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“not a good experience”

Vecchia Scuola Bolognese
Ranked #113 of 346 things to do in Bologna
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Recommended length of visit: More than 3 hours
Reviewed 19 October 2015

We had lunch there last week after having enquired the day before about the activities of the school. Maybe if we had followed cooking classes, we would have liked it, however, the food we were served was pretty awful ! The wine was undrinkable and to charge 2,5 Euros/person cover charge is totally inadmissible for a cookery school. The next day we had a great lunch at the Pizzeria Il Portico - much, much better and cheaper than the scuola. A place to be avoided

Thank 55charly2843
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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5 - 9 of 97 reviews

Reviewed 23 June 2015 via mobile

On a whim, and because it was just down the street from where we were staying, I signed myself and my two kids up for a pasta making class. I've studied different kinds of cooking in various places, but this was a really lovely experience. It's very much a hands-on class, which is necessary for something like pasta where you gauge much of the proceedings by feel and where it takes some practice to get things right.

We made and cut the dough for tagliatelle, tortellini, tortellone, farfalle, and some other things. While waiting for our pasta to rest before cutting it, we helped more advanced students make filings and fill tortellini. Our instructor, Alessandro, was hilarious, and he really helped show us the reasons behind how you roll out the dough, how dry and thin it needs to be for the different types of pasta, etc. He was very engaging with my kids too, who now want to make pasta at home.

Afterward we got to have a delightful lunch of tortellini in brodo, tagliatelle al ragù, and tortellone. Everyone at the school was helpful and sweet, and many of them are of the same family. I believe the lessons would work whether or not you speak Italian, but it helped that I speak some Italian, as there were some translations I could help with.

Regardless of whether you end up putting your newfound skills to use, it gives one a much deeper appreciation of the effort and tradition behind one of the best cuisines in the world -- Bolognese cooking!

3  Thank Mary B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 25 April 2015 via mobile

Had no real idea of what to expect, but thoroughly enjoyed the experience. Class goes through the basics - ideal for somebody who's only ever ripped the top off a pack of penne before. Good fun and now not daunted by the prospect of wielding a 1m+ rolling pin!

1  Thank Moinoniin
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 5 November 2014

I was the only American tourist taking the class, so I had to do all the mixing, rolling, and folding myself. My teacher, Carla, was very patient with me "pinch, pinch, pinch" and I did a pretty good job making tortellini, tortelloni, and tagliatelle. After you make the pasta, they cook it for you and serve it with a sauce. I really liked the pork tortellini in brodo and the tagliatelle with meat sauce. That was some of the best pasta I had on my trip.
The school is just a few blocks north of Neptune's fountain on the piazza. Also, they provide a locker for you to store your things while you cook.

1  Thank LDBlock
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviewed 23 July 2014

I've been making pasta "by hand" using my KitchenAid for years. Here we did it all by hand and the results were amazing!

A word about our teacher, Andrea. He was the best. He was both very good at explaining, showing and correcting our technique. As someone whose taught people psychomotor skills (stuff you do with your body not your mind) for 24 years in a university I appreciate some who does this well. Also he was charming and hysterically funny. I thought my wife was going to hurt herself from laughing so hard. His night job should be as a stand up comic. As a result everyone in the class had an absolutely great time. One of the owners, I think, Alessandro kept checking to see how we were doing. He was a hoot too. Clearly setting the tone! Andrea's English was very good. He made some rather charming errors but was very happy to get suggestions on pronunciation. and better choices of words.

First we made the Sfoglia (traditional pasta dough from Bologna flour and eggs only) by hand with only a fork as a tool. The egg yolks had this amazing orange color. We were told that is because of their diet and needed to give the pasta color. Then we hand rolled the pasta out with a 40 inch rolling pin. We cut the pasta for tortolloni or tortellini using cutters that were like multiple pizza cutters on the same shaft. We let some dry to later cut into tagliatelle with a large pasta knife (it looks like a long dull Nakiri knife). Our class had 6 people and we all worked together to hand fill and then fold and seal the tortolloni or tortellini.

We then got to eat this. This was one of the best meals I had in Italy. We were there for 2.5 weeks. Of course the tortellini was served en brodo. My wife had had brodo the night before in a regular restaurant and not nearly as good. The tortolloni was in a tomato butter sauce. I never had anything like that before in any Italian restaurant. I couldn't stop eating it. The tagliatelle was al ragù (we were told never to call this Bolognese sauce!). This was an epiphany. I realize I've never really had ragù (Bolognese sauce) before. Everything else was paled in comparison.

This was supposed to last 3 hours. We were there for 5 hours. We had a lovely meal with our classmates. This was one of our top meals in Italy and the fact that we made the pasta and had so much fun doing it was an added plus.

I think Bologna is an under-rated city, one sees so little about it in guide books. I want to return AND will definitely take more cooking classes here!

2  Thank Stephen P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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