You’ve been active all day – now comes the reward…. Perhaps some Spanish sangria and tapas– crispy shrimp tortillas, garlicky patatas bravas, tuna with red pepper, and nibbles of marcona almonds. Or maybe a juicy Argentine beefsteak, with piquant chimichurri sauce and glass of plummy Malbec. In Vietnam, it might be a steaming bowl of phô, brimming with noodles and aromatic herbs. Dessert? Maybe handmade Sicilian cannoli, stuffed with velvety sweet ricotta and chocolate drizzle. The candles are lit, the wine uncorked, and your friends await. Come join our table, and celebrate another great day.
One of the great joys of travel is discovering the regional cuisine. After all, in Puglia or Poland, Sonoma or Seville, Down East or down South, every culture is largely defined by how it cultivates and cooks the natural bounties of its fields, sea, and streams. So food plays an important role in our daily exploration. Typically, we introduce you to the region’s culinary tradition with a welcome reception that features local appetizers—perhaps some Spanish sherry and manchego cheese, Dutch cocoa and pastries, or some cheesy fried zucchini flowers, washed down with a sassicaia Super Tuscan
wine. That’s just for starters….
Most meals are included
All our vacations include daily breakfast, many lunches and most dinners. This adds to the value of your VBT trip in more ways than one. We vary the venues as well as the menus, so along with your new taste sensations you’ll enjoy a sensational ambiance. Be it a hearty Irish farmhouse breakfast, or a candlelit dinner in a French chateau, you’ll enjoy distinctive fare in memorable settings. There won’t be any skimpy continental breakfasts with VBT. Active days require fuel, so we always include a hearty morning meal (that may be served buffet-style), and choices always include some protein and hot fresh coffee or tea to kick start your day. We generally enjoy lunch en route. It might be that you amble into a tiny Irish village and grab lunch on your own at the neighborhood pub. Or enjoy a wonderful included midday feast at a Bordeaux vineyard, after touring the cellars. We take our included dinners together, and they’re often served family style, with everyone passing platters as we recount the day’s discoveries. We intentionally leave a few meals free so you can try local restaurants on your own. Your Trip Leader will have great recommendations.
Travel globally, eat locally!
Things always taste better after you’ve worked up an appetite in the great outdoors. But they’ll taste especially good with VBT, because we only dine at establishments that serve fresh, local ingredients, artfully prepared. Many of them participate in the international Slow Food movement, which promotes ecologically sound agricultural practices and seeks to preserve traditional styles of cooking. Much of our cuisine is organic and frequently, it’s been cultivated right on the premises. In Puglia, for instance, our masseria boasts its own olive grove and press. Count on freshness, and variety (including vegetarian alternatives for those who prefer them).
Our signature picnics
Your VBT Trip leaders will surprise you now and then with one of our famous picnics. We’re not just talking about boxed lunches, but delicious samplers of local delicacies, often just hand-picked by your Trip Leaders at the local market. Perhaps you’ll savor delicately spiced wursts, bacon-flecked kartoffelsalade, potato salad, apfelstrudel, and a local riesling, enjoyed beneath the ramparts of a Mosel Valley castle. Who needs a table when you’ve got the best seat in the house?
A toast to local wines and spirits
Russian River Valley. Burgundy. The Douro. Chianti. Mendoza. The Mosel. We bring you to some of the world’s most celebrated wine growing regions, and invite you to sample the local vintages during included winery tours and private tastings, as well as during select meals. There are other occasions that warrant a toast, too—perhaps a visit to a whiskey distillery, a biergarten stop, or a Polish vodka tasting. And with such wonderful VBT companions to raise your spirits, you’ll find many occasions to raise your glass.
Join our special culinary departures