On our latest visit to Miami, we were invited to go on a tour with Miami Culinary Tours and it was one of the best walking food tours we have been on – read along to see where we went and what we ate!
Food tours have seriously taken off in the last five years, with them now being the second thing I search after restaurants in a new city. It’s a quick and easy way to cover a lot of territory in just a couple of hours, guided by a knowledgeable tour guide normally from the area you’re touring.
That’s why when our our recent trip to Miami, I discovered Miami Culinary Tours and contacted them to work together on taking one of their tours. Disclaimer: my husband and I were guests of Miami Culinary Tours, but my opinion is 100% my own – if I didn’t love it, I wouldn’t be writing about it.
Our tour was the South Beach Food & Art Deco Tour, a tour packed with delicious treats from the heart of Miami as well as engaging history tidbits and architectural insights as we walked along Art Deco history. Our tour kicked off at Taverna Bolivar Restaurant, where we had a beef and potato empanada and a ceviche made with passion fruit. Two completely different items, the empanada was rich and savory, while the ceviche was fresh and bright. Colombian was the speciality of this restaurant so this seemed like the perfect way to start.
Up next, picadillo with taro root chips at the award-wining Larios on The Beach, Gloria Stefan’s fabulous spot right on Ocean Drive. It’s a very antically inspired restaurant, but with Cuban comfort food dishes and a variety of dishes with a Latin twist. The picadillo (ground beef cooked down with raisins, olives, and spices) was served with a side of mojo, a garlic oil sauce that’s addictive and not low in calories, but who cares when it’s that good!?
Oh these empanadas. These empanadas were sooooo delicious, I think I’ve even dreamt about them. Haitian Chicken Empanadas with chimicchuri at The Tides South Beach was one of the best stops of the night – the empanadas were originally made just for the tour but became so popular they are now on the menu. The creamy chicken filling was so tasty, I stole my husband’s as well!
That’s our tour guide Lisa, who was so knowledgeable about the area and had a fun fact about almost every corner we passed until we reached Blocks Pizza Deli, where we had a Vegetarian Panozzo, an Italian sandwich made with a 300 year old sourdough recipe that the deli has been keeping alive.
The sandwich was an unexpected surprise because by then I was feeling a bit full, but the vegetables inside made it a light option to end the night on before dessert. The pizza by the slice looked incredible amazing and we came back the next afternoon for a slice for lunch – it was that good!
Last, but certainly not least, there’s dessert. At the ward-wining Gelateria Milani, where we had an almost roulette-like ice cream experience. Obviously I had the Hazeltnu gelato and could have easily died happily. The Gelateria makes every batch by hand, in small batches to ensure quality, from fresh ingredients and not mixes like most shops do. This was the perfect sweet note to end an incredible food tour!
If you’re in Miami, make sure to check out Miami Culinary Tours. I’m not getting paid to say this – it really was an incredible experience and I hope to be back and take one of their other tours.
“People don’t take trips, trips take people.” – John Steinbeck