Marana Gastronomy Tours Season 2

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 Discover Marana, the tourism and marketing program of the Town of Marana, is pleased to announce the second year of its gastronomy tour program. “The Marana Gastronomy Tour” and “A Taste of the Wild: The Marana Wild Foods Gastronomy Tour” explore different aspects of ancient foodways at archaeology sites and wild food flavors through tastings. Featuring ancient foodways experts, archaeologists, master foragers, master brewers, and a Master of French cuisine (Maître Cuisinier de France). 

 “A Taste of the Wild” tours include tastings of Bean Tree Farm prepared wild foods and Catalina Brewing Company and Button Brew House craft beer made with wild foods, and a wild foods walkabout with experts Carolyn Niethammer and Martha Burgess.

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“The Marana Gastronomy Tour” includes guided walks at two archaeology sites by Dr. Suzy Fish (later in the season) and Allen Denoyer of Archaeology Southwest, tastings at Catalina Brewing Company, and a small plates tasting at The Ritz-Carlton, Dove Mountain. The tours are limited to 12-13 people. 

Reservations with Gray Line Arizona are $99 (“A Taste of the Wild”) and $109 (“Marana Gastronomy Tour”) per person. 

“The UNESCO City of Gastronomy designation was given to Tucson because the areas surrounding the Santa Cruz River have the earliest agriculture found in the United States,” said Laura Cortelyou, Tourism and Marketing Manager for the Town of Marana. “These are the only tours where you can experience these ancient cultures at ancient archaeology sites and taste ancient flavors in craft beer and classical French fusion cuisine.” 

Marana is home to wild foods educators, chefs, and craft brewers that responsibly harvest from the 450 edible plants in the Sonoran Desert; as well as farm-to-table restaurant suppliers, BKW Farms that grows White Sonora wheat used in local craft beer and artisanal baking by Barrio Bread, and a number of beekeepers that produce mesquite and wildflower honey. 

According to Jonathan Mabry, Ph.D., President of the Tucson City of Gastronomy nonprofit organization, “The Marana Gastronomy Tour program brings to life this region’s unique ancient history, foodways, and flavors. These are reasons for its 2016 UNESCO Creative City designation, as well as the area’s many food and beverage festivals, food economy, access to biodiverse foods, and more. Sonoran Desert foods have drawn and sustained peoples here continually for more than 10,000 years, creating a culturally layered cuisine.” 

Gray Line Tours Tucson is the tour provider and a third-generation family-owned business that has provided premier tours in, and from, Tucson for more than 100 years. 

“The Marana Gastronomy Tour” and “A Taste of the Wild: The Marana Wild Foods Gastronomy Tour” are both approved by UNESCO Creative Cities Network member, Tucson City of Gastronomy, the first City of Gastronomy in the U.S.

Scheduled Tour Dates Marana Gastronomy Tour: Thursdays; October 11, November 8, January 24, February 21, and March 21; 12:30 pm - 6:00 pm A Taste of the Wild: The Marana Wild Foods Gastronomy Tour: Sundays; October 21, November 18, January 6, February 3, March 3, April 7; 9:30 am – 1:30 pm.

Marana Gastronomy Tour Reservations 

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