What is a food tour?

Posted on August 30, 2018 | By Karen Anderson

Savvy travel, food travellers, food tourism trends, Calgary Food Tours, Alberta Food Tours Inc.

A food tour is a great way to get to know a place, its people and their way of life – especially what foods they enjoy. In this post we’ll not only look at what is a food tour but also the who, what, when, where and why of our company.

The Who

We’re Alberta Food Tours and we’ve been in business since 2006. Our president, Karen Anderson, is an award-winning cookbook author and co-author of Food Artisans of Alberta- Your Trail Guide to the Best of Our Locally Crafted Fare. We have over 20 members on our team and operate in four cities in our province. We have 90 plus partners and together we support about 150 farms. When you support us, we pay all our partners and team members and we all create a great food culture. That’s our why, but what about your why?

The Why

We know you have a lot of choices when you are planning a trip. You can get a map or app and DIY your way through a vacation in Alberta. But, you might go home without ever meeting an Albertan. You can take advantage of a hop on, hop off bus services to get the lay of the land. That’s a great way to visit venues but you still won’t mix much with locals. A walking history or architecture tour helps when you want to see notable architecture and hear key historical facts but we think that’s still only scratching the surface.

 

guests enjoying a tasting

Whether you are travelling across town or from around the globe, a food tour will help you eat a variety of authentically local foods, enjoy meeting other travellers and locals and explore the area with a local guide who is also a tourism ambassador. Our guides are ready with insider tips to enhance the rest of your time in our corner of the world. We think the taste memories you’ll make with us will leave an indelible imprint.

The Where

At Alberta Food Tours, we offer tours in Banff, Canmore, Calgary and Edmonton.

Summer at the Fairmont Banff Springs Hotel

Banff

Our Banff tour is in an amazing castle – The Fairmont Banff Springs Hotel. It’s a national historic site in a UNESCO world heritage area. There are 150 chefs preparing 90 per cent of the luxurious food offerings from scratch in-house. Can you imagine cooking three meals a day for the 1100 staff, 747 guest rooms and all the weddings, conferences and special events? It adds up to a million meals each year and we share all the TLC that goes into that and what makes the Banff Springs one of Canada’s greatest culinary institutes. Of course, we taste the signature foods and drinks and have private access to the premium dining venues in the castle. You will be royalty for a day on this food tour.

Guests learning about the local art scene in Canmore

Canmore

Our Canmore tour helps you escape the line-ups in this bustling tourist town to discover it’s culture through the lens of local guides who have backdoor access and who definitely know all the best eats and drinks in town. From it’s start as a mining and rail town, to it’s bohemian arts culture history to its current evolution as an active living and Olympic training mecca, you’ll leave this tour feeling like a definite insider.

 

Rouge Restaurant

Calgary

Our Calgary tours explore one farmers’ market and three off the eaten track neighbourhoods where the locals hang out. From luxurious fine dining at Rouge Restaurant in Inglewood and a walking history tour that brings the maverick spirit of Calgary alive to hip, cool and ethnically diverse 17 Avenue SW to cozy Kensington’s delicious fare and the Calgary Farmers’ Market we offer food tours several times a week. Forget the nickname Cowtown, this is Canada’s Chowtown.

 

Guests on a food tour in Old Strathcona, Edmonton with Alberta Food Tours

Edmonton

Did I mention that we tour in all kinds of weather? In Edmonton, we spend summers eating downtown’s delights and on Sundays from spring to fall we enjoy brunching and munching our way through the city’s most historic district –  Old Strathcona. Our guides our local journalists, cookbook authors, teachers, actors and chefs and wow! are they passionate about this city.

The How and the When

All you have to do is go to our website, choose a tour, book your date and we’ll send you directions on where to meet your guide and group with your ticket confirmation. Most tours are three hours. The prices range from $65 to $175 per person plus 5 percent GST and a small ticketing fee of $3 to $4.

Once you’ve paid, your spot is guaranteed and you can relax knowing that on the day of the tour, everything is included. That’s right, you’ll enjoy sit-down, knife and fork tastings and we’ll flow seamlessly from each spot because the tax, tips and tabs are already looked after. Tips to your tour guide are completely at your discretion.

The What 

As for the food, we carefully select our partners so you are sampling the best of our province whether it’s upscale dining, ethnically diverse offerings, farmers’ market fresh bites or a casual evening visiting local’s favourite pubs and specialty shops.

Charcuterie board preparation at the Fairmont Banff Springs Hotel

The food is mouth-watering and memorable. Alberta’s cuisine is an emerging global phenomenon. We also include beverage pairings at most of stops.

Alberta Food Tours guide sharing cheese

Our guides are passionate about food and share stories of the history, art, architecture and character of the areas we tour.

A group enjoying a custom food tour on Banff Avenue in Banff with Alberta Food Tours

You get to mingle with the other guests and meet some of Alberta’s finest food artisans. There’s always a little gift to thank you for coming out and an invitation to stay in touch. Our goal is to help you eat, enjoy and explore Alberta so join us early in your travels. We are sure a food tour will enrich your whole experience of our province. Come #EatAlbertaFirst with us.

Learn more or buy tickets on this website – albertafoodtours.ca 

Karen Anderson

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