Cape Gazette
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The Business of Eating

This 3-hour tour ends with a smile!

By Bob Yesbek | May 28, 2013
Photo by: Paul Cullen Our tour group at a(MUSE.). Kneeling in front is guide Dave McCormick fromProKitchenGear.com in Greenwood. That’s the Rehoboth Foodie standing in back, hiding behind his logo.

Last weekend I was invited to join the brand-new EatingRehoboth.com food tours. I can’t see myself turning down a taste of 10 restaurants over two days, so I ate, I sipped, I walked … and I discovered.

It all started when former Bad Company bass player Paul Cullen and his wife Bonnie took a trip to Asheville, N.C., a haven for discriminating foodies and those who love (and drink with) them. Just for fun, they joined a walking tour and taste of five local eateries conducted by EatingAsheville.com. They loved it, and in fact went back to two of the five restaurants.

Paul recounted the experience to our very own Rehoboth Foodie. One of the few things that the Foodie guy and I have in common (mercifully!) is that we both get numerous emails asking us where to eat in town. Many vacationers (and even some locals) have no idea where to go for the best taste and value for their dining dollar. So why not spend three hours sampling five of Rehoboth’s best!

In Paris you can take a “just chocolate” or “just croissants” tour. In New York, Seattle, San Francisco and Chicago there’s a tour for almost every kind of food. Rehoboth Beach is a recognized culinary destination - and, until now, no tours!

It seems that both Cullen and Mr. Foodie are easily distracted by noises and shiny stuff, so they invited Realtor Deb Griffin (obsessive organizer and author of The Local Buzz) to join them. I called her to ask what it was like to deal with this bass player-turned-wino and the perpetually chewing foodie. “It’s like herding cats,” she said. “They wander off during our meetings, and I have to guide their hands when they sign things. I’ve already had to break up one slap fight. It was embarrassing.”

But Griffin kept them focused, and it all came to fruition last weekend. Tours run Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays from 1 ‘til 4 p.m. Depending on the day, participants gather at either the Bellmoor or the Hotel Rehoboth lobby for a special pre-tour treat. From there they wind through town with EatingRehoboth.com logo totes filled with goodies like coupons, sample menus, etc. The guides (two of whom are Cullen and Foodie) offer a taste of Rehoboth history as five different eateries whip up small plates and sips of whatever they are most proud of. Last week we enjoyed a delicious cornmeal-encrusted scallop with Thai noodles at Back Porch Café, and one of the best fish tacos I’ve ever had at Zogg’s, and even a salmon and caviar pizza at the delightfully mysterious Red Square. Proprietor Tom Kopunek gave us a short course on little-known facts about vodka. (And I thought I knew all I needed to know!)

Other EatingRehoboth.com tour stops include Victoria’s Restaurant (savory pork belly), Confucius (a mini-buffet with wine, hosted by Danielle Xiong), and the Turkish-flavored Semra’s Mediterranean Grill where Semra herself put out a Middle Eastern-style mezze with Turkish black tea. Bryan Lookup at Stoney Lonen served a plateful of Irish bangers that we washed down with a Guinness martini. Mike Dickinson wowed us at Lupo di Mare with a tasty bite and (several) sips of a bubbly prosecco from Conti de San Bonifacio. We were a bit woozy by the time Sunday’s tour ended at a(MUSE.), but Chef Hari’s small plate with big tastes topped off the event. He even treated us to a delicious dessert.

Other places spotlighted on the EatingRehoboth.com tours include Planet X, Espuma, Mariachi, Hobos, Stingray and Kilwins. If all this makes you curious (or, better yet, hungry), visit EatingRehoboth.com for a tour calendar and to buy tickets. You can also call direct at 800-979-3370 (over 21 only). Tickets are $45 each. EatingRehoboth’s motto is “Eat. Sip. Walk. Discover.” We did all those things and had a perfectly scrumptious time.

Tour guide Paul Cullen filled us in on Boardwalk history just before we filled up at Victoria’s. (Photo by: Bob Yesbek photo)
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