Ancient Olive Tree, Puglia, Italy 2017

Culinary Travel to Puglia, Italy for Registered Dietitian Nutritionists, Culinary Professionals + Friends, Fall 2018

Early Booking Discount for Puglia, Italy 2018. Don’t miss this Mediterranean journey of a lifetime!

  • Approved for 30 Continuing Education Units by CDR – Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics
  • Passion For Puglia 2018: Culinary + Cultural Immersion Beyond the Mediterranean Diet 
  • Explore the region of Puglia, Southern Italy 
  • Sunday Oct 28 – Sunday Nov 4 (7 Nights) 2018

Curated and hosted by award-winning culinary nutritionist and author Layne Lieberman, MS, RD, CDN and Southern Visions Travel (on site in Puglia, Italy)

With guides, experts and chefs from the region of Puglia

Authentic is a word that’s often tossed around, sometimes indiscriminately, to describe a persons character or to judge a piece of craftsmanship. But when it comes to travel, it’s the new buzz word and it’s something very real that travelers seek. Gone are the days of pre-formulated travel and well trodden paths – globe trotters want to feel connected to the lands they visit on every plane – emotionally, spiritually and physically. Having traveled all over Italy, I would say unequivocally that Puglia, the heel of Italy, is one of the most splendid regions, definitely one of the most authentic in southern Italy, and perhaps the world. That’s because it encompasses a multitude of friendly faces, captivating countrysides, beautiful beaches, old cities and local food that provide the foundation for the alluring life in Puglia.

The region, known for its biodiversity has always been Italy’s breadbasket because of its fertile soil, olive trees and old-fashioned pasta making (especially the orrechiette or ear-shape pasta, made by hand). Local, organic food from surrounding farms is a way of life. Everyone enjoys the exquisite produce, fresh-pressed olive oil, Primitivo wine, seafood, fresh dairy and pasture-raised meat. Regional chef Anna Marie Chirone says, “The Ionian Sea is the saltiest part of the Mediterranean and that’s why the seafood tastes so good. Don’t leave without sampling the cozzes (black mussels).”

Puglia is the epitome of slow food and zero kilometer living. The authenticity makes you wonder how long life in this part of southern Italy will stay just as it is.

Food is religion and the culture dictates eating fresh pasta everyday–1 to 2 cups cooked! Pasta is made with semolina flour and water, a 2:1 ratio. One must visit Bari, the capital of Puglia, to tour the old medieval city of Bari Vecchia, where grandmas (nonnas) sit outside their homes and behind wooden worktables dusted with semolina flour, making pasta to sell for 5 euros per kilo. If you happen to get 1, 3 or 5-gigante orecchiette thrown in to the mix, then you’re lucky! It’s an art that hopefully will not be lost. Italian coffee (caffé) is a form of art with a specific coffee drink for every time of the day. Caffé corretto is thrown back like a shot. Cappuccino and brioche are for breakfast. You’ll never find a Starbucks here. Almond milk is local and the Mediterranean diet is alive and well. California Zinfandel (red wine) is thought to be a replica of Puglia’s Primitivo, both derived from an ancient Croatian grape variety.

There are multi-generational family farms (masserias) producing olives, grapes, almonds, cherries, apricots, plums, peaches, hand harvested wheat, fava beans, chicory, tomatoes, fennel, onions, figs, lemons, limes, dates, herbs, pomegranates and so on. More than any other region in Italy, Puglia is the real deal, a groundswell of authenticity that must be visited first hand.

Once again, I have teamed up with Puglia’s premier touring company, Southern Visions. This seven day customized culinary and cultural journey is a trip of a lifetime. Your authentic experience begins in Ostuni at the Ostuni Palace, a newly renovated property with gorgeous views towards the historical center against the backdrop of the Adriatic sea with groves of ancient olive trees between the town and sea. This four star hotel is the perfect place to start exploring Ostuni, ‘la citta bianca’, and the surrounding places in the Itria Valley. There is also a small Spa at the hotel if you want to indulge in a massage or treatment. You’ll move on to one of the most beautiful Masserias in the region, a meticulously restored farmhouse known for its organic, local and biodiverse crops, which are used daily in the kitchen. The last 2 nights are at a 5-star hotel in Lecce, known as “The Florence of the South”. Over seven magical days, you’ll learn the art of pasta making from real nonnas, the local ladies that teach better than any toqued chef, sip olive oil as if it were a fine wine, learn to make cheese on an authentic masseria (farm) and learn so much more from renowned cooks and experts of the region. Coupled with all the culinary experiences including real farm to table meals, is the opportunity to live among the people of Puglia and spend time with them visiting their world renowned UNESCO sites and be privy to events that are normally closed to the public.

Join Southern Visions Travel and me in Puglia, Italy this fall 2018. This trip offers 30 continuing education units from CDR of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. For further information, itinerary, testimonials and details visit: 

Book now for a $200 discount

  • Hosted and accompanied by an award-winning registered dietitian and culinary nutritionist, Layne Lieberman, MS, RD, CDN.
  • All in-country lodging, travel and tours researched and curated by Layne Lieberman and Southern Visions Travel, a luxury, Puglia-based culinary travel company owned and operated by local regional specialists.
  • Conducted in collaboration with top local chefs, organic and biodynamic farmers, DOP bread makers, artisanal cheese-makers, and a renowned Italian nutritionist.
  • Lodging has been carefully chosen for the highest standards so that you will enjoy a Mediterranean palace experience, luxury accommodations in an ancient city and a magical retreat on an organic farm dedicated to indigenous produce grown on the estate.
  • Local and expert hosts will be present throughout the trip to share their knowledge.
  • Guests will interact with a local nutritionist to obtain firsthand information about the modern Mediterranean diet and how it relates to the health and wellbeing of the population.
  • Guests will experience cooking classes, learn about and enjoy food on-site from the most passionate and celebrated chefs and producers of the region.
  • Required local insurance is provided by Southern Vision Travel and is detailed in the travel brochure.
  • All registered dietitian nutritionists, culinary professionals and friends are welcome to register and are accepted on a first come first serve basis. Maximum number of attendees: 16.

$3,399 per person based on double occupancy 

Supplement for single occupancy $699 per person 

Book by May 1st, 2018 for a $200 per person Early Booking Discount!

To share itinerary copy and paste this link:

For info email: [email protected]

Please note that airfare is not included

In addition to the educational objectives and outcomes, the following details are included in your tour cost:

  • 7 nights lodging at 4 to 5 star historical hotels
  • 7 breakfasts
  • Visit to the old quarter of Bari “Bari Vecchia”
  • Visit to a burrata cheese farm
  • Visit to the UNESCO site of Alberobello
  • Exclusive visit to an olive oil estate during the olive harvest
  • Visit to the White City of Ostuni
  • Cooking class at Masseria Montenapoleone
  • Bakery experience in Altamura
  • Visit to the UNESCO city of Matera
  • Private winery tasting experience
  • Visit to the baroque city of Lecce
  • Cooking class in Gallipoli
  • 5 lunches and 3 dinners
  • All group transfers during the itinerary
  • Group arrival transfer from Bari Airport around 11:30am on Oct 28th
  • Group departure transfer around 09:30am to Brindisi Airport on Nov. 4th

Check out our video from Puglia (click here)