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Exclusive Culinary Journey

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6523

Exclusive cooking classes in La Rioja, the Basque Country and Navarra

A culinary adventure in Northern Spain

Recommended seasons: Spring and Summer and Fall

DAYS

8 days /7 nights

LEVEL

Casual

info
TYPE

Customised Journey

Programed Journey

COLLECTIONS

The Basque Lands
Kingdom of Navarra
La Rioja

Culinary Journey through La Rioja, Basque Country and Navarra

Learn how to cook regional dishes of three areas of northern Spain on our culinary journey through La Rioja, Navarra and the Basque Country. The program includes a series of cooking classes and show cooking classes with local chefs and includes exclusive entry into top wineries and cultural visits. The art of wine making and wine tasting is an essential element of our journey so expect the best! We give you the opportunity to cook in beautifully equipped kitchens and in gastronomy societies and you will also enjoy stylish picnics in various vineyards. Our philosophy is to promote sustainable travel, ensure that the products we use are locally produced and of the highest quality, to support family restaurants and wineries, and to make a minimal impact on the environment.

Best Time to Visit

April through November

Highlights

  • Cook or watch cook or enjoy regional dishes with local chefs.
  • Distinguish excellent wines through wine tasting in historic and modern wineries.
  • Enjoy exclusive entry into wineries and venues.
  • Visit monuments, monasteries and museums that represent the people, culture, and history of the region.
  • Enjoy four star boutique accommodation throughout your journey.
Availability
Customized

Ready to cook your hearts out?

ulinary Journey through La Rioja, Basque Country and Navarra

Program:

June 20 – 27 2023

August 29 – Sept 6 2023

Sept 20 – Sept 27 2023 – booked

Deluxe: 7,500€
Jr. Suite: Contact for Availability
10 to 20 Guests

*Rates are per person, double occupancy in Euros.

 

Book Now

 

Tailored just for you

Culinary journey through Northern Spain

Tell us what you would love to do and we handle the rest.

Make this culinary journey yours. This private tour can be customised to your specific preferences and requirements.

 

 

Request a quote

 

Itinerary
Bilbao – Logroño – Pamplona - San Sebastian - Hondarribia - Arinzano - Haro – Briones - Casalarreina - Laguardia - Bilbao

Day 1Bilbao – Architecture, Art and Wine, Guggenheim Museum - then off to La Rioja

We meet you in downtown Bilbao, the capital of Vizcaya, and then together we set out to explore the city, including a private tour of the world famous Guggenheim museum. We will have lunch in Bilbao before transferring to your hotel in La Rioja, which is home to renowned wineries that have been rated over 90 points by Robert Parker or Tim Atkins. After checking into the hotel, we regroup to dine on pintxos (tapas) and wines in the festive streets of the historic quarter of the city of Logroño, the Capital of La Rioja, Logroño.

Food: Lunch and dinner
Travel: Bilbao / Logroño / Briones
Sleep: Hotel Santa Maria Briones ****

Day 2Paella anyone? And wine, of course!

Our day begins with a morning walking tour through the medieval town of Briones that overlooks the meandering Ebro River. Here we will visit the historic churches with their polychromatic paintings. No culinary journey in Spain would be complete without a demonstration of how to make the perfect Paella. We do this in the kitchens of Bodegas Beronia, the first winery in the world to be awarded an Energy Efficiency and Sustainable Design certification. We visit the winery, then enjoy a cooking class with our team of chefs. Afternoon activities include a visit to the largest wine museum in the world, Vivanco. We regroup for dinner in the Santa Maria de Briones ‘Calado’ restaurant.

Cooking Activity: Paella cooking class
Travel: Briones / Casalarreina
Sleep: Hotel Santa Maria Briones ****

Day 3Tasting wine like an expert

We will learn more about the art of wine tasting beginning with an exclusive visit to Bodegas Muga, followed by wine tasting in the Gomez Cruzado, Lopez de Heredia or La Rioja Alta wine bars. We will visit Haro, the capital of the wine region, followed by a delicious lunch at a family restaurant that has a well-preserved 16th Century wine cellar dating back to 1877. Here we will learn step by step how they prepare their well-known lamb, roasted in a wood-fired oven. We will transfer back to your hotel to relax, then regroup for a `pintxos and wine’ evening in Haro. The evening ends with a cocktail in the Teorema, which is a bar said to have the largest gin collections in the world.

Cooking Activity: The art of wine tasting
Travel: Haro / Briones
Sleep: Hotel Santa Maria Briones ****

Day 4And don’t forget to eat your vegetables – these are the very best

We transfer to Pamplona for a morning stroll along the route of the famous running of the bulls which is held during the festival of San Fermín. Lunch is a show cooking class with chef Nacho Gómara in his ‘zero mile’ haute cuisine restaurant, awarded with a 2020 Repsol Sun. Learn about the specific qualities and varieties of the vegetables of Navarra. We will transfer to San Sebastian and check into your hotel. We regroup for a pintxos and wine evening in the best bars of San Sebastian’s historic quarter, and of course, we will certainly be trying the classic ‘Txakoli’ which is the local sparkling white wine.

Cooking Activity: Show cooking with chef Nacho Gómara
Travel: Pamplona / San Sebastián
Sleep: Hotel ****

Day 5Seaside, wine, and then back to work in the kitchen

We enjoy an early morning visit the colorful coastal town of Hondarribia for a cultural walking tour of this historic town before transferring inland to the exclusive Navarre winery Propiedad Arinzano for a five star outside-the-box visit. We will then take a 4×4 drive through the estate vineyards for a light lunch of Arinzano wines paired with Iberian cold meats, local sheep cheese – all while admiring the gorgeous panoramic views of a vast expanse of ripe or ripening grapes. We will transfer to Briones to check into our hotel and regroup for an evening cooking class in La Vieja Bodega restaurant. The cooking class includes four of the following local dishes: Asparagus cream with cod slices and crutones, salmorejo or gazpacho, stuffed red peppers, ‘pochas frescas’ fresh white beans and grilled turbot.

Cooking Activity: Cooking class in La Vieja Bodega
Travel: San Sebastián / Hondarribia / Arinzano / Casalarreina / Briones
Sleep: Hotel Santa Maria Briones ****

Day 6Cooking in the shade of an old oak tree – doesn’t that sound bucolic?

We will visit the medieval town of Laguardia. This beautiful town was founded in the 10th century as a defense for the Kingdom of Navarre and its medieval layout has remained almost unchanged in the intervening years. This visit is followed by an open air cooking class in the rural vineyards close to the meandering Ebro River…and yes, under an old oak tree. Bliss! Learn the local way of grilling lamb over an open fire – a dish to be accompanied by freshly harvested red peppers, leek vinagrette salad, the classic ‘Patatas a la Riojana’, blood sausage paired with Villota wines. Afternoon pleasures include a visit to Ezcaray town and an opportunity to shop in exquisite local shops, one of which is Mantas Ezcaray which offers the highest quality wool products available in Spain. Dinner will be in the Michelin star recommended restaurant Echaurren Tradición, or simply enjoy pintxos in the town.

Cooking Activity: Open air cooking class
Travel: Laguardia / Briones / Ezcaray
Sleep: Hotel Santa Maria Briones ****

Day 7Pouring out the love, history – and wine, of course….

This is the last day of our culinary extravaganza. We visit one of the most impressive monasteries in Spain, el Monastery de Suso, which houses the first preserved writings of the Castilian language. This visit will be followed by a stroll into a 16th Century winery that has the longest ‘calados’ in the region. ‘Calados’ are hand-carved underground caves where hundreds of bottles of wine are stored. This visit will be followed by a wine tasting paired with Iberian ham and chocolate. Lunch will be a tasting menu in La Vieja Bodega. We will transfer to your hotel to later regroup for dinner and our last cooking class where we will prepare the classic ‘tortilla de patata’, Spanish omelette and ‘sopa de ajo’ garlic soup, ‘manitas de cerdo’ or roasted suckling pig.

Cooking Activity: Cooking class in La Vieja Bodega
Travel: Briones / San Millan de la Cogolla / Casalarreina
Sleep: Hotel Santa Maria Briones ****

Day 8Farewell

After a fine breakfast, we will transfer you to Bilbao for your onward travels.

Food: Breakfast
Travel: Briones to Bilbao

* NST itineraries may be subject to slight route changes, hotel substitutions, and other modifications.

Included

Hotels

  • Select hotels that reflect the uniqueness of each destination

Cooking Classes and meals

  • 5 Cooking Classes and show cookings
  • 7 Gourmet lunches and wine pairings
  • 6 Gourmet dinners and wine pairings
  • 2 Pintxo and wine experiences

Transportation

  • NST Ford Custom vans or bus

Activities

  • Wine tastings and activities as indicated in the itinerary
  • Entrance fees to historic sites, museums, and all other exclusive events

Not Included

  • Airfare
  • Travel Insurance
  • Dinners on free evenings
  • Gratuities for guides
  • Extra services not outlined in the itinerary
  • Hotel Alma Pamplona *****

    Oasis from the City Hub Bub

    Alma Pamplona is an active travel friendly hotel. Modern and avant-garde, has its own personality, which seeks to surprise. This quiet enclave is where we luxuriate in the Spa and Treatment center, and chill at the gastro bar after a morning of activity.

  • Hotel de Bilbao Miró ****

    City Center of Bilbao

    Hotel Miró is located in the center of Bilbao about 170 meters from the Museum of Fine Arts and 900 meters from the Zubizuri Bridge. The historic quarter, where you will find the Arriaga Theater and the Plaza Nueva among other points of interest, is in walking distance.

  • Hotel Tayko

    Hotel Tayko ****

    City Center of Bilbao

    Hotel Tayko is located in the center of Bilbao, about 70 meters from Arriaga Theater and the Plaza Nueva, among other points of interest, is in walking distance. But, best of all is that Tayko Hotel is a lifestyle hotel with 54 rooms with prime views of the Ria (estuary) or Merced Street.

  • Outstanding accommodation

    Propriedad de Arinzano

    Sleep on the Arinzano Estate

    Señorío de Arínzano is one of the oldest wineries in Spain, but is also one of our favorite accommodations for walking, cycling and food and wine visits.

  • Santa Maria Briones

    Hotel Santa Maria Briones ****

    Historic town of Briones

    It is strategically located in the town Briones, it is the ideal location for our culinary journeys to discover the region and its gastronomy. It is already one of the best hotels in La Rioja.

Tour Designers

Stephanie Mutsaerts

Founder of Northern Spain Travel & Heart of Pamplona

Stephanie, the dynamo of our organization, is a Canadian who has fallen in love with this region of Spain. She is enterprising, innovative and has an endless amount of energy to design unique outstanding travel plans, making her passion her profession. She has the firm conviction that until the product standards are exceptional, they should not be offered.

“Our goals are two: one is to dazzle our visitors and another is to share with them what we find so extremely enchanting about this region of Spain”.

Oliver Blazquez

Product Manager & Public Relations

Oliver is our greatest ambassador of Pamplona. Oliver has it all: charm, conversation and deep knowledge of his Basque culture. You will feel like you’ve made a new friend during one of his energetic tours. Oliver is always on the beat searching for the perfect pintxo and exciting, outside-the-box experiences. He is dedicated to designing the most exclusive events for our guests, such as the Hemingway to the Basque Coast tour, or a walking tour of the Running of the Bulls course with an international bull runner.  He knows the all the best destinations and activities on the off-the-beaten cultural track.

“This is our essential hallmark that sets us apart from any other events agency”.

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