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  • Wine tasting and cookery holiday in Valpolicella

    Villa del Quar

    Wine cellar at Villa del Quar

    Swimming pool

    Terrace dining

    Wine tasting and cookery holiday in the Valpolicella vineyards of northern Italy

    This five night food and wine holiday in the Valpolicella wine district of northern Italy is based at the Villa del Quar, situated within the Veneto region near Verona. Nestled between the Roman city of Verona, Lake Garda, the Lessini Mountains, and the Adige River, the Villa del Quar is a hotel where comfortable elegance meets exquisite local wines and cuisine.
    After flying into Verona airport, spend your holiday sampling the produce of the Valpolicella vineyards, dining on exquisite local cuisine or exploring the nearby towns and cities by car, seeking out beautiful villas designed by architects such as Palladio, Michele Sanmicheli, and Giulio Romano. Also included in this food and wine holiday is a cookery lesson at the hotel, where guests have the opportunity to learn how to recreate traditional dishes.

    Highlights of this food and wine holiday

    This five-night food and wine holiday in the Valpolicella region of northern Italy is available on the dates of your choice and includes the following experiences, all of which take place at the Villa del Quar
    • Visit to the vineyard of the Villa del Quar estate and a tasting of the estate’s three wines (Ausia, Satyrus and Sublitis) in the roman wine cellar.
    • Dinner at the ‘Arquade’ restaurant in the ‘Orangerie’ outside patio area facing the garden and vineyards. Includes three-course menu of Mediterranean cuisine with Valpolicella and Amarone wines, coffee, and water included.
    • 2 hour hands-on cookery lesson with the chef to learn how to prepare pasta, fish and meat or sweets and bread. Soft drinks and water included for guests and a certificate from the chef at the end.
    Prices from £1510 per person including flights, car-hire, bed and breakfast accommodation and the experiences mentioned above.

    Your food and wine holiday

    Your five-night stay in the Valpolicella vineyards begins when your flight lands in Verona. Collect your hire car, and drive north to the Villa del Quar. The serenity of its location, captured by the surrounding rolling fields and the privacy of its grounds, will strike you upon approach. This intimate Venetian Villa will be your host for the next five days, as you venture out to uncover the treasures of the region. During your stay, you will travel out to the vineyard of the Villa del Quar estate to taste three of their best wines - Ausia, a fresh fruity wine; Satyrus, comparable to a lighter Valpolicella; and Sublitis, a strong red wine made from a combination of grapes - in their very own Roman wine cellar, home to more than 1200 prestigious labels. The hotel will also provide a cookery lesson, specialising in the seafood, pasta, and meat dishes so typical of Italian cuisine, giving you the ability to serve these dishes to friends and relatives at home – the ultimate souvenir. In the evening, the price of this holiday also includes one dinner at the Arquade Restaurant in the Orangerie with its views across the hotel’s grounds, recognised internationally for its excellent food. The Mediterranean cuisine is served alongside the Valpolicella and Amarone wines.

    The wines of the Valpolicella area are as distinctive as they are famous. The Amarone wines in particular are very unique, gathering their bitter taste from the traditional method of fermentation, whereby the grapes are dried to ensure that all the sugar from the fruit is fermented. Over the course of your stay, be sure to look out for the Amarone di Valpolicella red wine, or its white counterpart, the Recioto di Soave. Nearby wine estates in the Veneto region that are open for tasting include the stunningly grand Villa Mosconi Bertani, which is also open for a villa tour, and the Villa della Torre, a Renaissance villa. The Villa della Torre is in the Classico zone of the Allegrini estate, the leading wine producer in the Valpolicella area. To taste and buy some of the local culinary produce, head to the I Sapori del Portico, just a 15 minute walk from your hotel, which sells a wide range of different cheeses and cured meats. The Frantoio Guglielmi in Fumane regularly organises cultural events, and well as olive oil tastings. Near Lake Garda, however, is the Oleificio Turri, a well-known and well-respected olive oil producer. Its extensive olive groves are open for tours every day except Sunday, and boast an impressive 27 varieties of olive trees, some specific to the region, and some imported from other parts of Italy. Olive oil sampling is available at the oil mill, as well as tastings of pesto and other oil-based sauces produced on the estate. For a history of olive oil production, visit the museum in Cisano. Spend lunchtimes in the Quar12, which serves simple regional food, perfect for a light meal before relaxing, but stimulating, afternoons of exploration.

    To break up your gastronomic experience of the Valpolicella and the Veneto, explore the many sites of historical interest. The Villa del Quar is located in an area containing 44 UNESCO World Heritage Sites, the largest concentration in the world. The charming reputation of Verona precedes it, as the setting for Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet, and the site of much Roman and Renaissance heritage and architecture. Touch the statue of Juliet in the courtyard of Casa di Giulietta to receive luck in love, or descend into the crypt of the Basilica of San Zeno Maggiore to see the setting of Romeo and Juliet’s wedding. Pass under the Arco della Costa from which hangs a whale bone that will reputedly fall only when someone righteous walks underneath. From here, tour the city’s various museums and galleries, and the Giardino Giusti. These gardens accompany a building dating back to the 16th century, and are considered a perfect example of Italy’s most beautiful gardens. The gardens’ Belvedere offers magnificent views across the city. Alternatively, stay away from the bustle of the Italian cities, and visit the small and charming town of Mantua, formerly one of the richest cities of the Middle Ages, under the control of the Gonzaga family. The medieval villages of Borghetto and Castellaro Lagusello are within an hour’s drive of your hotel. Borghetto, alongside the river Mincio, has two small picturesque waterfalls, and still retains some of its old fortifications. The nearby gardens of Park Sigurtà are, like the Giardino Giusti, considered some of the most beautiful gardens in the world, covering around 600,000 square metres on the Moraine Hills. Castellaro Lagusello is set on a hill overlooking a heart-shaped lake. The castle and the lake, both dating back to the 12th century, give the village its name, and its place in the list of the Most Beautiful Towns in Italy. Just a short drive north is the larger town of Sirmione, the home of Scaliger Castle, a building of outstanding beauty on the town’s peninsula, with ancient stone walls that are bathed in the waters of Lake Garda.

    Your five days at the Villa del Quar will combine the world-renowned excellence of Italian cuisine with some of the best and most distinctive Italian wines and a dazzling array of culture and history. The perfect gastronomic getaway, this holiday is one of convenience, relaxation, and, above all, luxury.

    Recommendations for visits in the area:
    • Villa Mosconi Bertani, for wine-tasting and tours
    • Villa della Torre, for wine-tasting and tours
    • I Sapori del Portico, for local cheeses and cured meats
    • Frantoio Guglielmi, Fumane, for olive oil tastings and events
    • Oleificio Turri, for olive oil tastings and tours
    • Olive Oil Museum, Cisano
    • Casa di Giulietta, Verona
    • San Zeno Maggiore, Verona
    • Arco della Costa, Verona
    • Giardino Giusti, Verona
    • Borghetto
    • Castellaro Lagusello
    • Park Sigurtà
    • Scaliger Castle, Sirmione
    Entrance fees not included in the price of the holiday.

    What’s included:
    • 5 nights in a Classic Double room on BB basis
    • British Airways return flights from London Gatwick to Verona
    • Group A hire car for the duration of your stay
    • Visit to the vineyard of the Villa del Quar estate and a tasting of the estate’s three wines (Ausia, Satyrus and Sublitis) in the roman wine cellar
    • Dinner at the ‘Arquade’ restaurant in the ‘Orangerie’ outside patio area facing the garden and vineyards. Includes three-course menu of Mediterranean cuisine with Valpolicella and Amarone wines, coffee, and water included.
    • 2 hour hands-on cookery lesson with the chef to learn how to prepare pasta, fish and meat or sweets and bread. Soft drinks and water included for guests and a certificate from the chef at the end.

    Dates for this holiday
    This holiday operates on any date of your choice, subject to hotel/flight availability at the time of booking. Additional nights here and at any of our other hotels can be arranged.

    £1650 per person when sharing a Classic Double Room with hire-car for stays from 23 June to 30 September.
    Supplements: £95 per person for Deluxe Room or £230 per person for Junior Suite

    £1510 per person when sharing a Classic Double room with hire-car for stays until 22 June and from 1 October.
    Supplements: £40 per person for Deluxe Room or £275 per person for Junior Suite

    Supplement for private transfers instead of hire car: £10 per person for all dates.
    Upgrades for other room types, hire-car and Club Europe available on request.

    To book this holiday
    Deposit payment of £300 per person. Please call us on 01392 441275.

    Where you stay

    Villa del Quar, Pedemonte
    The Villa del Quar has been run by the Montresor family for many generations. It is situated within its own seven-acre estate, amongst the plains of Valpolicella. A delightful swimming pool is set in a meadow adjacent to the vineyards, and the hotel’s 16th century buildings are arranged around a small garden. Each room has been lovingly renovated to cultivate an atmosphere of warmth and elegance. The lounge area is finely furnished, with the charming addition of wooden 18th century choir stalls. The Restaurant Arquade is adorned with beamed ceilings, and serves gourmet meals accompanied by regional wines. In the summer, guests can dine al fresco on the terrace. The 25 rooms are tastefully furnished in pastel colours, with the addition of beamed ceilings and some rare antique pieces. There is also a wine cellar, tea room, and outdoor gazebo for shady relaxation.
    Find out more about the Villa del Quar

    Travel arrangements

    British Airways flies direct from London Gatwick to Verona daily. Economy is included, but we can offer you advantageous upgrade fares for Club Europe.
    There are also direct flights from regional airports: from Manchester with Monarch, from East Midlands, Leeds and Edinburgh with Jet2, or from Cardiff and Southampton with Flybe.
    It is also possible to fly from other airports to Venice Marco Polo, from where it is an hour and a half drive to the hotel.
    Connecting flights can be organised with British Airways through London Heathrow.
    Local transport
    We recommend the use of a hire-car for this holiday because of the flexibility it gives you to get out and about and explore the region. We include a basic group A car with Avis, for example a Peugeot 107, but a variety of upgraded cars are possible at a variable supplement: about £30 a day for an Alfa Giulietta 2.0, about £35 a day for a VW Golf automatic, or about £45 a day for an Audi A4.
    If you do not want to use a hire-car, it will restrict what you can do from the hotel, but if you prefer we can arrange for you to have a private car transfer to meet you at the airport and take you to the hotel in a Mercedes.
    Other means of getting to Italy
    This holiday can be reached by car from the UK, with a night or two in France en route if you prefer. We can suggest and make the overnight arrangements for you. This hotel can also be reached by train from the UK, on the Eurostar to Paris followed by an overnight sleeper to Milan before continuing by day train to Verona. Alternatively, this journey can be made on daytime trains stopping overnight, perhaps in Munich, Paris, and Switzerland. From Verona we would recommend a hire-car.

     Villa del Quar food and wine holiday map

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