Winter Vacation Tips: Food Tour – Key West Food Tours

I can’t believe the holiday season is over. The crazy thing about the wonderful high of the holiday season, is the crash that comes just after the new year.

Many people, including myself, use this time of year to set goals, readjust priorities, and travel! I’m not a travel expert, but I do know that the U.S. winter season is a great time to travel near or south of the equator since it’s much warmer there.

We recently took a 4 day Royal Caribbean cruise that stopped in Key West and the Bahamas. We’d been to the Bahamas before but were excited to finally visit Key West. We’ve found that one of the best ways to learn about a new city and experience the best food is by taking a local food tour.

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We decided on KEY WEST FOOD TOURS and we were not disappointed! I wanted to give you a quick snapshot of our tour in hopes of encouraging you to try out a food tour on your next vacation. This might give you some ideas for the next time you’re in Key west or it might give you an idea for something new to try if you like traveling and if you like enjoying local food.

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The first place we visited was El Siboney a Cuban spot located at 900 Catherine St. This quaint restaurant was a great place to start our tour. We were served bread, beans, rice, and some of the best pork I’ve ever had. Our guide discussed the history of the restaurant and shared some of the stories behind this traditional cuisine.

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Our second stop was to Bad Boy Burrito located at 1128 Simonton St. Food Network celebrity chef Guy Fieri stopped here for an episode of Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives and tried out their Cayo Hueso Fish Tacos. We had the opportunity to do the same and I’ll admit it was a very delicious taco! My only warning is that it’s very spicy, so be prepared with a tongue cooling beverage.

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Next, we walked over to the Speakeasy Inn Rum Bar and they served the tour participants a local rum runner cocktail. This was a tiny restaurant but if you’re into rum, this would be a good place to stop. There were some fun tidbits of history here and I was pleasantly surprised to learn how this stop shared so much Key West history!

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Our next stop was to Camille’s Restaurant. I loved this stop because it was my first time trying conch! We had Fried Conch fritters and I’m happy to say, I’m obsessed! I’ve heard horror stories about conch fritters but I think I can safely say this place does a great job making a fritter that’s not to doughy and that is bursting with flavor.

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Blue Heaven Restaurant and bar was such a neat stop. I felt like I was walking into a secret garden. The Key West island is a little bit of paradise, but this outdoor/backyard restaurant is its own piece of paradise. Here we were served Traditional Key lime pie and although I’m a huge fan of the Publix version, it’s got nothing on Blue Heaven’s version.

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Our last stop was to Key West Distilling. Here we were given a tour of the distillery and those who were interested, were allowed to taste their finished products!

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We truly enjoyed our Key West Food tour and recommend it to anyone who plans to travel to Key West soon. We opted for the Key West Food Tour over the one provided by our cruise line and it was definitely worth it! If you’re interested, visit www.keywestfoodtours.com for more information and to book!

 

 

Falling in Love at Taco Tuesday + Restaurant Review: Takorea

My wonderful husband and I have a very long tradition of what we like to call “Taco Tuesday”. Let’s back track a little bit. If you know William and I personally you know we have a very interesting history. We started dating in high school and through some of college. I broke up with him… We got back together… He then broke up with me… and about a year and a half later (and after we graduated from college) we decided to give our relationship another try. This last time around we stumbled upon our favorite tradition, Taco Tuesday.

At the inception of Taco Tuesday, I was working in Kennesaw and William was working in Smyrna… I was living in Smyrna and William was living in Kennesaw (so complicated). We started meeting up at a conveniently located Los Reyes, a local Mexican Restaurant, after work on Tuesdays and it just stuck. There’s nothing like sitting down at a cheap restaurant filling up on chips and salsa to really bring two people together. There’s no expectations or high standards to set with Mexican food… It’s just good food, and good conversation.

For most, Taco Tuesday just means eating Mexican on a Tuesday which isn’t really a big deal, but for us, Taco Tuesday is how we fell in love (cue sappy sigh and tears). But in all honestly, it’s true. It’s how he and I knew that we were supposed to be together. I typically showed up kind of tired from a long day of work and William always showed up in his Target red and khaki… and it was perfect. Taco tuesday is what we look forward to. Some couples look forward to that weekend jog, others look forward to a night out on the town… We look forward to a booth, great eats, and lots of laughter.

Taco Tuesday has such a special place in my heart. It was actually after a Taco Tuesday date that William proposed to me. We’ve promised each other that the spirit of Taco Tuesday is a must no matter what we face in our lives and our marriage and for the past 2 years we’ve kept the tradition alive. Taco Tuesday is where we share our hearts with each other, talk about current events, and sometimes its where we settle some of our disagreements. You can’t be unhappy sitting across the table from your husband while stuffing your face with a queso covered chimichanga… it’s just not possible.

Currently, both my husband and I have conflicts on Tuesdays nights and our Taco Tuesday has morphed into our international inspired date night. We eat Mexican as often as possible but sometimes we like to switch it up. This week, we went out on a Wednesday evening and tried a local restaurant, Takorea.

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Restaurant: Takorea, Dunwoody

Location: 4474 Chamblee Dunwoody Rd, Dunwoody GA 30338

Overall Rating: 9

Price Range: $$ ($11 – $30)

Website: http://www.mytakorea.com/

Click HERE to view the Menu

I’ve been to Takorea’s main location before in Midtown Atlanta so this time we decided to try out their smaller location in Dunwoody! Their food is unique because it’s a morph of Mexican and Korean flavors. It’s easy to get to and has such a great atmosphere. Menu items range from $2.80 – $10.50. There is an extensive drink menu as well.

We arrived at the restaurant around 7:30 p.m. on Wednesday and were greeted enthusiastically. The employee at the font counter told us all of the day’s specials and helped us understand everything on the menu. table

The Tacos

The tacos are great here! I’ve had a few different kind at the midtown location. William ordered one of the specials – It was a sweet and sour chicken taco. It was nice and crunchy, and tasted great!

The Fries

Takorea’s Sesame French Fries are some of the best fries out there. They are crunchy, have a perfect sesame flavor and are served with a side of chipotle ketchup (heavenly)! They served them in a Chinese takeout box so they get extra points for the cuteness factor.

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The Bowls

Both William and I both ordered Bibim-Bop’s which are Takorea’s take on the Bibimbap. I ordered mine with the Kimchi Fried rice and beef. William ordered his with beef as well but opted for the plain rice. These bowls are HUGE and super filling. We both had enough to take home and eat for lunch the next day. The beef is tender and delicious and I love the flavor of the Kimchi fried rice.

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RATINGS

ATMOSPHERE: 9  – The atmosphere for the restaurant was great, especially on a spring or summer day. There’s a large patio that is an extension of the restaurant. There are a few TVs and quite a few fans. The music was old school rock and was playing at a perfect level that did not encroach on our conversation. We went during the height of pollen season and I was impressed with how clean they were able to keep the outdoor area.service

Taste: 9 – The food is delicious. My only warning is that this might not be the place for you if you can’t handle unique flavors. Our food arrived very quickly and our server was extremely nice! service

Service: 9 – Great service. We were greeted by a friendly employee. It was our first time at this location so she helped us maneuver the menu since it is different than the midtown location. Our food came out exactly as we ordered and they were helpful with clearing our extra plates from our table.service

Overall: 9. We really enjoyed the restaurant and love that we can enjoy Takorea’s delicious food without having to tackle the parking and traffic issues at the midtown location. We will be back for sure!service