The Enoteca Corsi Culinary Experience Sold Out Again


By Charlotte Dammicco / News Reporter | Edited by Eleonora Prior

Students preparing for cooking at Enoteca Corsi. Credit: Charlotte Dammicco

ROME —The JCU Culinary Experience at Enoteca Corsi continues to be sold out months before registration. The osteria offers three cooking sessions per semester where students can learn about traditional Roman cuisine and taste traditional Roman dishes. 

In each “culinary experience,” Chef Claudia Paiella welcomes students with a short presentation and shows all the ingredients needed to make the dishes. After putting on their aprons, students start cooking under the Chef’s direction.  

Chef Paiella says these sessions help international students learn about food and quality, to go and create a simple but genuine dish, and eventually avoid canned or prepared food. It is very important for students to learn how to cook individually and understand the process of cooking. 

At Enoteca Corsi, a traditional Roman osteria and enoteca near Largo Argentina, students learn the process of handmade pasta, including fettucine, penne and ravioli. Participants also try pasta amatriciana, cacio e pepe, carbonara, as well as Roman pizza. 

The Culinary Experience offers students “who are curious to know how to cook Italian dishes” the tools they need to cook a simple dish with total independence, says Director of Student Services Department at John Cabot University, Pilar Murguia. 

“They can be very simple dishes that are delicious, but also help you to learn how to cook with your friends, with your roommates, and how to select the food as well,” said Murguia. 

The menu varies depending on the number of students attending. If students are more interested in traditional Roman cuisine, they can also participate a second time to try new dishes.

Enoteca Corsi entrance. Credit: Charlotte Dammicco 

Each session lasts 2 hours and 30 minutes, and three sessions per semester, instead of five as previously set, has been the ideal number once it was observed that students would participate more actively at the beginning of the semester rather than attending activities towards the end of the semester.   

The Student Services also decreased the maximum number of participants from 25 to 15, so that students could better engage better with the chef and with each other. 

Ingredients used for the cooking class. Credit: Charlotte Dammicco 

 Josephine Solomon, a study abroad student from Northeastern University majoring in Journalism, Screen Studies and Design, attended the first event in September and then the second in early October.  

“I feel it’s important to be immersed in Italian culture. It’s so unique, and I’ve never experienced anything like it before,” Solomon said. “It was important to take time to see how Italians make their food.” 

Solomon said it’s also important for students to branch out with this type of activities. Being a first-year student abroad is “very hard,” she says, but she got to meet other first years students through this experience. 

The Culinary Experience at Enoteca Corsi began in 2017 with previous JCU Cultural Programs Coordinator, Rebekah Sagredo. Before then, the Student Services Office offered small-group cooking classes with professional chefs at Guarini, in the common kitchen area. As the number of students increased, members of the Student Services Office started organizing the Culinary Experience off campus.   

Student Activities- recovering from COVID-19 

From 2019 to 2020, about 106 students attended the Culinary Experience. During 2020 to 2021 the number of students decreased because of the COVID-19 pandemic, and only the summer sessions were available for in-person participation to eight students. 

Enoteca Corsi students’attendance from the academic years starting from 2019. Courtesy: Student Services 

From 2021 to this academic year, the number of students participating has raised 25 percent. 

JCU currently offers activities that varies between trips around Italy and numerous workshops in which international students along with Italian students can participate during the fall and spring semesters, as well as during the summer session according to Student Activities and Trips office.  

These activities are often sold out and require signing up in advance. Most of the JCU activities proposed on the JCU Activities and Trips website are attended during the first few months of the semester, which helps students establish social relationships as well as avoid encountering cultural shock. 

Every semester, Student Services Office provides a list of activities via email to all the “core” students and inform then in advance about the types of future events will be offered, as well as enables them to fill a survey that will later help the members of the office decide what choices are the most adequate, according to Murguia. 

For more information, contact Student Services at