May 14, 2013
Something is beyond luscious in the island of Santorini this summer!
The municipality of Thira has declared 2013 as the “Year of Gastronomy” and a series of delicious events are set out in a creative scenery of gastronomic delight.
Vedema, the famed Luxury Collection Resort, will trace Santorini’s culinary evolution from ancient times to today, to reveal the uniqueness of the island’s products – from its small-scale farmed fruit, vegetables and legumes to the aromatic, crisp white wines quietly snapping up awards across the globe.
Between June 17 and July 7, 2013, the swish yet laidback, family-friendly resort – that is celebrating its 20th anniversary this year – is taking part in Santorini’s 2013 Year of Gastronomy with captivating photography exhibitions, cooking classes for adults and children, enticing restaurant menus, herb-foraging expeditions, vineyard tours, a seed exchange event, a display of ancient and modern-day cooking vessels and utensils, and rejuvenating spa treatments, among other activities.
The resort’s award-winning executive chef Melina Chomata has designed a menu of innovative, neo-Greek dishes and lost ancient recipes inspired by the archaic settlement of Akrotiri and crafted with products sourced from the resort’s own estate or local producers, in line with the property’s zero carbon emission and 100-Mile Diet policies. Accompanied by a list of selected locally-produced wines, the menu will be available to guests of Vedema’s Vinsanto restaurant, Santorini’s choice dining destination, between June 17 and July 7.
Daily cooking classes
A local ladies’ cooperative, with whom Vedema has established a close collaboration, will hold daily lessons for home cooks, showing them how to prepare hearty pies, stone oven-baked breads and fruity spoon sweets using Santorini’s raw ingredients. Participants will have the opportunity to delve into local culture and history, put the Mediterranean diet into practice, pick up traditional cooking techniques and, of course, savor the final result.
Wine tasting lessons
Vedema’s food and beverage manager Ioannis Kassandrinos will conduct daily wine-tasting lessons for guests, while a specially-designed cocktail list featuring liquid concoctions infused with herbs collected from the surrounding hills and other local products should also prove tempting.
The importance of local seeds seminar
On June 22, Vedema hosts an informative seminar titled “Hand to hand, from one generation to the next”, at which Panagiotis Sainatoudis, founder of the non-profit Peliti organization, will speak about the importance of collecting, preserving and disseminating local seed varieties. He and his team will distribute seeds of traditional Santorini products to seminar attendees.
Meanwhile, the experienced team at the resort’s Asian Spa is preparing to pamper guests with an exclusive range of beauty and wellness treatments incorporating indigenous products.
There’s nothing like relishing a regional cuisine at its geographical heart and those who choose to stay at Vedema this summer will understand why Santorini’s simple yet sophisticated gastronomic traditions have traveled well beyond the caldera cliff edge to culinary capitals like New York City, London and Melbourne.
Voted by readers of the prestigious Travel + Leisure magazine as one of the world’s 500 best hotels for 2013, Vedema comprises 45 spacious, sumptuously-appointed suites and villas and amenities include a spa, pool, jacuzzi, gym, private black sand beach, boutique and helipad.
Rates start at $323. Book a six-night stay between May 15 and September 30 and receive the seventh night free.