Food enthusiasts got their fill while on the Ethnic Eats Food Tour as they tasted the unique flavors that make up the Bella Vista neighborhood.
Run by City Food Tours, the tour took hungry attendees on an adventure of Asian and Mexican cuisine. Aside from filling their plates, they learned a thing or two about the history and culture of the neighborhood on the way.
Asian and Mexican culture is thriving in the Bella Vista neighborhood, which borders the Italian Market. Their presence in the area has grown significantly over the past two decades. According to the Philadelphia Research Initiative, between 1990 and 2010, the Asian population grew from 1, 516 to 3,984 and the Hispanic population grew from 1,152 to 3,691.
For a $40 ticket, tour-goers were able to experience the ethnic fusion of the neighborhood through stops at different Asian and Mexican Restaurants, a tour of an Asian supermarket and an inside look of a Buddhist Temple.
Both locals and tourists enjoyed their experience.
“It was really a treat to come up here from the South and have this delicious authentic Thai food,” said Mary Jane Zimmerman, who was visiting from North Carolina.
Fishtown resident Elvis Suarez explained, “I’ve always liked trying new foods and I had no idea about all these awesome restaurants so close to me.”
Some of the authentic dishes that were offered included Vietnamese roasted pork banh Mi, Thai curry-marinated tofu satay and Veracruz-style carne asada tacos.
Local restaurant and shop owners encouraged tour-goers to return and invite their friends.