10. From Florence: Parmesan and Balsamic Vinegar Factory Tour
Step back in time to learn how Parmigiano Reggiano is made with this visit to a ‘caseficio,’ or cheese factory. Find out why the provinces of Parma, Modena and Reggio Emilia are the only ones that can produce authentic Parmigiano Reggiano. Watch cheesemakers at work as they cook the milk to separate the whey and lift the Parmigiano Reggiano, followed by a visit to the aging room. Here, admire the rows upon rows of cheese wheels aging and inhale their sweet perfume the air. Finish the tour by tasting Parmesan cheese paired with honey and marmalade.
Afterward, make your way to Modena and pay a visit to the traditional food market. Inside the market, enjoy a Lambrusco wine tasting accompanied by traditional Modena ham and more. Fall in love with this sweet frizzante wine that has become a symbol of the Modena province. Then stop for lunch in a typical Modenese trattoria and enjoy an authentically prepared 3-course Italian meal served with a fantastic Lambrusco wine. After lunch, take a “passeggiata” (leisurely walk) around the streets of Modena. Car lovers can pay a visit to the Enzo Ferrari Museum of Modena.
Next, head to an Acetaia (balsamic vinegar factory) where you will have a private tour of the cellars. Receive a full explanation of the vinegar making process, from the pressing of the grapes and cooking the wort in the boiler, to the filtration and mixing. You will also have the opportunity to taste the balsamic vinegar “Tradizionale” and “Extravecchio”, before heading back to Florence.