Kelly Woodward, a 25-year-old landscape architect by training, started Miami Food Tours in March after many hours of bicycle rides through the city, interviews with local restaurant owners and studying dozens of local history books.
Woodward came to South Florida three years ago from Chicago in search of a change of scenery and a job. She soon fell in love with the city and wanted to share it.
Woodward designed her tours to help tourists “become locals in three hours,” while South Beach residents get a refresher course on the city’s flavors and history.
Many sign up for Woodward’s new Miami Food Tours expecting to get a bite of South Beach cuisine — which Woodward dubs “Mi-yummy.” Woodward also serves up a side of history and architecture.
After ice cream at The Frieze, Woodward will pause with her groups in front of what were once Miami Beach developer Carl Fisher’s offices, now home to The Van Dyke Café, and tell them how Fisher built Miami Beach “out of love” for his much younger teenage bride.
Then she leads her group to Española Way and Ocean Drive, stopping for cortaditos and pastelitos at the original David’s Cafe and Argentine sausage and steak at The Liberty Parilla. Along the way, Woodward pointsout the city’s many architectural styles — Mediterranean, MiMo and contemporary.
The tours cost $45 and take place on Fridays and Saturdays from 11:30 a.m.-2:30 p.m. and offer locals and tourists alike a chance to get a taste of Miami with a side of history.