About Foods of NY Tours
The Original Food Tasting and Cultural Walking Tour Business in New York City!
THE STORY OF ONE HUNGRY MAN
It really all began with one hungry guy, roaming around NYC's Greenwich Village looking for good eats, hidden gardens and cobblestone streets. When Todd Lefkovic realized he wasn't the only one looking for an alternative to the grandiosity of Times Square in favor of smaller streets, smaller restaurants and Mom & Pop owned specialty food shops, he decided to share his love for all things downtown and all things food-related with the world.
Todd's Story: My original journey began in 1977 by sampling the perfect slice of thin crust New York style pizza, Turkish donor kebab (a very interesting culinary treat for me in 1977), and, quite possibly, the best fresh filled cannoli I've ever eaten. That day ended in a tiny cafe listening to an elderly man playing the sitar. This was the beginning of Foods of New York Tours, even though I didn't realize it at the time. This experience and many others, inspired me to create the finest food tasting and cultural walking tours that are now given in the most historic and beautiful areas of NYC.
Foods of New York was established in 1999 to help visitors and local residents find the ultimate food and cultural experience "off the beaten path." Once the idea was solidified, the research began by simply enjoying the delicious foods and diverse musical venues that existed within Greenwich Village.
WHO WE ARE TODAY
When we began in 1999...
Our goal was to introduce locals and visitors to the ultimate, off-the-beaten-path,
food and cultural experiences. And that's just what we do.
Since 1999 we have been giving Food Tasting and Cultural Walking Tours through New York City's most delicious and historic neighborhoods. We make it our mission to continually seek out and share food and cultural finds with you. Yup, it's a hard job... but somebody's got to do it. We are passionate about food and deeply dedicated to NYC (Our Big Apple) and we are experts at making you feel at home in each neighborhood we explore. We are committed to keeping your belly satisfied and your brain full with fun facts and finds. The staff at Foods of New York Tours is proud to share our knowledge and discoveries with you. Let us take you on a three hour journey that introduces you to our favorite neighborhoods, foods, and venues, while opening up a whole new world that is waiting to be explored. Dig in!
OUR GROWTH & OUR VALUES
We like to keep things small. We enjoy small, hidden (sometimes subterranean!) shops and restaurants that are frequented by the locals in each of the neighborhoods we tour. And we like to keep the groups small too - usually no larger that 16 people to ensure that YOU have a personal experience. We don't use microphones or megaphones, no big buses or bullhorns, but rather we speak to each tour attendee and make eye contact and a personal connection while taking you on our talking and tasting journey. For group size, 16 people works best - and it also makes slicing up a pizza pie much easier! Over the last 12 years we've encountered many repeat and return customers, and we've had many past tour attendees asking us (and begging us) to create a food tour in their favorite neighborhoods - and so we did. Over the years we took on the hard job of eating and walking... and eating and walking some more. When we felt comfortable and ready to share our food finds with the world, we did. We now offer FIVE Food Tasting & Cultural Walking Tours and we're very proud of each. Try them all!
OUR TOUR GUIDES
Our tour guides are well trained and well fed! We employ a team of culinary enthusiasts, cultural experts, and comedians who are extremely proud to share their knowledge and discoveries with you. Our tour guides work exclusively for Foods of New York Tours and many have been working with us for over 10 years. We consider ourselves one big happy and hungry family. On a monthly basis we dine together at the establishments on our tours, thus living and breathing (and eating) our work and ultimately, supporting the quaint little Mom & Pop food shops and the unique restaurants that make NYC so special. We engage in regular re-training where we educate ourselves on the current events and hidden histories of each neighborhood. More than that, we live and breathe NYC food & culture and we love sharing it with you.
One of the elements that makes our Food Tasting & Cultural Tours so great and a cut above the rest is that we work very closely and have personal, real, and long-lasting relationships with each and every shop and restaurant on our tours. Our business is based on respect for these establishments and their staff, respect for the neighborhoods we tour in and respect and appreciation for NYC as a whole. Without these relationships we would not have succeeded over these many years. Since we seek out the 'best of the best' in each neighborhood, it is then our pleasure to support these local businesses and mostly, it is our joy to share them with you. As a result of these strong relationships, our tours become a seamless and pleasurable experience where each Foods of New York Tour Guide and each Tour Group is welcomed (like family) into each establishment to share in their history, their story and of course, their food! And even on our days off, you will (with a doubt) find us all eating and enjoying the wonderful foods from the wonderful establishments that our tours highlight. Peek into Murray's Cheese Shop, Amy's Bread Shop, Rafetto's Pasta, the Peking Duck House or the Little Cupcake Bakeshop and you will surely find us noshing and nibbling the very foods that we share with our tour groups.
Research began in 1997 and the tour was offered in 1999
Research began in 2001 and the tour was offered in 2003
Research began in 2005 and the tour was offered in 2006
Research began in 2007 and the tour was offered in 2008
Research began in 2009 and the tour was offered in 2011
If there is anything else you'd like to know or discover about Foods of New York Tours, we'd be happy to share our work with you. You can contact us here: firstname.lastname@example.org or here: 917-408-9539 or check out our Press Page.