Sunday, 10 January 2021

Monday, 26 October 2020

The magical medieval village of Toffia- Video

Toffia, a medieval hilltop village, dates back to 940AD is nestled in the Sabine Hills, just north of Rome, Italy. This little village, population over just over 1200 residents, has an active community. Toffia is best known for it's music and food festivals held over the Summer period. 

Toffia is unknown to mass tourism and continues to offer an authentic taste of Italian life. Come along and 'live like a local' in joining Convivio Rome 4 and 5 Day Italian Cooking Holidays where you will be staying in one of the recently renovated homes within the historic walls. Let Chef Guido and Sally, from Convivio Rome, bring Italy alive for you.

For more information:

Bookings now being taken, (with fully transferable deposit) for 2021 and 2022. 

Monday, 12 October 2020

Rome Street Food Chef Guido's Memories of his Childhood in Rome

Rome Street Food

Rome Street Food Carts make up a part of Chef Guido's childhood memories, growing up in Rome.
  Between Piazza Navona, Trastevere and the Colosseum, street food was everywhere, suppli (arancini), deep-fried, crispy vegetables were quickly served in a cone of thick paper and often consumed on the go. Although more rare today, these delicacies are still available around Rome and Chef Guido is going to show you how to prepare fantastic Rome Street Food how he remembers it from his childhood in the Ethernal City!  

There's something special about delicious snacks that you associate with your childhood, don't you think?

Join us in Italy for Chef Guido's Rome Street Food Workshop, Today

Chef Guido wants to share these childhood memories and ROME STEET FOOD recipes with you LIVE on Saturday 24th and Sunday 25th October, 2020, via Zoom. 


JOIN CHEF GUIDO'S ROME STEET FOOD WORKSHOP ON ZOOM ( 2 LIVE cooking classes each day, to suit both Australia and American/UK timezones)

ENROL NOW to Book your Place









Thursday, 27 August 2020

Podcast: Foodie Finds in the Sabine Hills, near Rome - Chef Guido and Sally talk to Katy from Untold Italy

Find out more about Sally and Chef Guido and about the beautiful Rome countryside, in Italy, where they have been living and working for the past 15 years. 

Grab a glass of wine, sit back and enjoy this podcast with Chef Guido and Sally, talking to Katy Clarke from Untold Italy.

What made them move to the Sabine Hills?

What is it like to live in a small medieval hilltop village in Italy?

What is the perfect time of year to visit  this unspoilt area?

Why is the extra virgin olive oil of Sabina so famous? 

We invite you to listen to this Podcast and Interview by Katy Clarke from 'Untold Italy' with Chef Guido and Sally from Convivio Rome Italian Cooking Classes and Italian Culinary Vacations


Complementary Italian Cooking Package

Convivio Rome Italian Cooking Classes and Cooking Holidays 

Convivio Rome Day Italian Cooking and Touring Experiences

Rome Wine Tours - Half Day Winery and Wine Tasting Tour 

Rome Olive Tours - Half Day Rome Olive Oil Tasting and Olive Grove Tour

Virtual Live Italian Cooking Parties and Cooking Classes

Guido's Cook Club - Monthly Membership

Wednesday, 5 August 2020

Chef Guido and James talk about Seasonal Foods in Italy and Special Festivals Foods

Invitation for Sunday August, 9 

Chef Guido and James, from 'Wandering Italy',
will be talking about Seasonal Foods and Special foods for Festivals and Local Celebrations

LIVE ZOOM Conversation - Sunday August, 9th at 7.00- 7.30pm (Italian time)

View LIVE on Zoom - link needed: 

You are invited to join us LIVE on Zoom 

Sunday, Aug 9, 2020 at 7.00 to 7.30PM (Italian time)*

to listen to Chef Guido
chat with James, from 'Wandering Italy'
Seasonal foods, Sagra, and Special foods selected for Festival Days

ZOOM LINK: to join in to listen and ask questions LIVE

*TIME: Sunday, Aug 9, 2020 10.00 AM PDT California / 1.00PM EST New York / 6.00pm UK / 07:00 PM Rome (Italian time) / 5.00AM next day Sydney, Australia / 7.00AM next day New Zealand

To join Zoom Conversation, LIVE: 

Use this Zoom link:

Meeting ID: 881 5374 5959

If you can't make it Live, this fun and interesting discussion will be recorded for you to view, later on 'Convivio Rome Cooking Holidays' Facebook page.

Who is James? James is an avid Italian Food Expert who has been writing about traditional Italian food on La Cucina Povera and on Travelling around Italy, for many years. You can find James on Wandering Italy and  'Traditional Italian Food'

James, works together with Martha, who has runs Martha's Italy  and Italy Travel 2 excellent sources of information to help plan your trip to Italy. 
See you 'LIVE' this Sunday on Zoom
Sally and Guido

Lazio Foods and Sabina Olive Oil - Chef Guido Talks to James Martin - Direct from Italy

Direct from the Rome Countryside

Chef Guido from Convivio Rome Italian Cooking Holidays 
James Martin, from Wandering Italy and La Cucina Povera 

Talk about Traditional Italian Food and Italian Culture

Lazio Cuisine and Sabina Olive Oil

Both James and Guido have such a great passion for traditional Italian cuisine. 

NB. You can also find a recording of this Interview on our Convivio Rome Italian Cooking Holidays Facebook Page

Sunday, 12 July 2020

Rome Day Trip: the Sabine Hills

The Sabine Hills: a perfect day trip from Rome 
Only 35 minutes from Rome's outskirts and just north of the Capital, perfect for a day out in the countryside or a longer stay as part of a relaxing holiday, the Sabine Hills (Sabina) will reward its visitors with ancient medieval history, unspoilt landscape, renaissance palaces castles and monasteries, cultural events, art exhibitions, hiking trails and of course the 'Sabina DOP' extra virgin olive oil from its olive groves.
Toffia, 930AD is the oldest medieval village in Sabina (the Sabine Hills)
Dating back to 1200's, this medieval hilltop village is a hidden treasure
Unspoilt countryside
The way the Sabine Hills are still today very rural and unspoilt is almost miraculous, despite its vicinity with a big city like Rome. The landscape of Sabina is quintessentially Italian, with its rolling hills covered by olive groves and fruit orchards and dotted with medieval hilltop villages and castles. Because of the olive trees and other evergreen mediterranean plants, the Sabine hills are always very green, all year round. A visit to one of the many hilltop villages in the area, will reveal beautiful views over valleys and mountains in the far distance. 

Views over olive groves and hilltop villages in the Sabine Hills

The Sabine Hills offers magnificent views over unspoilt countryside
Sabina is an ancient land where civilisation started way before Rome and the local archaeological museum in Fara Sabina tells a story of walled cities, powerful kings and the development of fine art, pottery, jewellery and elaborate bronze manufacts from 2,600 years ago. Three of the seven kings of Rome, Tito Tazio, Numa Pompilio and Anco Marzio, were from here. 
During the middle ages, Sabina was part of the Holy Roman Empire and thanks to Charlemagne and his land donations, a local monastery called Farfa became a huge economic and military power in the area. The Farfa monastery owed its wealth to olive oil production for many centuries, as it was the largest landowner in Central Italy and it become an independent city state, its borders reaching well into modern Tuscany, Umbria and Le Marche.
500 year old streets run between the ancient monastery and artisan shops in Farfa

National parks such as Monti Lucretili and vast conservation areas allow those passionate about hiking or mountain biking to explore the area using ancient  trails, walking through green valleys, woods and cultivated land. However, even just visiting some of the villages in Sabina will be an experience in itself. Medieval villages like Toffia, Castelnuovo di Farfa, Fara Sabina, Farfa, Bocchignano or Montopoli have impressive defensive walls, beautifully decorated renaissance palaces and ancient churches.
Toffia, one of the most beautiful hilltop villages in the Sabine Hills
A maze of picturesque alleyways, archways and little piazzas will welcome the visitor, almost resembling a movie set, without the mass tourism of other Italian regions. Impressive medieval castles can be seen in Rocca Sinibalda (Castello Cesarini, 1084 AD) and in Frasso Sabino (Castello Sforza, 955 AD).
Medieval streets and picturesque doorways in Castelnuovo di Farfa
 Great photo opportunities lie within the medieval streets
Today, Sabina is well known for its art and music festivals which are organised throughout the year. Toffia is famous for its "Festa del Centro Storico', an art, music and street theatre festival which lasts for 5 nights in mid-August and attracts more than 3,000 people every night. Toffia is also known for its very active theatre, run by 'Officina 33'. In Fara Sabina there is an international Jazz Festival in July and Casaprota hosts the interesting art and music 'Arterie festival'.
A local music trio, called 'Lamorivostri', keeps traditional music alive, with frequent concerts in the Sabina area and in Rome.
Sabina is well known for its music and art festivals 
Sabina is famous for its extra virgin olive oil, the very first in Italy to receive the DOP denomination. Olive oil has been produced here for millennia (there is an olive tree that's 2000 years old) and is known for being light and flavoursome at the same time. The area is also well known for pecorino cheese, olives, salami and of course guanciale (cured pork cheek), necessary for any amatriciana or carbonara sauce. Cooking Holidays are run in Toffia. One day cooking classes, as well as olive oil tours, and wine tours are also offered in the Sabine Hills area.
There are many Restaurants to choose from in Sabina. For an interesting combination of traditional dishes with a touch of creativity there is 'La Taverna del Corsari' in Montopoli.

How to get there from Rome
Fara Sabina is the best place to begin to explore the Sabine Hills. There is an excellent direct train departing every 15 minutes from many stations in Rome (Ostiense, Trastevere and Tiburtina, for example) to Fara Sabina Station. It takes 39 minutes to get from Rome Tiburtina to Fara Sabina. Here there are buses to many different villages in the Sabina area. By car, the direct way is via Rome-Florence (A1) motorway, Fiano Romano exit, then following signs to Rieti and Via Salaria, then to Fara Sabina.
If you join any of our Convivio Rome Culinary Holidays, or day activities such as our cooking classes, olive tour and wine tours, we include a free pick up and return service to our local train station.

Wine Tours:

Visit the Sabine Hills, Virtually: Convivio Rome are also offering fun Virtual Cooking Parties and LIVE Cooking Classes, where you can learn authentic Italian cuisine in a fully interactive live cooking class. If you wish get an authentic taste of Italy, and meet like minded people, you can also join Chef Guido's monthly membership called 'Guido's Cook Club'

Train information: can be found on site
Bus information: can be found on
© Guido Santi, 2020
Additional background information on Guido: Guido Santi is an eighth generation Roman who has a passion for cooking traditional Italian cuisine and for local, fresh, organic food and wine. As a follower of the Slow Food philosophy, he supports and promotes local farmers and the 'zero kilometres' philosophy. Guido runs "Convivio Rome" with his Australian wife Sally, offering cooking classes, 3 and 5 night culinary holidays, plus olive oil tours and wine tours in or nearby the medieval hilltop village of Toffia, Sabina (Italy), just north of Rome. You can follow Convivio Rome on Facebook and on Instagram
View from Guido's home and the Convivio Rome Cooking School