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Culinary Backstreets: Lisbon Eats Essentials – Lisbon, Portugal

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Blessed with some of the world’s best fish and seafood off the coast and the bounty of rich farmland inland, the Portuguese are spoilt for choice of great culinary resources. The cuisine of Lisbon, which draws from a diverse range of influences hinting at Portugal’s glorious trading past, is always based on the simple principal of supreme ingredients and a simple preparation that allows those ingredients to shine. On this half-day tour, we set out to find some of the best examples of local cuisine that Lisbon has to offer.

Our walk will begin at Lisbon’s greatest market, the Mercado da Ribeira, with a crash course in the building blocks of Portuguese cuisine. Visiting some of the market’s old-time fishmongers, produce sellers and butchers, we will explore the roots of Portuguese cuisine and then, in the market’s bustling central hall, sample some of the “fruits” of these ingredients, tasting rustic cheeses, top quality cured ham made from acorn-fed black hoofed pigs unique to the Iberian Peninsula, artisanal breads and local olive oils.

We’ll then set out to visit some of the time-honored establishments in the neighborhoods around the market. We’ll go for traditional savory pastries on the rooftop canteen of a nunnery. We’ll stop into an old, family-run grocery to try some top shelf tinned sardines – unlike any canned seafood you may have had before, this is superb – accompanied by a glass of vinho verde, the unique effervescent white wine from Northern Portugal.

At our next stop, the reincarnation of an old neighborhood institution that Lisboetas – as Lisbon’s residents are known – have been flocking to for generations, we’ll try the restaurant’s locally renowned cod fritters along with other meaty house specialties, paired with the distinct red wine from Alentejo. From there we will end the day on a sweet note, stopping in a local pastelaria for traditional pastries, before finishing with a few sips of ginjinha, a sour cherry liqueur beloved by locals and whose sweet flavor is yet another essential element that defines Lisbon’s culinary identity.

In addition to your Culinary Backstreets guide, all food consumed on the walk – more than half a dozen different edible specialties – are included in the price.  A limited selection of alcohol is served on the walks and is included in the price.

  • Price: $95 US/person; $110 US/person on weekends. Fee includes everything consumed on the walk
  • Group Size: 2-7
  • Start/End: 10:30am-2:00pm; 5:00pm-8:30pm Sundays
  • Duration: about 3.5 hours

More Info & Reservations

Culinary Backstreets offers additional tours in Lisbon, as well as tours in many other cities around the world.

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Food Lover Tour: Tapas Tour – Barcelona, Spain

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We have all tried to find “the” place to eat—where the locals go, yet undiscovered by the tourists, where it’s possible to order like the locals and enjoy a delicious meal that it would be nearly impossible to discover on your own. This sensation of being away from home and yet a part of the local scene is what our “TAPAS LOVER Tour” is all about.

The Food Lover Tour, as the name suggests, is first and foremost a tour created for lovers of good food—‘foodies’ wishing to explore the local cuisine who want to enjoy their stay in Barcelona while having fun and avoiding the typical tourist traps. Where the locals go, we go! This tapas tour is a very laid back experience with a few stops including a gastronomic dinner in the local and most loved areas in Barcelona. You’d like to know where we go and what we eat? Come and join us on the Tapas Lover Tour.

We partner with a very small group of tapas restaurants that we believe are serving the best tapas—hot and cold appetizers and snacks—in Barcelona. On this tour, we will enjoy exclusive visits to bodegas, taverns and restaurants that offer sensational traditional foods and wines popular with the local community.

Local Experience Guaranteed, Including a Gastronomic Dinner

The first stop takes place in a local “after hour bar/restaurant” very well-known by the people of Barcelona for its good atmosphere; this is where we will start our tour with a few appetizers and drinks. Here, we’ll familiarize you with the basics of our culture’s approach to dining. 

At our second stop we’ll continue enjoying appetizers, but these will be quite different from our first stop. We’ll taste succulent, heartier tapas paired with typical drinks that form the identity of our Spanish and Catalan culture and are very appreciated among the locals.

The final tapas experience is a proper gastronomic and gourmet dinner. The Food Lover Tour has been granted access to some of the “most coveted” and “must see” restaurants in town. Sit down, relax and enjoy a true culinary adventure for foodies, including the best fresh local foods, seasonal meals, wine pairings and great company. Time to enjoy! Welcome to Barcelona and welcome to the Tapas Lover Tour!

Additional Info:

• Meeting point: Gaudi’s La Pedrera (Casa Milá), Passeig de Gràcia 92.
• Starting time at 7:30PM until 11:30PM.
• You may join a small group of travelers. Please feel free to request a 100% private tour for you or for a larger group.
• Minimum 2 person per tour.
• Minimum age: 10 years old.
• Tapas tasting menus and pairing drinks included in price. The combination of the three tapas tasting menus consists of many individual dishes and make up a full and complete meal.
• Additional orders should be paid separately.
• Walking distance during the tour: approx. 1Km divided in 3 lenghts.
• Languages: English, French, Spanish, German and Italian.

More information and reservations

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Dr. Gumbo Tours: Food History Tour – New Orleans, Lousiana

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Chefs are the new rock stars and this tour is a delicious journey through New Orleans and Louisiana’s rich culinary history! Down here we’re passionate about eating, so along with your guide you will visit up to 7 locations: classic Creole restaurants, neighborhood sandwich shops, hot sauce bars, artisanal candy stores and more. Once inside you’ll sample different foods that represent the breadth and diversity of our culinary heritage: dishes like gumbo, Creole brisket, muffulettas, poboys, pralines and much more.

We cover New Orleans’ various restaurant family dynasties, we discuss recipes old and new, we visit restaurants that pre-date the American Civil War, we recommend places to eat and places to shop. When possible the chefs come out to visit the groups and discuss their influences and passions. And with so many dining options in New Orleans, why not try 7 different places in one fell swoop?!

The 3-hour walking tour is conducted at a leisurely pace and with small groups. Most of the restaurant stops feature fully stocked bars if you’d like to enjoy a cold beverage (adult or otherwise!) during the tour.

What: Food History tour in the French Quarter

When: 1-4 pm

Where: SoBou | 310 Chartres Street, New Orleans, LA

Cost: $55 (includes tour and 8+ food samples)

Extra: We go rain or shine. Please notify Doctor Gumbo Tours of any food allergies (not aversions) during check-out.

More Info & Reservations

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Miami Culinary Tours: South Beach Food Tour – Miami, Florida

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EXPERIENCE THE CULTURE, HISTORY & CULINARY DELIGHTS OF SOUTH BEACH

Join us at the South Beach Miami Food Tour to savor tasty treasures inside the beating heart of Miami Beach during a fun and engaging architectural, historical and walking tour of the Art Deco Historic District, with a culinary twist. Enjoy delicious tastings at hole-in-the-wall and mom & pop type of restaurants. Taste the best of Miami Beach’s global cuisine (“melting-pot”) with its predominate Latin, European, and American comfort food, uncovering the hidden hotspots for ceviche, authentic empanadas, homemade Cuban dishes, Refajo drink and much more. You will sit and relax while savoring different dishes, as well as stand and eat on the go as in a cosmopolitan city.

WHAT YOU WILL EXPERIENCE:

– Hear the dramatic, inspiring history & architecture of the Art Deco district.

– Get to see different movie locations and learn about the most important landmarks in the district.

– Visit local favorite restaurants and hole-in-the wall delicious ethnic eateries.

– Enjoy tastings at places where locals eat and get to know what restaurants to avoid.

– Meet people from all over the world who bond in the common interest for great culinary findings.

All food in included in the ticket price and equivalent to a full meal

ARTISAN FLORIBBEAN CUISINE

Savor one of the freshest ceviche (“seh-BEE-chay”) in town – done the traditional way. Ceviche is an old tradition in South America. Try a delicious ceviche with passion fruit, canchita and other authentic ingredients at a beautiful tavern where you will experience the real local ambiance.  A cooling beer cocktail enhances the experience at this local gem labelled ‘Best Colombian Restaurant in Miami Beach’ by The Sun Post

MIAMIAN’S FAVORITE BITE

Get a lesson of empanadas and try the most popular among locals. Crunchy on the outside filled with beef and smoked potato inside,  this traditional empanada with ahi sauce will make a perfect start to your edible journey.

A TASTE OF OLD HAVANA

Enjoy the local ambiance, and an old Havana atmosphere in this beloved local institution, while devouring a Cuban classic. Get to taste homemade mojo with your main dish of beef ropa vieja and sweet plantains mariquitas. Learn the secrets of Cuban cuisine as your guide explains each of the ingredients of this delectable dish.

MEDITERRANEAN CUISINE

Run by a young family from Verona, Italy, their vegetarian pocket made with a 300 year old recipe “mother dough” filled with homemade pesto, feta cheese, spinach and other delectable ingredients will leave you wondering how can you make another stop at this all-organic hole-in-the wall place that you certainly should not miss while you are back in the neighborhood

MOROCCAN DELICACY

You can almost taste the air of old-world Miami-glam as you float up the steps through the grand art deco entrance of  the Tides South Beach hotel where interiors are golden and glamorous. Once owned by Italian fashion designer Gianni Versace, learn the different components of what makes its luxurious interiors classic Art Deco. Tempt your senses with delicious Moroccan Cuisine at the hands of chef Omar.

A SWEET & SALTY TREAT

Crispy crunchy on the outside, moist and light on the inside combined with a sweet and salty special coating, this Spanish treat filled with homemade dulce de leche is served hot for a melt-in-your-mouth experience served minutes after made at a casual cafeteria

AUTHENTIC ITALIAN

The finest Italian ingredients melt languidly in the mouth with award-winning gelato – rightfully winning the title of  “Best Gelato in Miami” by The Miami New Times

RESTAURANTS:

Taverna Bolivar, The Tides Hotel South Beach, Manolos on the Beach, Habanos Cuban Cuisine or Larios On The Beach, Blocks Deli, Milani Gelateria.

WHY TAKE A TOUR WITH US:

– We are not your typical tour guide. We are local food experts who are energetic, fun, passionate and filled with wonderful neighborhood stories to share.

– Our guests get VIP treatment; preferred restaurant sections are assigned, and dishes served within minutes after we sit down.

– Generous servings to cater for every appetite.

– We keep our tours small giving everyone a personalized experience.

– We will introduce you to some of the best local places most visitors would never find.

VEGETARIANS:

We fully cater for vegetarians and/or non-beef, non-chicken, non-pork or non-fish diets. People that require gluten-free diets will have to pass on some of the tastings. We are not able to accommodate food allergies.

More info & reservations

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Vegas Valley Food Tours: Downtown Las Vegas Tour – Las Vegas, Nevada

Vegas Valley Food Tours creates a memorable dining and cultural experience in Downtown Las Vegas. Join us and discover the history and culture of Las Vegas while sampling delicious specialties from mom and pop ethnic eateries, restaurants, and old fashioned food shops!

The 2.5-hour tour visits the following 5-6 tasting locations (subject to change without notice):

• Cous Cous Mediterranean Cafe: Fresh, Natural, & Healthy diverse food options in the heart of downtown.
• Rachel’s Kitchen: Where wholesome food is also delicious!
• ChillSpot by SASASWEET: Pure goodness frozen on a stick.
• Uncle Joe’s Pizza: Pizza done right and so much more.
• The Beef Jerky Store: Ridiculous amount of edible fun!
• Simply Pure: Offering compassionate, chic, and delicious vegan and raw food.

The portion sizes are enough for a light dinner or an average lunch. Vegas Valley Food Tours combines architectural commentary, historical facts, local culture, and culinary insight into a unique tour experience.

Imagine walking through Vegas eating our local artisan’s most delicious foods while learning the neighborhoods from locals who love Las Vegas. Start at one tasting location and literally eat your way through the streets of Downtown Las Vegas while getting an insider’s view of the best eateries, mom and pop shops, and restaurants Vegas has to offer. All tastings are included in your ticket purchase.

What Is Not Included?

• Alcoholic beverages are not included on this tour.
• Gratuities are not included in the ticket price.

Meeting Location: 3rd near Fremont Street Experience (Exact meeting location details will be provided immediately upon purchase of tickets.)

More info & reservations

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Avital Tours: Haight Ashbury Food Tour – San Francisco, CA

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San Francisco’s famous Haight Ashbury neighborhood is most well-known for its hippie days. This time we’ll take you on a trip worth remembering through The Haight and Cole Valley culinary scene on this “Eat Your Drink” food tour. You’ll have the unique opportunity to explore Second Act’s hidden garden where one of America’s top cocktail bars sources its cocktail ingredients, to sample Russian piroshkis, and to finish with an exclusive dessert drink made by San Francisco’s only soda jerks at an authentic soda fountain. What a delicious way to be a culinary insider!

The Tastings

Taste off-menu “piggy” tacos and bacon Mexican hot chocolate from one of San Francisco’s best loved food trucks, Bacon Bacon now turned brick-and-mortar

Go behind the scenes into Second Act’s private garden where Alembic sources herbs for it’s experimental cocktails and then sip on the Southern Exposure cocktail and paired pickled quail eggs inside Food & Wine Magazine’s #1 best craft cocktail bar in America from gastropub owner Dave McLean

Watch a demo of how a piroshki is made and then bite into a savory beef and cheese piroshki from the Second Act Marketplace’s gem, Anda Piroshki

Sample and learn about Taylor’s Tonics and unusual sodas and saltwater taffy from a unique soda pop shop, The Fizzary, boasting over 900 different sodas

Sip on a Green Russian, a Dill Lactart Soda developed exclusively for Avital Tours by Virginia Miller at New York Times acclaimed Ice Cream soda fountain featuring over 75 tinctures

* Stops and tastings are subject to change based on availability. We can accommodate most dietary restrictions with advance notice. Vegetarian option available.

The Facts

  • Meet chefs, bar managers, and industry experts and chat with them!
  • Tour and exclusive menu items developed in conjunction with one of San Francisco’s top food writers, Virginia Miller of The Perfect Spot and SF Editor of Zagat
  • Available Sundays 2:30pm-5:30pm
  • Flat route with two slight hills, approximately 1 mile
  • Begins in front of  Victorian Row at the corner of Waller and Masonic (20 minutes from Downtown San Francisco)
  • Intimate tour groups limited to 12 people
  • Gratuities not included – please consider tipping your guide
  • Tour can accommodate non-alcoholic drinkers including children
  • Advance Tickets are required

More info & reservations

 

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Savor Oakland: Jack London Square and Historic Warehouse District Walking Tour – Oakland, CA

Discover one of Oakland’s oldest neighborhoods! Jack London Square and the Historic Warehouse District houses chic restaurants, hidden foodie gems and urban wineries. As you enjoy mouth-watering food and drink samples, we bring to life the historic and savory Oakland waterfront. All food tastings are included in the ticket price.

Sweet, Savory, and Soul – The Jack London Square and Historic Warehouse District Walking Tour takes place in one of Oakland’s oldest neighborhoods, along the Oakland Estuary. This narrated and guided 3.5 hour food tour visits several food and drink tasting locations. This includes Oakland-style soul food, award-winning wine, and a Bay Area favorite for coffee, just to name a few. All food and drink sampled on the tour is included in the ticket price and enough for a moderately satisfying lunch. If you have any dietary restrictions, please indicate this when you purchase your tickets.

Neighborhood Nourishment – Along with the delicious food tastings, you’ll also enjoy a hearty helping of historic, architectural and cultural information about the Jack London and Waterfront communities. Our expert guides share their knowledge of gastronome favorites, architectural gems, the vibrant art scene, and local soulful entertainment options.

Tasting Locations

These tantalizing food locations may serve their specialties on the Jack London Square / Historic Warehouse Food Tasting and Cultural Tour. Tasting locations are subject to change.
Home of Chicken and Waffles: One of Oakland’s top ranked soul-food restaurant.
Urban Legend Cellars: “Mom” and “pop” wine-makers with a knack for award winning wine.
Chop Bar: A neighborhood favorite using the finest seasonal components for its dishes.
Miette: Ranked one of the top pastry shops in the world for its dainty interior and mouth-watering delights.
Bocanova: Pan-American cuisine using local fresh ingredients in a casual fine dining environment.

When: Friday – Sunday
Time:
Tours depart at 10:30 and last 3.5 hours
How much:
$49 Adult | $40 Child (Ages 12 and under) + fees
What’s included:
All food and drink tastings, enough for a moderately satisfying lunch
Who:
All age groups and fitness levels
Capacity:
10 per tour
What to wear:
Comfortable layered clothing and shoes. Though rare, bring rain gear when wet weather is predicted.
Weather conditions:
Tour takes place rain or shine
Where:
Tour meets in the Historic Warehouse ‘hood. Detailed directions to our meeting location will be sent with purchase of your ticket.

More info and reservations

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Eye Prefer Paris Tours: Chocolate and Pastry Tour – Paris, France

Come and taste the sweetest Parisian sweets on the ultimate fantasy tour for chocoholics and pastry lovers. We will sample chocolates and macarons at 6 of the tastiest chocolate & pastry boutiques in Paris on either the Left Bank or the Right Bank. The tour also includes a stop for a cup of sinfully rich hot chocolate and an entertaining history of the origins of chocolate and macarons in France.

Your guide Richard Nahem, originally from New York, is a former pastry chef & chocolatier, and owned his own shop specializing in chocolate truffles. He lives in the Marais district of Paris and writes the popular Eye Prefer Paris blog.

Timing: By arrangement

Cost: For a private 2 1/2 –3- hour tour, 225 euros for 1 to 3 people; 75 euros each additional person. Includes samples at 4 shops. Price does not include hot chocolate.

More info and reservations

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Edible Excursions: Mission 18th Street Tour – San Francisco, CA

The Mission District is bursting with so many global flavors and culinary favorites – as well as a rapidly changing food landscape that even locals can’t keep up with what’s new – that Edible Excursions decided to launch its latest tour along the neighborhood’s Valencia Street corridor, home to some of the busiest and buzziest food ventures in this hipster haven.

Guests have a chance to talk with chefs, store owners, and restaurant employees who share behind-the-scenes stories about their creative, critically-acclaimed, and award-winning fare on a night when this area is especially lively, with the addition of a weekly market featuring local, farm-fresh grub. Bonus: An art docent from Precita Eyes will explain the importance of The Women’s Building mural, in an enclave known for its artistic vibe.  And there’s no waiting in line to try some of this neighborhood’s most coveted bites.

Tastes may include: pizza, seasonal pasta, tacos, seasonal produce, deli specials, pastries, wine, ice cream and more.

Stops may include

18 Reasons
Bi Rite Market
Bi Rite Creamery
Delfina Pizzeria
Mission Community Market
Tacolicious
Tartine Bakery
Range Restaurant
Craftsman and Wolves

Time: Thursdays 4:30pm-7:15pm

Price: $75 per person

More info and reservations

 

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Off The Eaten Track: Best Eats Of The East Village Tour – Vancouver, BC, Canada

Want to see the real Vancouver? The East Village is a colourful mix of cultures and ethnicities from its Italian heritage to the influx of Chinese and Southeast Asian influences. We guide you through this eccentric neighbourhood and sample various cuisines from restaurants, delis, bakeries, butchers, small grocery stores, and posh Italian eateries.

This tour starts with dessert. We sample some hand-crafted chocolate at Café Schokolade and get a mouth-watering lesson from their master chocolatier. Then we navigate through the oldest neighbourhood in the city stopping at 7 local shops. We pop into a charming Italian deli for a mind-blowing charcuterie platter, a multicultural grocery store for some tea samples, a family-run butcher shop for a salami tasting, and much more. We end the tour at Campagnolo Roma, one the hottest Italian restaurants in the city where we dine on traditional pizza. Delizioso!

This tour has a vegetarian option and substitutions can be made for the following allergies: shellfish & peanut. There are no alcoholic beverages on this tour.

Tour Highlights

  • 15+ samples of ethnically diverse food & beverages from 7 different stops
  • Get personal attention from the local chefs and owners
  • Be immersed in the various cultures that define this historic neighbourhood
  • Includes private van transportation to and from our downtown pick-up location
Capacity: Maximum 10 guests
Walking Distance: 1km/0.6 miles, total walking time approximately 25 minutes
Price includes: All food & beverage tastings, expert tour guide, transportation
Weather: Tour runs regardless of weather
Day: Saturdays
Time: 2:30pm
Length: 3 hours
Meeting Place: Waterfront Station, 601 West Cordova
Cost: $70 (includes tax)
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