Discovering Cheese with Juliet Harbutt

Following our theme for Castello di Potentino’s Study of the Senses programme which centres on the importance of fermentation in food, we are very pleased to have the expert on all things cheese, Juliet Harbutt returning to host a weekend of tasting, talks and a demonstration of cheesemaking at Potentino. An amusing and very knowledgeable speaker, she was introduced to us by our great family friend Prue Leith and hosted an inspiring tasting of classic and lesser known Italian cheeses at the castle last year.  We all learnt and ate a vast amount and insisted she came back this year. 

Juliet Harbutt, one of the world’s foremost authorities on Cheese, created and ran the British Cheese Awards for 21 years, has judged at the Swiss, French, NZ and American Cheese Awards and written numerous books and articles on cheese. The World Cheese Book, published in 9 languages, won Best Food Book in 2010 and has sold over 90.000 copies! 

Radio 4’s Food Programme recently featured Juliet in their prestigious "My Life in..." series.

The Study of the Senses at Castello di Potentino is a new programme that brings the structure back to life in its traditional role as a hub for the arts and creativity in a modern, dynamic way.  As a 21st century castle, Castello di Potentino addresses contemporary issues with reference to the wisdom of the past, through a series of interactive Learning Courses, Master Classes, and Events. Agriculture and viticulture are about growing and living, so eating and drinking well are an important element in the Potentino ethos which is concerned with the sustainability of how we inhabit a place and relate to it physically and mentally. The Events will promote a better hands-on knowledge of food, wine, music, colour, cooking, producing and developing in a mindful way that encourages people to make their own informed decisions about what they like and what they do to their minds and bodies.  Mixing traditional ideas with current trends, local with global, working with creative minds, and experts in their fields from all over the world, Potentino will provide the setting for an innovative approach to taste and sensory experience.

Helena Attlee’s latest book Lev’s Violin: An Italian adventure was published last year and broadcast as BBC Radio 4’s ‘Book of the Week’. Her bestselling The Land Where Lemons Grow: The story of Italy and its citrus fruit has been translated into several languages and won the Guild of Food Writers’ Book of the Year 2015.

Julian Evans is the author of the acclaimed biography Semi-Invisible Man: The life of Norman Lewis and Transit of Venus: Travels in the Pacific. He has presented radio and TV documentaries, reported from central Europe and written about the war in Ukraine from the frontline.

Saturday 10 September

Arrive in good time to settle in before meeting the tutors and other writers for an aperitivo followed by dinner

Sunday 11 September

Using our senses as a way of expressing experiences and connecting to readers, we explore rooting our writing in the physical
world to bring it alive

Activity: Walking the Potentino valley with a local botanist

Workshop:
Sensory writing Aperitivo and dinner at castle

Monday 12 September

Today is about building skills to commit real people to the page, using their appearance, body language, behaviour and other closely observed details

Activity: Visit to the local market

Free time for lunch in local town

Workshop: Writing people, their settings and voices

Aperitivo and dinner at castle

Tuesday 13 September

We focus on framing a process or an event to make it interesting to anyone, even to those not specifically interested in it

Activity: Local shepherds making ricotta cheese, followed by cheese tasting

Workshop: Finding the universal strand

Tasting the wines of Potentino with Charlotte Horton, followed by dinner with Rachel Roddy

Wednesday 14 September

Today is led by Rachel Roddy, acclaimed author, Italian food expert and Guardian columnist

Activity: Learning to make pasta with Rachel in Potentino’s 13th-century kitchen

Lunch is home-made pasta –
of course!

Workshop: Armed with our
flour-covered notes and thoughts, we will talk and do three generative
exercises. We’ll also look at strategies for writing about food and practical tips for recipe writing, and to conclude will talk about how to find a sustainable, enjoyable writing process and how to balance messy creativity with structure, form – and dinner

Feedback session with Rachel, Helena and Julian

Aperitivo and ‘Getting published’, a question-and-answer session with Derek Johns, drawing on his career as an editor, publisher and leading
literary agent

Dinner at castle

Thursday 15 September

On the final day we take you through a series of invaluable techniques for revising and polishing your work

Workshop: Ultimate editing: putting it all together

Lunch

Free time to work on your writing

Celebration and sharing of your work

Dinner at a local restaurant

Friday 16 September

Departure

[We reserve the right to make changes to this timetable if necessary]

“Julian and Helena worked beautifully together in creating a transformative learning experience. Taking part has raised my standard of what I expect from my writing dramatically”

“I came to Potentino without an agenda, but I leave Potentino inspired to share my stories”

“Thank you both so much for a wonderful experience. I appreciate all your knowledge, generosity and hard work”

Board and lodging at Castello di Potentino

All sessions with Julian and Helena

Pasta-making Workshop and talk with Rachel Roddy

"Behind the scenes in publishing" discussion with Derek Johns

Trips for planned excursions

Last night's dinner at a local restaurant

What's not included

Flights

Transfers to and from Potentino (can be booked as an extra)

Meals on planned excursions

Prices

Prices vary by room choice and number of guests sharing the room.

A single person is € 2315.

Two people sharing a room is € 2000 per person.

Three people sharing a room is €1895 per person.

Please note

If you would like to pay a deposit

The payment system asks for payment in full. If you would rather pay a non-refundable 25% deposit at the time of booking, please enter the code DEPOSIT25 at checkout. The final payment will be due one month before the start of the course.

If you have any issues booking

Sometimes, it takes a few attempts to clear the cart if you need to make any changes to your room selection etc.

If you have any issues at all, please contact Alexander Greene alexander.greene@potentino.com

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Discovering Cheese with Juliet Harbutt

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