Taste Frederick Food Tours

Monday, November 19, 2012
My friend Sarah Withers started her very own Taste Frederick Food Tour.  I was overwhelmed with excitement when she offered a groupon for a 2 for 1 deal.  Wade and I went on the 3 hour tour the last Saturday in October and it was amazing! We cannot stop ranting about how much fun we have and all that we learned.  Even if you have been to every restaurant/ shop that the tour stops at, it is still 100% worth going on this tour!  

I was a tad sad when Sarah told me that she would not be leading the food tour on our tour date and that her father would be our guide.  Wade and I were the first to show up for the tour and Sarah’s Dad, Duane showed up shortly after.  

We all hit it off and talked about our love for Frederick and how awesome it was that Sarah was following her dreams with this currently successful food tour and food blog.

The other 8 members of our tour were all family, showed up and we were on our way inside Brewer’s Alley for our first tasting.
{Entering Brewer’s Alley}
{Beautiful Day}
{Listening to the history of Brewer’s Alley}
At Brewer’s  We were given a glass of the wonderful 1634 Ale Beer.  Which was very good.  A very fresh out of the brick oven Margherita Pizza followed. So yummy! Duane talked about the history of Brewer’s Alley and the story behind the 1634 Ale. There was an extra slice and beer left over, which Wade and I of course volunteered to take care of.
{1634 Ale}
{Yum- Wade and I shared the extra one}
{Sarah’s Dad diving out the fresh slices of pizza}
{Fresh Margherita Pizza}


{Pretty stained glass windows}
{My Love}
When we were finished we all met up outside.  We headed to Firestone’s Market on Market.  Once again it was such a pretty day, and I found it the perfect time to shoot some scenery shots.
{I spy a spire!}
{Pretty}
{Walking down Market Street}
Shortly after we entered we were handed a half of a freshly pressed pastrami with red onion, swiss cheese and cider sandwich. This was good to DIE for and was Wade and my favorite food item on the tour.  

Next we wondered around and looked at all the cool stuff The Market offers, {cheese, soup mixes, etc} before heading down Market Street.

{Next Stop: Firestone’s Market on Market}
{Wade enjoying his pastrami sandwich}
{Glorious Cheeses}
{The most amazing sandwich ever!}
{Browsing the shelves}
{The Angel in the Window}
Our next stop was Griff’s! Now I admit, I have gone to Griff’s many many times in my life, but I had never had anything to eat there.  I was excited.  We were given a very large bacon wrapped scallop, homemade hushpuppy and a crab & mac ball.  They were each very good, but my favorite was the bacon wrapped scallop. So very fresh and delicious.
{Onward to Griff’s}
{Bacon wrapped scallop, Hush puppy  & Crab mac ball}
{Another Angel Painting by William Cochran}
On our way to Carroll Creek we stopped in front of Canal and learned about the guy on the sign.  This was Smiling Charlie. He was a famous character icon after prohibition and was used to lift the spirits of the public and get people back in the pubs which had been closed for so long.
{Smiling Charlie outside of Canal}
{Walking along Carroll Creek}
{Admiring the creek}
Our group walked along Carroll Creek for awhile before stopping at the newly done Community Bridge. Confession, I had always thought Frederick was cheap and painted stones on the bridge versus spending the money on stones.  But no, there is much more to the story! William Cochran, {who painted the other famous outdoor paintings in Downtown Frederick} also painted this bridge.  It took him 4 hours PER STONE to paint.  That is crazy! Also, you know all those objects painted amongst the stones? The artist asked different communities throughout the world to send one symbol of what community meant to them.  Awesome! There are many other cool things about this bridge, but I will let you all learn on your own when you go on the tour.
{“The Hidden Door” Painting by William Cochran}
{The Arch Angel painting on the community bridge}
{The colors of the trees were beautiful}
{Pretty light pole on the bridge}
Our next stop was The Wine Kitchen along Carroll Creek.  Wade and I had dined here last June for our 5 year Anniversary and love it. I was super excited to try it again!

We all were given some wonderful Fried Green Tomatoes with a Srirachia Aioli sauce.  I had had these last time we were here, but they are so good, it didn’t matter.  

Next we were given a Mission Fig Salad containing: Mascarpone Mousse, Serrano Ham, Figs, Hazelnuts and Local Honey.
{Next up: The Wine Kitchen}
{Yummy Fried Green Tomatoes}
{Yummy Fig and Ham Salad}
{Inside The Wine Kitchen}
After the Wine Kitchen it was time for more history talking and lots of walking to work off our thus far, hearty lunch.  We walked around near the library, passed the Weinberg Center & the courthouse, and around near city hall. We learned tons of stuff and heard many stories.  My favorite was about the Tyler’s Spite House.  In summary, the city of Frederick wanted to extend record street.  Mr. Tyler did not like this because it meant that the extended busy road would have been literally right next to his house! He searched law books and found a way to stop it.  Current law stated that if there was construction taking place in the path of the road, the road could no be made.  So, the night before the construction on the road was to begin, Mr. Tyler gathered his workers and they poured concrete for a huge extension on his house.  And so the name “The Tyler’s Spite House” came to be; because he built this extension only out of spite to the city of Frederick.
{Walking near the Public Library}
{Pretty chandelier outside the Weinberg Center} 
{The Tyler’s-Spite House}
{Tyler’s Spite House}
{Freshly fallen leaves and pretty trees}
{Wonderful Fall Day}
{Clustered Spires}
{City Hall}
We managed to make it back to Market Street and turned into the North Market Pop Shop.  I had seen this store before but had never had the chance to wonder in.  We walked in and there was a huge wall filled with different types of old sodas.  We took a few minutes to check out the different flavors before Duane gathered us for some samples.  He chose a strawberry soda and a Lineade soda for our tasting.  These we so good.  I am definitely going back for the holidays to buy some stocking stuffers.
{The North Market Pop Shop}
{So Many Selections}
{Our guide pouring our samples}
{Lineade!}
On our way to our next place; we took a little pit stop in front of Volt.  Duane told us one of my favorite stories of the day.  Many moons ago, a father left a fortune to his 3 daughters and they built the Volt building as their home.  The girls liked to sunbath in the side patio area in the courtyard; only the neighbors in the building next door would spy on them.  CREEPY! So the sisters built a brick wall on the very edge of the property to literally cover the neighbors windows so they could not peep! If you take a good look at the wall next to Volt you can see where the wall built by the sisters ends and the neighbors’ brick wall begins!
{Pretty Mums outside of Volt}
{The Volt “Wall”}
Our next stop on the tour was the L.O.V.E. {Lebherz Oil & Vinegar Emporium} I was so happy to see what this place was all about.  I had tried to go into L.O.V.E many times but always had Cha Cha {my doggie} with me and wasn’t able.  
{Lebherz Oil and Vinegar Emporium}
When we entered, Duane pulled us aside to explain how this olive and vinegar shop came to be.  In a nut shell, one of the Lebherz daughters had studied/lived abroad in Spain and was sad to not be able to find comparable oils and vinegars when returning to the U.S.  And so, L.O.V.E was opened!

Duane also explained about how we taste the oils and vinegars; by pouring the contents in the little white cups provide.  Now this method is the method of an oil/vinegar connoisseur because after trying this method with 4 different olive oils, I felt a little queazy and had to switch to using bread to taste; i’m such an amateur.  

All of these flavored oils and vinegars would be amazing on any salad; forget grocery store salad dressings!

There were soooo many different types of oils to choose from! My favorites of the oils I tried were:  Wild Mushroom and Sage, Chipotle Infused and the Blood Orange!

Next I moved onto the Balsamic Vinegars.  These were a lot easier to try without bread in my opinion.  My favorite Dark Balsamics included: Lavender, Pomegranate, Dark Chocolate, Cinnamon Pear and Blackberry Ginger.

Of the Whites: Honey Ginger and Grapefruit* {My all time fav!}
{So many choices!}
Our last stop was Zoe’s Chocolate Company.  I have never tried their stuff either so I was pumped!
Duane picked us out our samples: Baklava chocolate and a liquid caramel chocolate. THEY WERE TO DIE FOR.  My mom and I are both obsessed with Baklava, so I know what I will be putting in her stocking this year. 🙂
{Last stop= Zoe’s Chocolate Co.}
{One of each please!}
{Chocolate Baklava and Liquid Caramel Chocolates!}
I cannot express enough how much we enjoyed this tour, another great event that Frederick has to offer.  The 3 hour tour had just enough food for us not to feel sick from being too full, walking to work off some of the calories and bits of history to impress your friends and family.  Frederick is such a neat place and when you have driven entrepreneurs like Sarah, wonderful things happen. 🙂

To visit the official website and to buy tickets for the Taste Frederick Food Tour Click here. And check out Sarah’s Food Blog here


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