One of the best things about food is that it can transport you to faraway lands without you having to leave the country or even your home. Joining or starting your own adventure food club can be a great way to experiment with interesting, gourmet and exotic cuisines from around the world and still stay in your own backyard. The only requirements? A sense of adventure and a strong stomach! Here are a few of the nation’s most delicious food clubs and culinary tours. Use them for inspiration for your own, or join them if you can.
Best Adventure Food Clubs & Tours around the Country
New York City Gastronauts
In a city with people from over 190 different countries, it is only fitting that there be an adventure food club that tastes and experiments with native foods of countries from around the world. Once a month the group travels around the five boroughs to authentic global restaurants, sampling the most exotic or, perhaps, most bizarre foods that are everyday cuisine to the natives of featured countries. For example, a recent excursion took the club to the Greek Loukoumi Taverna in Astoria, Queens for poached lamb brain salad. This club is definitely not for the weak of stomach, being more ideal for foodies with an adventurous palate willing to try anything once.
For more information, visit http://www.gastronauts.com.
San Francisco Food Adventure Club
The culinary adventures this San Francisco food club goes on range from the crazy to the common. A recent trip included eating durian (one of the foulest smelling fruits around), and another gave club members a taste of fresh oysters at an oyster farm. This food club focuses on learning where foods come from, picking fresh ingredients, and bringing ingredients home to cook. This group also has sashes with badges for each adventure that foodies partake in (Girl Scout style). So get eating and earn those badges!
If you are interested in more information, check out the club’s Facebook page at http://www.facebook.com/pages/SF-Food-Adventure-Club/115010116747?v=wall.
The Denver Adventurous Eaters Club
The name of this club says it all – the club’s foodies are definitely adventurous eaters. This group eats everything from offal to lutefisk (a common Norwegian fish dish dating back to the Vikings) to tongue – and they love it! The group traverses Denver and dines at restaurants with bizarre foods, sometimes even getting to cook with these foods. No picky eaters are allowed, this club is only for people with adventurous palates who are ready to try anything at least once and maybe even go back for seconds.
This food club has a MeetUp page: http://www.meetup.com/denver-adventurous-eaters-club/.
Philadelphia City Food Tours
Although it is not an adventurous food club per se, this group is a good way to taste and try foods all around Philadelphia (they also have an outpost in NYC). Each week, a group of food lovers explore Philadelphia in one of five tours, ranging from local favorites to artisanal beer and cheese. If you have never had the chance to try a famous Philadelphia soft pretzel or cheese steak then this is a great way to try it all. One tour even takes you to the Reading Terminal which is equivalent to an indoor farmers’ market that often has an out of the ordinary selection of foods. Just be sure to come hungry!
For more information, visit http://www.cityfoodtours.com/philadelphia/philly-food-tours-general-info.cfm.
Miami Culinary Tours
This tour takes place in Miami, a delicious melting pot of Latin cultures. Foodies enjoy all kinds of delicious and sometimes crazy foods. This group goes all over Miami to different markets and restaurants in search of fresh and seasonal authentic dishes. You have the opportunity to learn about the heritage of the food as well as the people and you will get to sink your teeth into a few exotic dishes along the way.
To learn more, check out http://www.miamiculinarytours.com/.