Taste History Culinary Tours in Boynton Beach and Delray Beach will have you feeling like a local as you explore the two cities through both their culinary and art scene.
We love taking tours with Taste History Culinary Tours because they always offer more than the typical food tour; they also include stops at art galleries and other significant cultural areas in the city. This combination leaves you feeling like you really got to know the true essence of the city you visited.
This was actually our third tour with Taste History (our first tour was through West Palm Beach and our second was through Lake Worth and Lantana). We were excited to get to know this area of South Florida because, although we worked in Delray Beach, we had never taken the time to explore it.
As always, we were greeted by Lori’s big and welcoming smile. Lori Durante is the mastermind behind Taste History Culinary Tours and over the last few years she has created these amazing tours that combine local history, emerging art, and food from family owned eateries.
The meeting place for all of the tours is always the Boynton Beach Mall outside of the Macy’s East Entrance. After catching up with Lori for a bit and introducing ourselves to others on the tour, we took our seats in our private air conditioned shuttle and headed off to our first stop. Along the way, Lori gave us a brief history of the area, including information on local Native American tribes and the first European settlers.
Our first stop was The Campo Produce in Boynton Beach. This organic market was opened by husband and wife team Christian & Angie Argel and their shop sells smoothies, sandwiches, fruits, and vegetables. Everything they make is all natural and during our visit we tried their Cantaloupe Smoothie which was very light and refreshing.
Did you ever think you’d be eating deliciousness at a library? Well it turns out that on the north side of the Boynton Beach Library is the Sailfish Cafe, a small restaurant managed by the Secret Garden, a culinary business development program. Everything on the menu in the cafe is made locally and from scratch by program members. We were given samples of their Tabbouleh salad with pita chips, shrimp and grits, and a coconut macaroon. Our favorite was the shrimp and grits! The flavors were incredible and it had a nice kick to it. And we’ll admit, that although we don’t normally care for coconut anything, we did go back for a second coconut macaroon. So that’s saying something!
On our way to our next stop we walked along Ocean avenue, which is known as Avenue of the Arts in Downtown Boynton Beach. This strip is home to many interesting pieces of art, including some cool kinetic art. In case you were wondering, kinetic art a form of art that depends on movement for its effect (remember the movie Twister?). It wasn’t too windy on that day, but we still got to see some of the pieces moving.
The Amanda James Gallery was our next stop. Inside, we found bright and colorful artwork as well as clothing and home decor. All of the pieces were handmade by either Amanda Johnson or James Knill, a husband and wife duo with a love for coastal living. Because everything is made by them, each piece is unique. They also do a lot of custom work!
Next on the tour was Troy’s Barbeque. This smokey and savory restaurant first opened in 1996 and has been delighting BBQ fans ever since. Troy has perfected his art and he is now joined by his sons, who are helping him expand the business by bottling up Troy’s signature sauce. While we were there we sampled ribs, candied yam, and mac & cheese. Everything was amazing, especially the ribs! Troy doesn’t use a dry rub; instead he bastes the ribs every 15 to 20 minutes. It’s a long and slow process, but well worth it. The ribs were tender, juicy, and had a nice smokey flavor.
Our next stop was the Jamerican Cafe. We loved their authentic Jamaican cuisine and the fact that absolutely nothing is pre-made. All of their dishes are made on the spot and from scratch; they call it “fire to the plate.” We sampled their red peas chicken cream soup, their jerk hot dip, and their curry chicken. It was all amazing, but we’d go back for the jerk hot dip alone! Imagine the bold flavors of jerk chicken, but with added cheesy goodness. And it was served with home-made plantain chips. Yum!
As we were getting ready to wind down, Bamboo Fire Cafe was the prefect stop in Delray Beach. Inside, the decor was all about chilled and relaxed vibes. Here, they serve a variety of Caribbean dishes. They also have a lot of vegan and gluten-free options. We sampled the goat cheese mac & cheese, jerk meatballs, and guava cheesecake. We also had some of their homemade calypso lemonade, which is the only lemonade we’ve ever liked. It was SO good! But don’t bother asking for the ingredients – it’s a secret recipe!
Our last art stop was a visit to the Bay Gates Project in the Boynton Beach Arts District. We’re big fans of street art and murals, so this stop was one of our favorites. This outdoor exhibition project was started in 2011 and has been ongoing ever since. We loved the pieces we saw but our favorite was the mural of Van Gogh missing his left ear. The red paint splatter really gave it a little something extra lol!
The final stop of our Taste History tour was at Palermo’s Bakery. Wow, the aroma that hits you as you walk in through the doors is heavenly! Palermo’s specializes in Italian desserts, and we were more than willing to try a few of their delicious goodies! This family-run bakery has been baking up fresh pastries, cookies, and cakes since their family lived in Sicily back in the 1920’s. They established their current location in Boynton in 1961 and are considered the #1 neighborhood Italian bakery in the entire Palm Beach County area. We can certainly see why!
So after ending the tour on that sweet note, we headed back to the Boynton Beach Mall. Along the way, Lori reminded us of all the places we’d visited. When we arrived back at the mall, we said our goodbye’s to everyone in the group and thanked Lori for a fun filled afternoon.
If you’d like to learn more about Taste History Culinary Tours or about the other food tours they offer, feel free to check out Taste History’s website. You can also find them on Facebook and Twitter. And when you take your tour, remember to tell them Buddy sent you! 😉
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**A big thank you to Lori and Taste History Culinary Tours. Although we were guests of Taste History, as always, all opinions are our own.**