Trails aren’t all about going from point A to point B. When you’re following a trail, it’s about the journey in between.
Food trails chart the course through local cuisine, giving travelers a chance to experience a place through the food that fuels it. We’ve rounded up a few of our favorite food trails that span a lot of territory and a lot of food. You better come hungry!
Prepare yourself for some of the best pies in Brooklyn! — Photo courtesy of iStock / masa.k
New York is known for its pizza and some of the best pies come from Brooklyn. If you’re hungry for pizza and want to experience some of the best that Brooklyn has to offer, hop on the G Train.
This subway between Greenpoint and Park Slope not only takes you on a journey through Brooklyn, but its stops are conveniently located near popular pizzerias. So load up your Metro Card and indulge in every kind of slice ranging from Neapolitan-style to St. Louis-inspired.
Beans and cornbread are a wintertime favorite in Appalachia — Photo courtesy of Candace Nelson
The Appalachian Trail has become synonymous with some of the best hiking that the eastern United States has to offer. But what many travelers don’t realize is that the 205,000-square-mile area is also home to Appalachian cuisine, a “diverse set of foods rooted in place and created from hearty ingredients,” as 10Best contributor Candace Nelson explains.
The dishes you’ll find throughout this region tell a story of the resourceful lifestyle of those who call Appalachia home.
Ohio’s Donut Trail
Holtman’s cereal donuts are a local favorite — Photo courtesy of Jason Bohrer
Prepare for the sugar rush of a lifetime. Butler County, Ohio is home to the country’s first donut trail, an 80-mile route that takes you to some of the state’s best donut shops.
The stops feature locally-owned bakeries and if you visit all of them, you get a T-shirt. It takes about 4.5 hours to complete, so pace yourself, because these donuts are delicious and you’re going to want to fill up on the first stop!
Kentucky Beer Cheese Trail
Beer cheese from Hall’s on the River, the place where beer cheese was invented — Photo courtesy of Garin Pirnia
Kentucky is known for bourbon, but the state also produces some incredible beer (and there’s a trail for that, too, called the Kentucky Brewgrass Beer Trail). But did you know that the state is also the birthplace to beer cheese?
In Winchester-Clark County, travelers can sample beer cheese from 11 different eateries. Though beer cheese recipes are relatively similar, artisan cheesemakers can achieve a variety of distinct flavors determined by which cheese and beer styles they use. And once you’ve tried all 11, you can get a T-shirt that declares “I Conquered the Beer Cheese Trail.”
Columbus, Ohio’s Coffee Trail
A hand-crafted coffee and an egg soufflé sandwich from Fox in the Snow Cafe — Photo courtesy of Wendy Pramik
There are a lot of perks to traversing Columbus’ Coffee Trail. For one, you can experience amazing brews from a variety of establishments including in-house micro roasters, local bakeries and non-profit coffee houses that give back to the communities they serve. You can also get a Coffee Trail card where the more stamps you collect, the more prizes you can earn, like a free T-shirt or mug.
Whether you’re hankering for a specific coffee or want to experience a new brewing method (think pour over, cold brew on draft and Chemex), there’s no wrong way to caffeinate on the Coffee Trail.
Dublin, Ohio’s Celtic Cocktail Trail
An Irish (and Ohio) take on a Louisiana classic. — Photo courtesy of Fadó Pub & Kitchen
When your town’s name is Dublin, you know it’s going to be a real party when St. Patrick’s Day comes around. But you’re not limited to enjoying the Celtic Cocktail Trail in March. This trail is open all year long and serving up incredible Irish-inspired cocktails like the Irish Sazerac at Fadó Pub & Kitchen and the Irish Maid at Matt the Miller’s.
Chile in Albuquerque
In Albuquerque, you’ll find that chile can go with just about everything — Photo courtesy of Getty Images / CampPhoto
Chile is one of the cornerstone dishes of New Mexican cuisine, and there’s no better place to experience it than in Albuquerque, where chefs are taking this traditional dish and transforming it in unique ways.
You can enjoy red chile ribs at El Pinto Restaurant, a steak and eggs Benedict with red chile hollandaise at Mas: Tapas y Vino, or you can even get a pizza with green chile pizza crust at the Golden Crown Panaderia. There’s no one way to enjoy chile, especially in Albuquerque.
Rocky Top Wine Trail
At the Apple Barn, guests can sample from a unique selection of apple-based wines — Photo courtesy of Staci Sagliano, Rocky Top Wine Trail
Not far from the Great Smoky Mountain National Park are five highly acclaimed wineries who have come together to create the Rocky Top Wine Trail. This 12-mile wine trail goes through three Tennessee towns and gives visitors a chance to not only sample excellent wines, but provides travelers a chance to connect with the local culture. The best part of all of this? The self-guided tour through this wine trail is free!
The wineries are close enough to one another to knock out the trail in one day, but why rush? Spread your tastings out and leave time to explore the Great Smoky Mountain National Park, dine at local restaurants and get to know the people who make the region great!