mama florence cookins school


Mama Flornece



Mama Florence Cooking School invites you to experience the authentic flavors of Italy in the heart of Florence. Our cooking course is designed to offer a warm and welcoming atmosphere that is reminiscent of an informal home setting. Here, you will rediscover the joy and importance of cooking and eating, and learn to appreciate the simple things in life.

mamaflorence customized cooking apron

Cooking with us

At Mama Florence, we are dedicated to promoting sustainable farming and using only the freshest local Tuscan ingredients in our recipes. Our passionate chefs and instructors are dedicated to passing down their knowledge and skills from generation to generation, ensuring that the art of Italian cooking is never lost.

In our cooking classes, we believe in the power of creating emotional connections through cooking and sharing a meal. Join us for a culinary journey in Florence, Italy, where you will not only learn new techniques, but also experience the deep cultural significance of food in Italian society. Enroll in our course today and discover the magic of Mama Florence Cooking School.

vanessa held and filippo bartolotta mamaflorence owners


Owner Vanessa Held knew she wanted to open an authentic cooking school in Florence. She also knew she wanted it to stand apart from the crowd. She wanted a cooking school that would reflect her connection to the land with sustainably sourced local pdroducts, fresh seasonal menus, and amazing wines to showcase the very best Italy has to offer, all in a beautiful and exclusive, warm setting. She and co-owner and business parter Filippo Bartolotta had 25 years of combined experience in the wine and food business and joined forces in starting this new venture. Vanessa has been running the school since 2015.


mamaflorence support team

The Team

Our exceptional support team is always available over email and phone and ready to process your order, note your food preferences, create a special event for you, or to help you discover authentic Tuscan food. Comprised of Booking Manager Tania Hirst, Hospitality Manager LisaOperations and Booking Specialist Lavinia, and Market Walk Guide and Chef’s Assistant Annika Mårtensson there is always someone available to ensure participants enjoy their time at MaMa Florence cooking school to the fullest. 

Meet the Chefs!

Stefano Chef


Embark on a gastronomic journey with Chef Stefano, whose culinary expertise is deeply rooted in the heart of Italian cuisine.  Born into a family of fervent food enthusiasts, hailing from Bologna, the Emilia-Romagna region's food capital, he personifies the passion and heritage that Italian cooking embodies. With an unwavering commitment to his roots, he brings the rich traditions of Emilia's egg pasta to life in every dish he creates.

Beyond the kitchen, Chef Stefano's artistic flair extends to photography, entrepreneurship, audio sound systems and crafting audio systems from scratch, and even a background in the Academy of Arts in Bologna. His journey began at 15, working in traditional trattorias and catering establishments to fund his studies and deepen his culinary insights. A man of diverse passions, Chef Stefano's love for

With a heart as generous as his culinary creations, Chef Stefano cooks not just for himself, but for a large and close-knit family. Each dish he prepares carries the essence of love, tradition, and the joy of sharing unforgettable meals.

Filippo Nardi che Mama Florence


Chef Filippo: globetrotter of taste! Backpacking from Florence, he has traveled the world to embrace every possible form of flavors and pairings. Passionate about the history of different cultures and their food habits, Filippo never gets stuck in his way or rules that limit his desire to taste and experience everything edible. Together with his sommelier wife, Filippo has put together bold and extraordinary wine pairings that will make you touch the stars with just one sip.

After traveling mainly in South America and Asia. A true chef of substance, Filippo considers a meal a loving gesture to his fellow man, just like a caress from a loving parent that lifts the worst of days.

Sociable and outgoing, Filippo loves to share his knowledge and always learn more from others to ensure every guest is satisfied at the table, whatever it takes. His Tuscan hospitality and passion for food to gives back something of what he was given as a visitor in the countries he visited, in a "karmic" way.

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Le Baccanti Tours S.r.l Viale F.Petrarca 12 | 50122 Firenze | +39 055221138 | [email protected] | P.IVA 05446100488
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