Category Archives: food-and-wine travel

NEW Cycling and Culinary Tour of Friuli, Italy Hosted by Top Chef Brooke Williamson

On Tourissimo’s NEW 7-day Chef Bike Tour of Friuli Venezia Giulia hosted by Chef Brook Williamson and her husband Nick Roberts, guests will cycle from Tarvisio along the Tagliemento River Valley via the Alpe-Adria Bikeway, one of the first long-haul rail-to-trail projects in Europe.

(Turin, Italy) — Friuli Venezia Giulia (often shortened to Friuli) is a northeastern Italian border region tucked between Slovenia and Austria where travelers will find the cultural and culinary imprints of all three countries.

On Tourissimo’s NEW 7-day Chef Bike Tour of Friuli Venezia Giulia hosted by Chef Brooke Williamson and her husband Nick Roberts, guests will cycle from Tarvisio along the Tagliemento River Valley via the Alpe-Adria Bikeway, one of the first long-haul rail-to-trail projects in Europe. The rest of the biking will be on secondary country roads with many interesting and tasty stops. Chef Williamson will play an important role in understanding the local cuisine, which reflects the varied cultures that surround this region.  Prices start at $4,995 per person double. Companions that are non-riders are welcome. E-bikes are available upon request. 

 “We are fond of Friuli not just because it is cycling heaven, but also because it is a must-visit destination for gourmands and wine lovers, and is finally being recognized as such,” said Beppe Salerno, co-founder of Tourissimo. “It is the perfect destination for someone who has been to Italy several times and is looking for something new and different.”

Born and raised in Los Angeles, California, Brooke Williamson has carved out an impressive resumé full of leading roles and professional achievement, such as being the youngest female chef to ever cook at the James Beard House, winning Bravo’s “Top Chef” Season 14 in Charleston, and most recently, being crowned the first winner of Food Network’s “Tournament of Champions” in spring 2020. 

Tour Highlights:

  • Scenic Alpe-Adria Bikeway
  • Wine tasting at a family-run winery that includes the rare and up-and-coming Schioppettino
  • Cividale del Friuli (UNESCO World Heritage Sites), and Venzone (National monument)
  • Stunning cycling along rolling hills covered with vineyards and with the Julian Alps in the backdrop
  • Grado’s golden beaches
  • Palmanova and Aquileia
  • Regional food that combines Mediterranean and Mitteleuropean influences
  • Dinner at a Michelin-starred restaurant with cooking demonstration

The tour takes place June 25-July 1, 2023, $4995 pp.

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Tourissimo are Italy experts and have several decades of combined experience in all facets of the adventure travel industry.

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Tourissimo Unveils NEW Cycling Tour Exploring Prosecco Wine Region of Italy

Veneto, Italy: the landscape vineyards in “Duca Di Dolle” farmstead. Tourissimo, is introducing a NEW 7-day “Grappa and Prosecco” cycling tour of the Conegliano-Valdobbiadene Superiore Prosecco wine making area of Italy.

(Bridgewater, MA) — Tourissimo, a leader in active travel to Italy, is introducing a NEW 7-day “Grappa and Prosecco” cycling tour of the Conegliano-Valdobbiadene Superiore Prosecco wine making area of Italy. Guests will learn about the ancient origins of wine making and how the reputation and qualities of the wine have evolved throughout the centuries. The cycling is just as varied and dramatic as the Vento region’s history, ranging from a challenging climb up Mount Grappa to the hilly terrain of Prosecco.

The tour includes multiple wine tastings, dining at a MICHELIN-starred restaurant, exploring UNESCO World Heritage Sites, overnighting at 4 and 5-star hotels, and cycling one of Italy’s most beautiful regions. Prices start at $4,695 per person double. Venice is only one hour away and makes for a great add-on to the tour.

“For the Prosecco wine lover, this is an absolute dream vacation,” said Tourissimo Co-Founder and Managing Director, Beppe Salerno. “The tour is rich in history, and the scenery is nothing short of spectacular with panoramic vistas and patchwork landscape of steep terraced hills, woodlands, and meadows. The cycling is absolutely amazing, and the food, wine, and accommodations are as good as it gets.” 

The Prosecco area is wedged between mountains and the plain before the Adriatic Sea. It is extremely hilly, with grapes growing at 150 to 1,600 ft above sea level. A route between the towns of Conegliano and Valdobbiadene has been named the Strada del Prosecco (“Prosecco Wine Route”), and it’s the perfect riding playground for wine lovers. 

The landscape is characterized by ‘hogback’ hills, ciglioni – small plots of vines on narrow grassy terraces – forests, small villages and farmland. Since the 17th century, the use of ciglioni has created a particular chequerboard landscape consisting of rows of vines parallel and vertical to the slopes. 

“One goal with this tour, in addition to cycling some of the most beautiful terrain in Italy, is to educate guests about why a Conegliano Valdobbiadene Prosecco Superiore DOCG is a superior product, why it is worth spending more for a quality sparkling wine,” said Salerno. “Because DOCG producers—with the limited growing area, lower yields and extremely high cost of production—can not compete with DOC on price, more and more of them are seeking to explore the particularities of their diverse growing area and long viticultural tradition, and find new ways of expressing them in their wines.”

Tour Highlights:

  • Walking the walls of medieval Cittadella
  • Exploring the hills of Prosecco, a UNESCO World Heritage Site
  • Having coffee in Piazza degli Scacchi in Marostica  
  • Cycling along rolling roads surrounded by vineyards
  • Experiencing a Grappa tasting at a famous grappa produce
  • Soaking up the village of Asolo      
  • Enjoying multiple wine tastings at Prosecco Superiore DOCG producers  
  • Picnicing at mulino della Croda
  • Learning Monte Grappa WWI history and visiting the memorial-museum

What’s Included:

  • Two professional tour guides throughout the program
  • All accommodations in 4-star hotels (one 5-star)
  • All breakfasts, all lunches, and all dinners
  • Wine and beer with meals, coffee, cappuccino, and gelato stops
  • Two wine tastings
  • Logistical support during the tour and luggage transfer
  • Guided tour of Bassano and grappa tasting
  • Shuttle at the beginning and at the end of the tour
  • Bianchi bike rental
  • GPS navigation and maps

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Savor the Best of New Zealand Food & Wine with a New Curated Tour

New Zealand in Depth is introducing a wine-centric travel program which recognizes winners of the Air New Zealand 2016 Wine Awards with a “pairing” of gourmet, local food experiences.

Auckland, New Zealand – New Zealand travel experts New Zealand In Depth announce a wine-centric travel program which recognizes winners of the Air New Zealand 2016 Wine Awards with a “pairing” of gourmet, local food experiences.  The personalized 13-day New Zealand Food and Wine Tour visits New Zealand’s three main wine regions, Hawkes Bay on the North Island with its award-winning Chardonnay and full-bodied Syrah, Cabernet and Merlot; Marlborough on the top of the South Island, acclaimed for Sauvignon Blanc and aromatic whites; and the Central Otago, the world’s most southerly wine-growing region and home to some of the world’s best Pinot Noir.

Accommodations include lodges and inns, selected for their personalized service, outstanding location, and gourmet offerings. Travel is by ferry, plane and car, starting in Auckland on the North Island and ending in Queenstown on the South Island. Additional activities such as hiking, cycling, and gourmet sailing excursions are available. The program is fully customizable to reflect travelers’ activity, wine and dining preferences. To help you decide, New Zealand In Depth offers a quick overview of the country’s wines here. Travel can be arranged from September 2017 to June 2018.

Among the wines to be sampled are many of New Zealand In Depth’s “insider” favorites:  Bordeaux-style Stonyridge Vineyard Larose on Waiheke Island; Endeavour Chardonnay at Clearview Estate Winery in Hawke’s Bay; barrel-aged Sur Lie Sauvignon Blanc from Hans Herzog and Alsace-style Gewurztraminer at Johanneshof Cellars in Marlborough. In Central Otago, oaked Fume Blanc at Amisfield Winery in Arrowtown and single-vineyard Cornish Point Pinot Noir are showcased. Paul Carberry, founder of New Zealand In Depth and a passionate wine lover notes, “There is nothing better than hopping from one winery to another across New Zealand to sample some of the best award-winning vintages. Whether you are an expert, or a passionate enthusiast of good food and wine like me, this new itinerary is a celebration of the best New Zealand has to offer.”

The itinerary visits Auckland, Waiheke Island, Napier and Hawke’s Bay on the North Island with opportunities for beach activities and city sightseeing; and South Island’s Blenheim, Marlborough region, and Queenstown with possibilities for hiking along the Queen Charlotte Track, cycling to the vineyards, adventure sports and boat trips.

For more information, program detail,  and advice on travel to New Zealand in general, visit, call +44 1298 74040 or email [email protected].

Now entering its 14th year, New Zealand In Depth is a team of travel experts who are passionate about creating personalized luxury experiences for clients looking for a distinctive and exclusive vacation in the land of the Kiwis. With nearly 50 years of collective experience, the New Zealand IN Depth team develops programs that reflect a commitment to understanding client needs on a one-on-one basis. The company advocates for responsible tourism in New Zealand and works with people on the ground who genuinely care for their local environment and actively take steps to protect local habitats and native flora and fauna. Personalized programs reflect the long-term relationships held with local providers of activities, superior and unusual accommodations, and off-the-beaten-track experiences, allowing New Zealand In Depth to create itineraries with experiences that are often not available through other tour operators while being mindful of their impact on the environment., +44 1298 74040 Twitter: @NZInDepth   Facebook: NewZealandInDepth.

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Wildland Adventures Celebrates 30 Years with New Trips Geared to Families, Women, Writers, Trekkers

“Patagonia: A Journey of Discovery” is one of Wildland’s first in a series of new Transformational Travel experiences.
“Patagonia: A Journey of Discovery” is one of Wildland’s first in a series of new Transformational Travel experiences.

SEATTLE, WA – Celebrating its 30th anniversary in 2017. Wildland Adventures is introducing 16 new or extensively revised itineraries geared for active women, epicureans, families, emerging writers and adventurous trekkers

“All our Wildland Adventures promise to cultivate connections and possibly transform yourself and your view of the world,” said Kurt Kutay, founder and owner of Wildland Adventures.

2017 New Trips for Families

In Africa: Botswana Family Safari – 8 days, from $5,195 for family of four.  Families are whisked to a private safari camp in Botswana’s Okavango Delta. Wildland’s Young Explorers program led by professional safari guides teaches the whole family the art of bush craft: spotting wildlife, learning animal behavior tracking game on foot. Guests visit local communities to experience daily life, and, among other activities, make jewelry, weave baskets, shoot with slingshots, fish and cook over an open fire. Every day kids “read the morning newspaper” which means looking over tracks in the sand for nighttime visitors.

In Europe: Croatia Active Family Adventure – 9 days, from $4,095 adult/$3,295 under 18. Croatia is accessible and offers great value for the travel dollar. This active itinerary traverses the Julian Alps through forests, following waterfalls and rivers flowing to ancient ports along the Adriatic coast. Families hike, cycle, raft and kayak in national parks, through rural villages and among Roman ruins and ancient fortifications. In local homes and restaurants guests experience traditionally prepared pastas, stews and Adriatic seafood. This adventure begins in the capital city of Zagreb and concludes in Dubrovnik.

In Latin America: Guatemala Family Adventure – 9 days, from $3,695 adults, $2,895 teens, $2,695 child. Wildland families discover everyday subsistence life of indigenous Mayans on small farms and marketplaces around Lake Atitlan. They hike in the Pacaya Volcano, explore the UNESCO World Heritage colonial city of Antigua, and the ancient Mayan city of Tikal in the remote jungles and wildlife reserve of Tikal National Park. An expert bilingual guide leads guests who bike, hike, kayak, explore ruins and connect with Mayans in their homes, villages and fields.

2017 New Trips for Women and Epicureans

In Cuba: Havana and Heartland of Cuba – 7-day women’s departure March 10-16, 2017, from $3,995. A Cuban professional female guide introduces travelers to the lives of Cuban women from their role in the Revolution to the formation of modern-day Cuba. Guests visit with extraordinary women as part of a people-to-people program. “Get ready to laugh, dance, learn and be deeply touched by the women of Cuba a la Wild Style!” Cuba is also among the safest countries in the world for female travelers.

In Latin America: Women’s Active Wine Adventure in Chile & Argentina – April 1-10, 2017, from $4,995. Adventurous women will explore vineyards and valleys of Chile and Argentina on horseback and bicycle, and walk through culturally vibrant back streets of Santiago, Valparaiso and Buenos Aires. Lively female guides introduce South America’s epicurean highlights while the group sips perfectly blended Malbecs, experiments with unique ingredients at a regional cooking class and meets vendors at local markets.

In Europe: Women’s Southern Italy Epicurean Adventure – May 22-31, 2017, from $6,695. This active exploration of Puglia blends sunshine, charming landscapes, delectable cuisine and wines with active women’s zest for the good life. Puglia’s rustic charm is reflected in the locals’ welcoming personalities and communal dining, simple and flavorful local fare that has stood the test of time and a rich cultural history reflecting, among others, Byzantium and the Normans.  Menhirs (pre-history stones), cave churches and medieval castles keep it wild along with hiking, shopping, wine tasting, cycling and preparing classic dishes with master chefs. Antonello Losito, since 2007 one of Pugli’s premier guides, shares his passion for the food, landscape, and culture of Southern Italy with guests.

2017 New Trip for Writers

In Asia: Vietnam: Travel Writing with Dave Fox – Mar.6-17, 2017, from $3,775. Guests who want to delve deep into Vietnamese culture and advance their travel writing prowess are invited to explore Vietnam with best-selling author and award-winning travel writer Dave Fox. In a collaborative small group, budding travel writers practice mindfulness and how to see anew employing a heightened sense of awareness using all their senses traveling south to north by boat, bike and foot among the clamor of cities and the peaceful rice paddies and villages. The trip culminates with a two-night cruise through Halong Bay as participants develop new sources of self-expression and personal story-telling that chronicles a sense of place and people, grabbing the imaginations and capturing the hearts of their readers. Dave has been a Public Radio news anchor, a tour guide and an international cruise ship lecturer.

New for 2017 – Transformational Adventures

In Latin America: Patagonia: A Journey of Discovery – 7 days, from $3,100 is one of Wildland’s first in a series of new Transformational Travel experiences. Embark on a guided journey of personal exploration and discovery through one of the most spectacular and inspirational places in the world. Head deep into Torres del Paine National Park for three days of extensive hiking into the Paine Massif. Along the way, Michael Bennett, Ed.D. of Muddy Shoe Adventures, facilitates small group sharing using the power of nature and adventure to foster a deeper sense of discovery of the on this journey of personal exploration. Michael will use the trip’s many adventures as catalysts for casual yet inspirational discussions for participants to reflect, share and learn from what they are experiencing with the goal of integrating it into one’s day-to-day life.

In Asia: Thailand: Discovering the Land of Smiles – 9 Days from $2,450. Thailand is one of the most diverse, exotic, and exhilarating countries on earth. A trip there among chaotic cities, vibrant markets, temples steeped in spiritual richness, and verdant tropical nature full of wildlife, guarantee that you’ll be enlivened and enriched and an opportunity to see yourself anew. Along the way, Michael Bennett, Ed.D., of Muddy Shoe Adventures, facilitates sharing among travelers of each day’s adventures as inspiration in a collaborative and supportive small group recognizing each traveler’s present rite of passage, and for some to develop a personal action plan for kick-starting the next chapter of their lives.

For more information on these and all of Wildland Adventures’ worldwide offerings, availability and reservations call 1-800-345-4453 or email [email protected]. Visit

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Guernsey International Food Festival Set for Sept 23-Oct 2 Celebrates Island’s Gastronomic Heritage


Following the success of 2015’s inaugural Guernsey International Food Festival, the foodie’s paradise is back this September with more exciting culinary indulgences. This festival, taking place from Sept. 23 – Oct. 2, 2016, is a celebration of the island’s rich local produce and gastronomic heritage while paying homage to influences from the international stage.

Jean-Christophe Novelli is the celebrity ambassador, leading events across the island from farmers’ markets to cook-offs, culinary master classes, chef residencies and wine tastings. Two of Guernsey’s finest hotels, The Duke of Richmond Hotel and The Old Government House Hotel & Spa, Guernsey’s only five-star property, will be participating by showcasing the island’s bounty of gourmet food and varied hospitality.

Here are a few highlights of what visitors and guests can expect:

Curry Leaf Café Masterclass Lunch 

Saturday, September 24 and Sunday, September 25 from 12:00 p.m. – 2:00 p.m.

Venue: The Old Government House Hotel & Spa

Tickets: $53 including welcome drink and glass of wine with lunch

Head Chef Kanthi Kiran Thamma of Brighton’s Curry Leaf Café hosts a master class lunch in The Old Government House’s Curry Room featuring classic dishes from Kerala and Southern India. While preparing the dishes, Chef Kanthi will answer general questions about Indian cuisine and describe how to re-create similar entrées at home. A three-course lunch serves as the finale, complete with a carefully selected wine pairing.

British Game Gala Dinner featuring Ridgeview Wine Estate and Blackdown Artisan Spirits

Saturday, September  24 at 7:00 p.m.

Venue: The Old Government House Hotel & Spa

Tickets: $92 including dinner and matched wines

Channel Islands Chef of the Year 2016, Simon McKenzie of The Old Government House Hotel & Spa, prepares a gala dinner featuring the best of seasonal game meats. Each dish is perfectly paired with an award-winning sparkling English wine from the Ridgeview Estate, craft spirits from Blackdown Artisan Spirits (both hailing from Sussex), and fine wine from local wine merchant Bucktrouts.

Food Lab Dinner

Tuesday, September 27 at 7:00 p.m.

Venue: The Duke of Richmond Hotel

Tickets: $53 for five courses ($79 including matched wines)

Five producers, five chefs, five dishes. The festival’s most creative dining experience, randomly matching kitchen and production talent for a never-to-be-repeated gourmet meal at The Duke of Richmond.

International Chef Exchange: St. Lucia comes to Guernsey

Thursday, September 29 at 7:00 p.m.

Venue: The Old Government House Hotel & Spa

Tickets: $73 for three courses including matched wines in advance from The Old Government House Hotel

The Cliff at Cap Restaurant is one of the most highly sought-after restaurants in St. Lucia, recently hailed by the New York Times as one of the best restaurants on the island. In one of the Caribbean’s most dramatic settings overlooking the surging Caribbean Sea, the restaurant is under the direction of Executive Chef Craig Jones. His nouveau French West Indian menu elegantly presents the bounty of St. Lucia’s fresh local produce and seafood readily sourced on this tropical island. Chef Craig takes over the kitchens of Chef Simon at The Old Government House Hotel for one night only, treating guests to a mouth-watering three-course dinner with accompanying wine, including some of his Caribbean favorites such as poached lobster ravioli, pan-fried kobe with caramelized plantain and an island-spiced doughnut.

This Chef Exchange is part of a reciprocal agreement where UK chefs swapping kitchens with international chefs across the globe. Old Government House’s Chef Simon will be flying over to St. Lucia for a Taste of Guernsey weekend, taking place on the Caribbean Island in February 2017.

The Guernsey International Food Festival is preceded by Guernsey Cocktail Week from September 16 – 24, 2016. Various venues across the island, including The Old Government House Hotel and The Duke of Richmond, will produce special signature cocktails based entirely on local produce.

The Old Government House Hotel & Spa is located in the heart of St. Peter Port and offers the finest in five-star luxury. Five minutes’ walk from the picturesque quayside, this hotel is perfectly placed to explore the island and provides guests with a ‘home away from home’ boasting fine dining facilities, the stylish Crown Club , an outdoor heated swimming pool and luxurious Spa and fitness center.

Just up the road is The Duke of Richmond Hotel which offers unparalleled service in peaceful surroundings. Overlooking a quiet park, this elegant property is home to the relaxing Leopard Bar and Restaurant where guests can sit back and enjoy a range of cocktails and expertly prepared dishes, a chic monochrome Residents’ Lounge and an outdoor heated swimming pool complete with sun loungers perfect for glorious Guernsey summer days.

Room rates at The Old Government House Hotel & Spa during the festival start at $260 per room, per night, including full English breakfast, based on two people sharing. Room rates at The Duke of Richmond Hotel during the festival start at $199 per room, per night, including full English breakfast, based on two people sharing.

For details and reservations, contact:

The Old Government House Hotel & Spa at +44 1481 724921 or email [email protected].  Visit online at

The Duke of Richmond Hotel at +44 1481 726221 or email [email protected].  Visit online at


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Macedonia Experience Paves Way for Foodies to Discover Macedonia’s Culinary Heritage

Macedonia Experience ( introduces “Culinary Experience,” a 10 day/9 night sampler with hands-on demonstrations of traditional Macedonian cuisine.
Macedonia Experience ( introduces “Culinary Experience,” a 10 day/9 night sampler with hands-on demonstrations of traditional Macedonian cuisine.

SKOPJE, REPUBLIC OF MACEDONIA – Sitting due north of Greece and near Turkey is Macedonia, a yet-to-be-discovered country just beginning to pop up on the culinary radar thanks to cheese, wine and wild game.

Macedonia Experience ( introduces “Culinary Experience,” a 10 day/9 night sampler with hands-on demonstrations of traditional Macedonian cuisine combining Balkan and Mediterranean characteristics of fresh fruits and veggies, mountain-grown herbs and local wines. Toss in Turkish tastes that prevailed during long centuries of Ottoman rule, a few wild game dishes and gustatory senses will be overjoyed.

This pepper-spiked adventure includes accommodations (guests select the class of hotel they desire); all transfers, tours and activities; ingredients for the preparation of dishes; guidance and tutorials for preparation of the dishes in a traditional setting; and the services of a tour guide. This tour is offered year-round for a minimum of two people or a maximum of 12. An average tour cost for guests booking medium-priced hotels throughout the journey starts at €2000 per person, double based on four participants.

Guests transfer from Skopje Airport to their hotel in the historic town of Skopje, inhabited since 4000 BC. Here the culinary games begin. Lunch is in a restaurant built in a traditional style with live Macedonian music surrounded by the mystery of the Old Bazaar where wines and spirits (mainly rakija, a typical Macedonian spirit made by distillation of fermented fruits) and cheese are served in bars and eateries. The next day a pre-breakfast visit to a pazar (typical market) introduces foods and spices before a traditional breakfast of pastry with chorba (a minestrone-type soup). Guests learn how to prepare makalo (gravy), pot cheese and proja (preparation of cornmeal into a type of bread). Later comes a wine and cheese tasting before dinner at a winery near Skopje.

Days 3, 4 and 5 bring guests to Mavrovo National Park to sample wild game specialties, an exploration of Ohrid, a UNESCO World Heritage site, and a market tour to purchase ingredients to prepare selsko meso (Macedonian and Balkan pork and mushroom dish) and pastrmajlija (Macedonian bread pie made from dough and meat). Embroideries, musical instruments and objects made of clay are also available in the markets. A visit to a handmade paper workshop (one of only seven in the world where the paper is made in the original Chinese way from the 2nd century BC.) shows how this paper was used on Gutenberg’s original printing press from the 15th century. The equipment and clothing here are 100% authentic.

Days 6 and 7 continue with tours and tastings in Bitola and Krusevo, distinguished as the highest town in the Balkans. Guests learn how to make lokum (traditional sweets) before sampling region-wide famous Krusevo sausage and kebab. Next come Krusevo pies filled with cheese, leeks, cabbage and spinach. An enologist meets the tour in the Tikvesh wine region before visiting the ancient ruins of Stobi and passing on to Berovo, a small town near the Maleševo Mountains where nature combines with the history of the Ottoman Empire. Guests prepare their own dinner here. At Berovo Lake guests mingle with locals who share their customs through handicrafts, musical instruments, songs and dances preserved for centuries. Guests dine in a traditional sheepfold on ingredients sourced locally before departing the next day.

For more information and reservations contact the North America representative office: 866-748-8867, or by email: [email protected].


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Context Travel Offers Gastronomic Experience in Vienna

Old World traditions in Vienna © 2014 Karen Rubin/
Old World traditions in Vienna © 2014 Karen Rubin/

Vienna– Context, organizer of critically acclaimed walking tours, expands its program in Vienna, with Tasting Tradition: An Appetite for Austria, a new gastronomic experience that uncovers Austria through a multicourse annotated meal.

The influence of the Austro-Hungarian Empire continues to have an impact on local cultures, including contemporary Austrian cuisine. At the same time, regionality is heavily reflected in the country’s culinary traditions, and continues to shape its cuisine today. This three-hour annotated meal tells the rich story of Austria past, present and future, offering a menu of foods from the nine federal states, each of which have their own unique terroir and cuisine. Led by a scholar of food anthropology, the experience takes place in an exceptional restaurant in the vibrant capital.

Tasting Tradition: An Appetite for Austria comprises five courses with optional wine pairings. Choices include goulash, different types of dumpling, the world-famous Wiener Schnitzel (veal), as well as pork roast, pan-fried carp, pasta, poppy-seed specialties, and seasonal dishes based on apricots and asparagus, chestnuts, chanterelle, game and pumpkin. The experience also offers the opportunity to sample some cold cuts, regional cheeses, and of course drinks and dessert – including the legendary Kaiserschmarrn.

The dinner sets the scene for discussions about Austria’s eating habits, Vienna’s burgeoning streetfood scene, issues around produce procurement and availability, as well as food trends, from Asian fusion and fifties Americana to organic and vegan to burgers and cupcakes. Breaking bread together, participants learn about how tradition and modernity have collided to create an exciting and truly multicultural food culture.

“We developed this meal as a new and unique way for visitors to picture Austria throughout history, by sampling its culinary heritage and geographic variety,” says food anthropologist Katerina Nussdorfer, who co-designed the tour.  “It’s also a chance to find out firsthand just how royal Kaiserschmarren really is, and experience the untranslatable Germanic feeling of Gemütlichkeit – the art of cosy joy in the company of good people and good food.”

Tasting Tradition: An Appetite for Austria lasts 3.5 hours (including 30 minutes transport time) and is available Tuesday to Saturday at 6 pm (excluding December 22, 2014 to January 2, 2015). Group walks cost €75 per person. Private tours cost €330 per party. Tasting fee is €65 per adult and €55 per child up to age 16. As with all Context walking seminars, groups are led by a credentialed expert and limited to six (6) people maximum.

Founded by National Geographic writer Paul Bennett and designer Lani Bevacqua, Context Travel is a network of English-speaking scholars and professionals, including art historians, writers, architects and gastronomes, who organize and lead walking seminars in twenty-five (25) world cities, including: Florence, Rome, Venice, Naples, Paris, London, Edinburgh, Madrid, Barcelona, Berlin, New York, Philadelphia, Boston, Washington, D.C., Istanbul, Athens, Beijing, Shanghai, Vienna, Prague, Budapest, Tokyo, Kyoto, Amsterdam and Buenos Aires. A certified B Corporation, Context Travel was named one of the fastest growing American companies in 2011 by Inc Magazine. Travel + Leisure has called Context one of the top European tour companies for its innovative approach to travel and the depth of its programs. To learn more about Context, visit its website


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Explorateur Journeys Launches Gastronomy/Cycling Fusion Experience through Uruguay

Explorateur Journeys has launched Chef On Wheels, a trip infused with special experiences of Uruguayan gastronomy, interactions with local chefs, instruction on traditional dishes blended with an active cycling adventure that gets travelers up close and personal with quaint villages and a traditional slice of life.

The journey begins with insider access to a special winery, where guests can bike trough the charming town of Carmelo, tasting along the way and stopping for a home cooked Uruguayan asado. They’ll enjoy dinner one evening with a celebrated local chef who will prepare a “secret menu” for them based on the “La Cuisine Secret” invitation-only nomadic dining concept that’s become popular with local foodies.

As travelers move on through the country, they’ll shop in a fresh farmers market with a local chef and try their hands at local secret recipes that the chefs will dispel in a gorgeous kitchen, paired with a string of exclusive cocktails.

Back in Montevideo, time will be spent cycling along the beach and into small towns, with access to special art exhibitions along the way and more home cooking in a cozy chef’s kitchen.

The journey rounds out with a cycling and canoeing adventure at the Garzon lagoon, where a boat crossing brings guests to a hidden “Lagoon Shack”, where a local chef prepares lunch and provides an opportunity to mix and mingle with village children who attend special cooking classes designed to help educate the local community.

For more information, visit, email [email protected], @theexplorateur,
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Learn to Cook Indonesian Style at Four Seasons Bali’s Newly Opened Jimbaran Bay Cooking Academy

Four Seasons Bali is the only resort on the island to feature its own stand-alone cooking school.
Four Seasons Bali is the only resort on the island to feature its own stand-alone cooking school.

Delicious local food is one of Bali’s most famous attractions and now visitors can take home the authentic flavors of Indonesian cuisine, thanks to a new Jimbaran Bay Cooking Academy which has opened at the Four Seasons Bali at Jimbaran Bay.

“Four Seasons is the only resort on the island to feature its own stand-alone cooking school. We wanted to go beyond offering casual lessons in the kitchen to providing a full professional-quality training facility. Our classes are designed for novice and experienced cooks alike – creating a focused learning environment for a maximum of 10 students per session,” says Michael Branham, General Manager.

“Food is a great way to create a deep personal connection and also enhance people’s cultural appreciation of Bali and Indonesia. Many of the recipes are based on old family traditions. Now our guests can take these recipes home and share these authentic dishes with their own family and friends.”

Set in its own building, the Jimbaran Bay Cooking Academy features a charming stone-paved courtyard and herb garden at its entrance. Enormous glass doors lead into the air-conditioned kitchen, equipped with gleaming state-of-the-art appliances and a large, kidney-shaped, black granite preparation unit with induction hot plates. Students can sample their creations at the communal dining table or outdoors in the shaded courtyard. All graduates receive an official certificate of achievement, as well as copies of the recipes in a beautiful hand-drawn booklet.

The Jimbaran Bay Cooking Academy provides a hands-on opportunity to learn about the secret techniques and distinctive ingredients of Indonesian cuisine. Recipes are sourced from the resort’s team of Four Seasons chefs who come from various regions across Indonesia, including Bali, Sulawesi and Sumatra. All classes are taught in English only.

Classes are led by Chef Anak Agung Kristya Yudha, a Balinese native who has been preparing delicious meals for Four Seasons guests for more than 20 years. Caring and passionate with a charming sense of humor, Kristya enjoys engaging with students and sharing his knowledge of Indonesian cuisine and culture.

In each half-day session, students learn to prepare a full five-course meal according to traditional menus representing Bali, Java, Nusa Tenggara, Sulawesi and Sumatra. Highlight dishes include: “Sate rembiga” (traditional beef satay skewer with spicy sauce) from the Nusa Tenggara region; “Bebek betutu”(roasted duck with wrapped in banana leaf) from Bali; and a dessert of “Es doger” (young coconut, tapioca pearls and cassava with sweet milk) from Java.

As part of the day, students can visit the Jimbaran Fish Market – about 10 minutes from Four Seasons – to see how locals shop for the freshest seafood. Students can also pick indigenous ingredients from the academy’s herb and spice garden that grows Thai lemon basil, tamarind, pandan leaf, ginger and garlic.

Taking a class at the Cooking Academy is ideal as an interactive family activity. Once a week, the school offers a kids’ pastry class, focusing on Indonesian desserts.

After an optional market tour at 8 a.m., students gather in the kitchen at 9:30 a.m. to create an authentic Indonesian meal. There are six regional menus (including two different Bali menus), rotating on a daily basis, seven days per week. Special pricing is available when booking multiple sessions, starting at IDR 900,000++ per class. Classes are open to a maximum of 10 participants. Non-resort guests are welcome to attend with advance reservation.

Four Seasons Resort Bali at Jimbaran Bay sits along Bali’s southern coast in 35 acres of oceanfront gardens. Accommodations include 147 villas and nine grand-scale residence villas that can accommodate up to 10 in palatial 11,000 – 24,000-square-foot spaces with 24-hour butler service. Memorable dining options include four restaurants and lounges featuring Indonesian, Thai and global cuisine, in-villa and in-residence dining and specialty meals accompanied by traditional Balinese dance. Cooking classes offer novice to expert instruction in Balinese, Indonesian and Asian dishes as well as the culinary secrets of pastry. The oceanfront Spa features an array of treatments that demonstrate the curative powers of water, including Balinese ayurvedic wellness and healing rituals, along with massages and yoga sessions offered in thatched open-air oceanside gazebos.

For more details on schedules and booking at the Jimbaran Bay Cooking Academy, phone (62 361) 701010, or email [email protected],

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