If you want an excuse to visit a city close by or far away…
or you would like to entertain out-of-town guests with little fuss…
or just looking forward to slowing down and relaxing while you are served fabulous food all afternoon…
my recommendation is to take a food tour and have a bunch of fun!!!
a Sunday brunch tour…with Bloody Mary’s made with local ingredients perhaps…
a historical and cultural food tour or a wine tour. Since I’ve participated in many of our local food tours I thought it would be helpful to share these 10 tips to keep in mind when planning a tour:
- Let the Food Tour company know about any food allergies or food preferences (vegetarian, gluten-free, etc.). They should be able to accommodate at least the most common food restrictions.
- Take a friend or friends to enjoy the experience with you and take lots of photos to enjoy and salivate over after the tour. A food tour is the perfect way to entertain out-of-town guests…you can enjoy their company, feed them well and you won’t have to do any cooking!
3. Think about the weather – if it’s too hot or too cold for you then most likely you won’t enjoy the tour. Take the tour when the weather suits you. Plan ahead for rain or inclement weather. Take a rain slicker and/or an umbrella if needed. Always wear comfortable shoes appropriate for walking.
4. Become familiar with the food tour’s cancellation policy. The policy should be clearly stated on the food tour’s website.
5. Review the food tour’s website and look for words such as “local”, “history” and “culture” and references to the eateries you will visit on the tour which is usually evidence that the food tour company is working closely with the local food experts to give you a unique and enjoyable experience. If you can’t find the information you are looking for on their website, just ask the food tour company…they are happy to answer questions and provide all information needed for you and your guests to have a fabulous tour.
6. On-line reviews about the food tours can be helpful such as Trip Advisor. Expect to taste something different on the tour since the restaurateurs enjoy highlighting their specialties on the tours ~ peanut soup served with homemade spoon bread in a miniature cast iron pan at the Hotel Roanoke in Roanoke, Virginia is just one yummy example.
7.Make sure the walk is not too long or strenuous for you. Also make sure transportation is provided on wine and craft-beer tours or have a designated driver so you can maximize your fun quotient on the tour.
8. Check (on the food tour’s website) to see if gratuities are accepted by the tour guides. At the end of the tour take time to complete an on-line review of the tour.
9. Allow plenty of time for the tour. You don’t want to feel rushed as you enjoy your last spoonful of gelato or morsel of fresh coconut cake!
10. Fall in love with food tours…allow yourself a little extra time in the city you are touring for sight-seeing or shopping. Then plan a return trip to visit as soon as possible!
Please visit Roanoke Food Tours website for food, craft beer and wine tours in Roanoke and Lexington, Virginia:
In addition..Four Food Tour Feel Goods:
- In many cases you will be supporting a local small business that operates the food tours.
- You will also be supporting local restaurants, cafes, eateries and wineries and when you return home you can encourage others to visit the places you enjoyed the most.
- The food tour may provide coupons at the end of the tour so you will be able to enjoy those on a return visit.
4.You may meet someone fascinating such as the lady I met that owns the cheese shop in Lexington, Virginia…the cheeses she sells in her shop are AMAZING!
Meg Hall is the owner of Cheese To You, Fine Artisan and Curated, Name-Protected Cheese. As she explains, her expertise is cheese and she continues to broaden my understanding of cheese through travel and education. I am a member of the American Cheese Society, and regularly attend the Society’s conferences and professional development seminars. I’ve also completed the Master’s Cheese Class coursework at the New York City’s Artisanal Cheese Center.
Please visit my Facebook page: Bubblybee