the team

A collaborative of professional chefs, artists, hospitality experts and nature lovers.

our retreats were born from shared passion for the arts, food, sustainable tourism, and countless years of work in the hospitality industry.       

Rissa Miller: Chef & Founder, Rome Retreats. Cordon Bleu-trained chef, Slow Food advocate and art historian.  After more than 20 years working in the restaurant and gourmet food industries across the U.S and Mediterranean, Rissa started Rome Retreats in 2016 to offer experiences to fellow food and art lovers with sustainable eco-touristic practices.     

Johnny Madge: Tour Guide, Olive Oil Sommelier. Internationally acclaimed olive oil sommelier, expert forager, marble sculptor, and extraordinary host, Johnny has been living in Sabina for 35 years and offers infinite knowledge and frequent laughter to all our guests. 

James Johnstone: Tour Guide. Award-winning historical walking tours guide, linguist, translator, story-teller and Canadian transplant - James brings his knowledge, passion, and exquisite fashion sense to every walking tour. Read his wonderful blog about Sabina here

Pino Ficara: Chef and Teacher. Trained Chef in French Culinary Arts & Pâtisserie with over 15 years experience in NYC restaurants, his own catering company and professor of Culinary Education in Paris, London, Tuscany and the South of France.

Julia FicaraPasta-maker and Teacher.  Pasta maker trained in Bologna, with over 6 years experience. 3 years supplying Parisians & Paris restaurateurs as well as educational services in both France and Italy. And since 2016 working in Rome teaching and Italians and foreigners alike.

Luigi Caranti: Villa Owner & Manager. University professor and Kant scholar who dreams of being a farmer.  When he's not teaching or writing, Luigi owns and operates his agroturismo villa property, tending his olive trees, crafting his own wine, and arguing with his tractor. 


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