by Marjorie Dau
In a world obsessed with big plate sizes there’s a trend that seems destined to stay. I’m sure you’ve heard of small plates or Tapas. In Europe, namely Spain, where Tapas comes from, the plates are even smaller than the American version….but at least it’s a start.
There the meal is an event itself. With friends, a sort of moveable meal where you enjoy the time visiting….nibbling a bit from one plate and then perhaps moving on to the next location and doing it again. By the time you’re done for the evening you have the total of one normal meal over a long period of time.
A slice of cheese and salami, a variety of crudo vegetables, a hot panni shared, a few bites of a sumptuous pasta dish and finally a bite of decadent dessert. Each of the plates are about the size of a butter dish and all are shared with the group of friends.
The Spanish are by no means the only ones. We recall a first trip to an alpine country where we experienced fondue. Presented with one small plate of: a couple of veggies, a tiny piece of meat, a few cubes of bread and some fruit; all on one plate. The night progressed as we shared the fondue pot cooking our bites and enjoying the company. The first thought was this must be the appetizer. Actually, this was the entire meal. And surprisingly by the end of the night we were full!
In Britain, we were invited to supper at some new friend’s home one evening. After visiting awhile we were taken in to the dining room while a plate of fruit and cheese was brought out. Thinking this was a European starter we shared the selection of wonderful cheeses and variety of fruit. Before we knew it the time had flown and we were leaving.
On the way home, we commented that was an odd meal. Later we learned that the main meal of the day was at mid-day and was provided by the employer. The evening meal was simple plates of a variety of items like we had and always shared.
Sounds a bit like what About Town Taste does on our walking adventures…. A sort of movable meal where you enjoy the time visiting….nibbling a bit from one plate and then moving on to the next location and doing it again. By time you’re done you have the total of one normal meal over a period of time. We even add the enjoyment of some great street art and ‘taste’ other things too while weaving it all together with historic stories of the neighborhood.
Since Fresno has world-class art of many styles, great architecture and food in obscure locations, About Town Taste, a curious and fun adventure company, guides you to it one-step-at-a-time with its walking adventures. Developed after two years research worldwide the taste adventures launched their first public season in 2010. The vision is to be the first choice of locals and visiting travelers sharing a love of the area and connecting you to it. About Town Taste treads into four local neighborhoods; one each weekend. So, put on your walking shoes and sense of adventure and connect with the city in a FRESH way.
Like wine tasting, About Town Taste adventures guide you through the process of renewing your senses with art, history, architecture, and food. Many cities worldwide have similar walking tours to explore and connect in a different way. Fresno had nothing like it. We prefer you see historic buildings from inside not just the sidewalk and many local historic buildings have opened their doors to us for exclusive interior access to make the city’s rich heritage come alive.
The best feature, which sets About Town Taste apart from anyone else, is that adventures uniquely feature locally owned eateries with tastings along the way.…. All included in the cost. What exactly do we see/do/taste? Well, we don’t eat and tell!
You can expect to experience local neighborhoods with their unique art, food, people and history. Some recent ‘tastes’:
• Personal visits with local artists
• Fragrant jasmine with smoky oolong, and sweet black tea flavored with lychee fruits
• Exclusive interior access into some historic buildings
• Gourmet hot dogs
• Up close interaction with world-class art
• Juicy gourmet burgers of angus beef with seasonal ingredients, of roast red peppers
• Engaging visits with locals hearing why they do what they do
• Authentic English tea & scones
• Fascinating tales of our historic past
Sound like fun? Well, why not try it out February 23 as we step out in the hip Tower neighborhood on our Taste the Tower adventure. We include multiple stops for small plates at local eateries. Just $49pp. Reservations are required online, in advance.
So, get a few friends together and make it a fun day! Learn more on the About Town Taste website.