Here’s your chance to break your kids out of that peanut butter and jelly rut: enroll them in one of these upscale culinary experiences that vary from picking freshly laid eggs on a real working farm to stretching out pizza dough surrounded by scenic mountains. With this much fun and flavor at the table, we’re confident you won’t have any issue with them clearing their plates.
Four Seasons Hotel Firenze
See what makes Tuscan fare so spectacular with a family-friendly excursion to a real working farm when you and your brood stay at this lovely Forbes Travel Guide Five-Star Florence hotel.
Take part in the property’s Table to Farm experience and get the chance to spend the day on a country estate in the Chianti region, where you and your children can pick vegetables, feed pigs, pick up freshly laid eggs and assist with the summer wheat harvest.
At lunchtime, feast on locally grown products while regaling each other with the day’s unforgettable activities.
Windsor Court Hotel
Get a taste of English country life when you book a stay at this regal Four-Star New Orleans hotel. Even the little ones can get in on the bona fide British feel with monthly themed afternoon teas on offer in Le Salon.
On August 11 and 12, look out for a whimsical take on this traditional service as Alice and the Mad Hatter take over the parlor, serving Wonderland-themed treats and 26 exceptional varieties of tea.
While the kiddos nibble and pose for photos with the larger-than-life characters, the grown-ups can sip on specialty tipples.
The Jefferson, Washington, D.C.
Plume, the tony Five-Star fine-dining restaurant inside this boutique Four-Star D.C. hotel, surprisingly caters to kids. While their dressed-up parents order adult beverages from a classic cocktail cart, pint-sized foodies can pick their own libations from the nonalcoholic tableside trolley.
Forget chocolate milk — sweet sips like lightly sparkling juice made with organic plums, berries, pears and currants pair well with the multi-course meals.
The Ritz-Carlton, Lake Tahoe
Tiny travelers can learn the art of pizza making while being surrounded by the great outdoors at this family-friendly Four-Star resort.
Offered on weekends through July 1, and then nightly through Labor Day, this kid-focused cooking class lets little ones work with the hotel’s culinary crew to build their own pies at the alfresco Backyard Bar & BBQ restaurant. During the session, they’ll learn how to stretch dough, pick toppings and fire up their pizzas in the restaurant’s brick oven, before dining on their own delicious creations.
JW Marriott Venice Resort & Spa
Kids of all ages can take a deep dive into Italian cuisine (beyond spaghetti and meatballs) at the Sapori Cooking Academy, which is located inside this stunning Forbes Travel Guide Recommended Venice hotel situated on its own private island.
Teens will like the fact that the six-hour class begins with a boat ride and chef-led tour of the city’s Rialto Market to shop for ingredients. Afterward, they’ll learn to cook a meal of fresh pasta, pizza or focaccia that will be eaten at the end of class.
For those with shorter attention spans (little ones between six and 12), two-hour options are available as well.
Kimpton Seafire Resort & Spa
If your kids want to see how a large resort turns out exceptional food, have them tour this Grand Cayman hotel’s signature restaurant, Ave. Kiddos ages four to 12 can go behind the scenes and into the kitchen to meet the executive chef of the Mediterranean eatery. They’ll get to see all sorts of culinary action, be designated an honorary Seafire chef and receive a recipe book to take home.
The Ritz-Carlton, Grand Cayman
You better believe a Four-Star resort with a restaurant from renowned chef Eric Ripert takes its food seriously, and now children ages four to nine can learn to do the same.
The Ambassadors in the Kitchen class is a three-hour experience where aspiring toques don chef hats and aprons, enjoy a hands-on lesson from hotel chefs and even peruse the onsite organic garden for ingredients to make a dish inspired by local cuisine.
Acqualina Resort & Spa
Why can’t kids learn some fundamental life skills while on vacation? This Five-Star Sunny Isles resort is up to the challenge, which is why every Wednesday afternoon an etiquette coach is on hand to teach your little ones lessons in good behavior, such as the art of fine dining.
Tiny travelers can take their new skills for a spin at the resort’s Forbes Travel Guide Recommended Italian restaurant, Il Mulino New York.