menu might vary. If there are particular dishes you are interested in trying, please include your request in the booking form.

In-home meal: (1-6 guests) Join Giovanna for a seasonal Bolognese meal that starts with typical Bolognese snacks like crescentine or tigelle, a traditional pastry breakfast of mountain farmers made with flour, water, pesto, lard, rosemary, parmesan, traditionally pressed with two bricks and two chestnut tree leaves. You will then enjoy salumi and cheeses like squacquerone and parmigiano-reggiano before tasting seasonal, oven-roasted vegetables including delightful pomodori, Italian tomatoes, or seasonal lettuces and garden vegetables served in the local "pinzimonio" (crudite) style. The central pillars of Bolognese cooking are pork meat and egg pasta and you will enjoy a pasta such as tagliatelle al ragù or the local Gramigna, Bolognese pasta with "salsiccia" made in the surrounding countryside. Second courses include the famous cotoletta alla bolognese (veal with ham and parmigiano), bisteccone (steak) or cotechino in galera and polpette con umido con piselli (meatballs with peas). Giovanna usually combines meat dishes with potato purèe, verdure con besciamella (vegetables with bechamel sauce) or friggione (a slow-cooked dish made with onions and tomatoes). Desserts vary seasonally and are usually tied to traditional festivals, such as the certosino bolognese for Christmas, le raviole for Saint Joseph, pinza (filled with Bolognese mostarda) or torta di riso, a rice cake which families make for the festa degli addobbi.

Cooking experience: (1-5 guests) Giovanna loves teaching guests how to prepare typical dishes from the rich Bolognese cooking tradition and sharing tales and anecdotes that are connected to different foods. Join Giovanna in her kitchen and learn to make a pasta dish such as tagliatelle al ragù, lasagne or tortellini, or a lesser known pasta such as gramigna with sausage, maltagliati (offcuts of flat egg pasta) with beans, or passatelli in brodo (soup with pasta). You will also learn to cook a side or dessert, before you share the meal you helped prepare with Giovanna at her dining table.

Market visit: (1-5 guests) Join Giovanna for a memorable tour of one of Bologna's markets. Depending on the day you may visit the Mercato del Quadrilatero or Mercato del Erbe where she buys her seasonal fruit and vegetables. The Antico mercato del Quadrilatero is a few minutes from her house and has medieval origins. You will see vendors selling everything from artisanal products to jewelry, meat, fish, salami, fruit, vegetables and bread. It is located in Piazza Maggiore, and is where most Bolognese housewives go to find traditional and genuine products. The other market you may visit is the Mercato delle Erbe, a covered market in the historical center, where you can buy local and regional produce, from fruit and vegetables to meat, cheese, salami, wine and fish.

Languages spoken: English, Italian

Sample menu

This is just a sample menu to give you an idea of the types of dishes the host cooks. Your menu will vary according to seasonal availability.
  • Bolognese snacks: Crescentine (served with tomato sauce and parmesan cheese) and Tigelle (pesto, rosemary e parmesan cheese pastry)
  • Appetizers: Salumi and Formaggi
  • Side: Seasonal lettuce and garden vegetables salad or roasted vegetables
  • First course: Gramigna, tagliatelle al ragù or lasagne
  • Second course: Cotoletta alla bolognese, bisteccone (steak) or polpette con umido con piselli
  • Dessert: Typical Italian seasonal dessert
Pricing (per person)*
1 person 2-4 ppl 5+ ppl
In-Home Meal
$88 $72 $70
Cooking Experience + Meal
$140 $120 $116
Market Tour+ Cooking Experience + Meal
$180 $146 $140
Alcohol
$8 per person
*Does not include 3% payment processing fee applied at checkout.
1 person 2-4 people 5+ people
In-Home Meal
$88 $72 $70
Cooking Experience + Meal
$140 $120 $116
Market Tour+ Cooking Experience + Meal
$180 $146 $140
Alcohol
$8 per person
*Does not include 3% payment processing fee applied at checkout.
Experience Timings
Lunch Dinner
In-Home Meal
12:00pm-2:00pm 7:00pm-9:00pm
Cooking Experience+ Meal
11:00am-2:00pm 6:00pm-9:00pm
Market Tour+ Cooking Experience + Meal
9:00am-2:00pm 5:00pm-10:00pm
FAQ

    You can cancel your experience 48 hours or more before your experience date and receive a full refund. To request a cancellation once you have made a booking simply log in and click the "Request Cancellation" link from the bottom of your booking. Your refund will be processed immediately (note it can take up to 10 business days for this refund to post to your credit card statement). Please note that for cancellations within 48 hours of your experience we unfortunately cannot offer a refund; this is because our hosts typically purchase food and begin their preparations up to 48 hours before the experience.

    Most of our hosts are able to accommodate dietary restrictions and allergies, including vegetarian and gluten free options. For vegetarian travelers, we have an icon on each host profile to indicate whether that host can also offer a fully vegetarian menu. There is a section in the booking form to note any allergies or dietary restrictions which will be sent directly to your host.

    If you have a question about an experience, create a reservation and include your note in the field "Write a note to your host". Once you request a booking you can continue to message your host directly to ask any specific questions. You can always cancel your booking and receive a full refund as long as you cancel 48 hours in advance.

    Your card will not be charged until your host accepts your booking. Typically hosts respond to bookings within 72 hours. In the event your host is unavailable on your selected date and your host rejects your booking your credit card will not be charged.

    Your host's detailed contact information, including their phone number, address, and direction notes, will all be provided immediately upon successful confirmation of your experience (after your hosts accepts your booking and your credit card is successfully processed). This information will be emailed to you to the email address you used to sign up, and will also be visible on your Traveling Spoon profile.

    All prices are noted per person prices unless otherwise specified. Transportation is typically charged on a per car basis, but otherwise all prices are per person. Children aged 5-11 are 50% off, and infants aged 0-4 are free.

    Some hosts offer alcohol as an optional add-on for travelers who are of legal drinking age. Pricing for alcohol is visible on the host profile page and includes one to two glasses of wine, beer or local alcohol.

    Some hosts offer transportation as an optional add-on for travelers. Typically this is round trip transportation with pick up and drop off at your hotel. Pricing is quoted per car. Specific instructions for transportation will be provided in your confirmation details when your booking is confirmed.

    Many of our hosts accommodate solo travelers. You can see if a host accepts solo travelers by looking at the traveler range found next to the experience descriptions on the host profile (indicated by the numbers in parentheses next to "In-home meal", "Cooking experience" and "Market visit").

    Your safety and security are our top priority. To ensure this, Traveling Spoon personally vets 100% of all hosts, including an in-person host visit, to ensure each host and experience meets our strict quality requirements.

    Hosts typically respond to booking inquiries within 72 hours. If for some reason you have not heard from your host or if you have any questions you can always contact us at reservations@travelingspoon.com.