When I initially moved to Kingston and started this blog my Toronto friends were introduced to our wonderful culinary scene through my Instagram feed. They would send me messages, “I had no idea Kingston had such incredible food?” We sure do. We have so many amazing restaurants, in fact, that I didn’t know which one to pick when they came to visit last month. I thought, “Oysters and cocktails at Le Chien Noir? Tapas at Tango? Pizza at Atomica? Burger night at Bella?” As many of you know. The list goes on and on. Enter, Kingston Food Tours.
Kingston Food Tours kicked off last summer and it’s the perfect opportunity to see our wonderful food scene through my tourist friends’ eyes. Tickets are $60 and cover the entire three hour jaunt through Kingston’s top notch food scene. The concept aligns perfectly with my appreciation for eating fresh local ingredients. So I book the tour for my three friends, my husband and myself.
I get a text from our tour guide Dan about 25 minutes before we are to meet at the Kingston Tourism Centre across from City Hall. After a quick introduction to our day, our group of twelve is handed a pamphlet (stuffed with coupons to destinations on the tour and a few other local hot spots!).
We kick off the tour with margaritas and fish tacos at Dianne’s followed by delicious treats in the kitchen at Pan Chancho, hop over to Atomica for wood oven pizza and Olivea for braised short rib with gnocchi, a little tapas at Tango Nuevo is next and stops to General Brock’s Commissary, Kingston Olive Oil Company and The Common Market (Slickers Ice Cream!) sweeten the deal.
Obviously the food is amazing, but another highlight for me is the knowledge and trivia that come with each stop. Dan is filled with Kingston facts and he weaves them into the day perfectly.
This tour captures our city’s food culture in the most wonderful way. Our restaurants’ awesome ability to use the freshest ingredients, harness the innovative ideas of our talented, young chefs and celebrate local ingredients provided by our amazing farmers.
By the end of the tour a woman from Toronto looks at me and says so sincerely, “How lucky are you to live in a town like this?” Very.