Article by Chris Johns, originally published in the Atmosphere magazine. Read the latest edition here.
Whatever adventurous foodies are hungry for, these delicious excursions are sure to hit the spot!
We, hungry travellers, are no longer content to just seek out the best local restaurant or market. We want to get out with the locals to see where their food comes from. And if that means traipsing through a forest, diving under the sea or getting up close and personal with a local farm animal, then so be it.
Fishing for Dinner in Cozumel
Forget farm-to-table; take your dinner from ocean to spear in Cozumel. Dive into the Caribbean Sea with your guide from Spearfishing Today to try your luck at catching a powerful mahi mahi, speedy wahoo or plump amberjack.
Then take your fish to the 115-year-old El Palomar restaurant, where, on a breezy patio overlooking the very same waters you just pulled your catch from, the chefs will turn it into the freshest catch of the day possible.
How: Take the plunge with Spearfishing Today and adopt its sea-to-table lifestyle.
Truffle Hunting in Istria
Set off into the Motovun Forest of Istria with the Karlić family and their dogs on the hunt for one of the world’s most highly coveted delicacies: truffles. Canines Kika, Betty, Candy and Lela will sniff out lovely black truffles from April to August and rare white truffles from September to March. You may have to pry a truffle from Lela’s mouth once in a while.
Back at their farm, tuck into cheese, sausages and traditional doughnuts, all laden with truffles.
How: Join third-generation truffle hunters, the Karlić family, and their dogs in search of these underground treasures.
Living the Good Life in Ikaria
The islanders who live on Ikaria, less than an hour flight from Athens, are some of the longest- lived people in the world. Chef and host of the TV series My Greek Table Diane Kochilas shows you why in her week-long immersions into Ikarian life.
Forage for your own medicinal herbs, share a glass, or two, of local wine, taste wild honey with traditional beekeepers. Go on and even milk the neighbour’s goat, and make cheese from what you extract. The secret to longevity is worth it.
How: Taste the Ikarian lifestyle with Diane Kochilas.
Foraging for Flavours in Stratford
Trek through the sprawling woodlands just outside Stratford, Ont., with naturalist Peter Blush, and forage for wild leeks and morels in the spring; wild asparagus and cattail shoots in the summer; and a bounty of mushrooms in the autumn. You’ll learn to tell a fall oyster from a velvet foot (as if you didn’t know!), and how to best harvest them.
At the end of your adventure, Peter will cook the day’s haul into flavour-packed dishes you can recreate at home.
How: Discover why even Oprah Winfrey hails Peter Blush and his foraging tours, Puck’s Plenty.
Feeling adventurous? Fly with Air Transat to visit one of those destinations.