Last weekend I headed out with my classmates on a school trip to Parma and Northern Italy. I had been looking forward to this trip for quite some time not only because all of the free food, but because this semester I have been studying Italian business models. This trip was all about seeing Italian family businesses in action. I have been taking a “Made in Italy” class while I’m here in Milan, and I have studied everything from fashion houses to cheese factories in order to understand how Italian businesses thrive after generations of perfecting their craft. This weekend trip gave me a chance to take my learning out of the classroom and experience these businesses for myself!
We started our trip with a visit to Acetaia Sereni in Modena where we toured their vineyards and tasted their amazing balsamic vinegar. We had a beautiful lunch on the property and got a hands-on look at their production with a guided tour by the Sereni family themselves.
On Saturday, we headed out to Ferrarini’s Parmesan Cheese Factory in Puianello, where we also enjoyed a private and interesting tour with the family who has been perfecting their Parmesan cheese for years. We got to look at their amazing aging room, which holds over 30,000 wheels of cheese!
After our delicious Parmesan cheese tour, we headed to the Ferrari museum in Maranello to see some of the coolest vintage cars I’ve ever laid eyes on.
On Sunday we wrapped up our trip with an amazing visit to the Castello di Torrechiara in Torrechiara. We hiked, enjoyed the view and marveled at the amazing murals still intact inside the castle walls.
We finished up our weekend with an extensive tour and wine tasting at La Moretti vineyards.
This weekend was yet another fantastic experience in Italy. I have loved getting to know Italy as the semester goes on and I can’t wait for the next weekend I get to spend at “home” in this beautiful country.