At Home in Sicily!

I return to my roots, experiencing a dish and its simplicity: fava beans gathered fresh from the farmer down the road, ricotta brought from a shepherd in a nearby hill-town, sweet onions from the earth, salt from the sea, pasta made of Sicily's grain and wine, olive oil... nourishment and pure joy...
~Renée Restivo
Founder of Soul of Sicily

The Soul of Sicily

We offer the rare chance to learn about Sicilian food, culture, literature and art, to step into the homes of Sicilians, and to begin to understand the love and devotion Sicilians have for their land.

Our programs give you the chance to experience Sicily as an insider does. Programs are all the result of a labor of love: a collaboration between Renée Restivo (writer, educator and Sicilian culinary travel pioneer) and her friends and family in Sicily -- home cooks, artists, artisans and agricultural experts and farmers. We believe that our calling is to educate travelers about the real, true genuine food of Sicily and the rich culture and traditions that the island has to offer.

Our Programs

Our programs offer an in-depth exploration of South Eastern Sicily and the area around the Baroque town of Noto. We offer organic, local sustainable food and the chance to learn about agriculture, farming, artisan food making in addition to tasting all that Sicily has to offer. Our sustainable group programs (for up to 14 participants) are at Renée's favorite agriturismo and our home cooking school (for private groups of up to 7) is at the former home of the writer Corrado Sofia.

Our programs at the villa are in memory of and to honor Corrado Sofia, along with many forgotten and unknown artists in Sicily. To learn more about Corrado Sofia and his writing and Noto, please subscribe to our newsletter and keep an eye out for Renée's book which she is fervently working on and researching at this time.

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Our Mission

All of our programs have a mission: documenting and continuing Sicily's culinary traditions, educating visitors about the island's agriculture, finding ways to travel in a more sustainable way with respect for nature and most important and often overlooked -- taking care of the Sicilian countryside to make sure it will be there for generations after us!

Our programs offer travelers to Sicily the chance to have exclusive experiences in homes with Sicilian families. Providing seasonal and specially prepared home-cooked meals and dining in the company of a Sicilian family in their home often costs more than dining at fine restaurants, and is an exclusive service. The food takes a long time to prepare (as it is all done from scratch) and most ingredients are hand-picked, carefully selected, and usually organic or fresh from the garden.

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Villa

For small private groups of 2-7 friends or family members traveling together, this charming Liberty style villa is nestled in a dramatic landscape overlooking the Mediterranean, surrounded by 200 olive trees, just a short drive from the Baroque town of Noto (a UNESCO world heritage site) and was the home of the late Sicilian writer Corrado Sofia. Like many of Sicily's best kept secrets, most Americans have never heard of him. To learn more about him, please subscribe to our newsletter as we will send some info and his writing to you soon.