CULINARY DELIGHTS OF VIETNAM - Riverstone Kitchen€¦ · Street food is for everyone – rich,...
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CULINARY DELIGHTS OF VIETNAM WITH BEVAN & MONIQUE SMITH
Vietnamese cuisine is highly regarded as one of the world’s best, but few realize the variations that are found in the regional cuisines. Just like the country’s geographical divisions, the food can also be separated in to South, Central, and Northern style. The experts have created this tour with a focus on food! As you travel up the coast on this tour, experience the best Vietnamese culture, history, beaches, and food, all the while staying in luxury hotels. With exclusive cooking courses and meals at top restaurants, this tour is sure to please the taste buds.
Your Culinary tour hosts Bevan and Monique Smith met and married in Brisbane, Australia, and returned to New Zealand in 2004 to start a family and build a restaurant. Riverstone Kitchen opened in November 2006 and together Bevan and Monique have established a reputation for honest, fresh food and friendly efficient service.
Their philosophy is based on using seasonal ingredients, locally sourced and simply prepared. They believe in ethically produced food and in the basic assumption that all people should, and can, eat well.
Travel is at the Heart of Riverstone Kitchen. Indeed Riverstone was born as a direct result of Bevan and Monique Smiths travels abroad before returning home to turn their collective experiences and love of food into what has now become Riverstone Kitchen.
Bevan left the family farm in 1991 to train as a chef in Christchurch. After working for several years in London at Terence Conran’s La Pont de la Tour and Michael Caine’s Canteen. Five seminal months
travelling through the Mediterranean followed before returning home. Unable to shake off the travel bug, Bevan then moved to Australia where he became head chef at Philip Johnson’s acclaimed ècco bistro.
Since returning home in 2004 and establishing Riverstone Kitchen in a paddock on the family farm, 15 minutes north of Oamaru, North Otago, Bevan and Monique have defied the odds and achieved huge success. In 2010, Riverstone Kitchen was the supreme winner of Cuisine magazine’s coveted Restaurant of the Year award.
They have since published two cookbooks and about to publish their third. They also regularly contribute to the Otago Daily Times and NZ Herald.
Bevan toured Vietnam with Monique and their two young children, for the first time last year drawn by its vibrant food scene exotic, culture and stunning scenery. “We had a fabulous time and can’t wait to return. It was simply unforgettable!”
“VIETNAM IS EVERYTHING YOU CAN IMAGINE BUT ALSO SO MUCH MORE! I AM REALLY LOOKING FORWARD TO HEADING BACK THERE AND SHARING OUR DISCOVERIES WITH OTHERS. JUST FANTASTIC!”
31 JUL CHRISTCHURCH > AUCKLAND > SINGAPOREFly to Singapore and overnight at an airport hotel.
01 AUG SINGAPORE > SAIGON Day at leisure. Enjoy dinner at a Wrap and Roll restaurant.
02 AUG SAIGON SIGHTSEEING & VESPA TOUR City tour of Saigon including historical landmarks such as Notre Dame Cathedral, Central Post Office, Presidential Palace and the War Remnants Museum. This evening enjoy a street food tour by Vintage Vespa.
03 AUG SAIGON COOKING CLASS WITH CHEF CAM VANThe talented chef Ms. Nguyen Dzoan Cam Van has made great contributions to glorifying Vietnamese culinary culture. Learn about and taste some of the ingredients used in the local cuisine and watch the buying and selling rituals of a Vietnamese market. After the market, drive to her home in Saigon to enjoy an authentic hands-on cooking class in a peaceful setting. Afternoon at leisure.
04 AUG SAIGON > DANANG > HOI AN Fly to Danang today and transfer to your stunning hotel. Enjoy a walking tour around this World Heritage-listed ancient town. See the old merchant’s houses with influences from Chinese, Japanese and Vietnamese architecture; the 400-year-old Japanese Covered Bridge; the Assembly Hall of the Chaozhou Chinese Congregation with outstanding wood carvings; and the colourful market with stalls brimming with local specialties including silk, which can be turned into fashionable garments within a day or two. Lunch at Morning Glory to experience Hoi An specialty foods. This afternoon meet with an artisan to learn about the history of the lantern, an essential part of the Hoi An culture. You’ll have the opportunity to create your own.
05 AUG HOI AN COOKING CLASS WITH CHEF DUCEnjoy a morning tour of one of the most colorful local marketplaces in all of SE Asia. Chef and proprietor Duc Tran from Mango Mango restaurant creates eclectic and innovative flavours reflective of his worldwide culinary journey. A passionate and extremely talented chef with in depth knowledge on
the Hoi An food scene, Duc will take you on a culinary journey embracing a combination of refreshing flavours, beautiful presentations as well as a visit to Hoi An Market to meet the vendors who supply him daily with some of the finest and freshest ingredients. Join Duc in an intimate hands-on learning at his boutique restaurant, and reward yourself with a wonderful meal at the end of the class.
06 AUG FARMING LIFE ON HERB GARDEN TOUR Experience an organic discovery tour with the local farmers in the rural outskirts of Hoi An. Start with a leisurely 4km bike ride through the countryside, heading to Tra Que vegetable village which is named after a sweet scented herb they grow and use to flavour Hoi An specialties. Learn about the history and custom of this charming village and join the friendly farmers to learn the traditional gardening methods and how they cultivate vegetables. Learn how to soak and grind rice by your hand, then make rice paper and grill it on charcoal.
07 AUG HOI AN FISHING LIFE TOUR Visit a local fishing village and learn about the lives of fishermen in this area. Walk through the village and take the time to observe local life and gain an insight into the community here. Board a local river boat to
cruise down the Cua Dai River. Hop off the boat along the shore and try your hand at casting the Vietnamese fishing nets. Have a go in the unique round basket boats and learn how to paddle them. Travel by basket boat through the tranquil coconut-palm flanked waterways here and learn how the area was a hot bed of activity during the American-Vietnamese war. Later, re-board the larger boat and enjoy a refreshing cool drink as you head back up river.
08 AUG HOI AN > DANANG > HANOI Fly to Hanoi. Eating on the street is a very typical activity for Hanoian’s and makes up an important part of the city’s unique culture. Street food is for everyone – rich, poor, old, young, tourist and local alike. Start your street food tour with an overview of local ingredients by visiting a food market with your chef. Finish the trip dining at Ngon (Delicious) Restaurant which is set up like a local food market selling specialties from each region in Vietnam.
09 AUG HANOI In the morning, meet with Mr. Dzung for a market tour. He can show you how to select the freshest & typical ingredients for local foods. Visit his beautiful private home for a private hands-on cooking class. Taste your own creations at lunch.
This afternoon visit the Temple of Literature, for an overview about Hanoian culture and appreciation for ancient Vietnamese architecture. We also visit the Museum of Ethnology to get to know Vietnam’s 54 ethnic groups. This evening enjoy a traditional Water Puppet performance.
10 AUG HANOI > HALONG BAYDrive to Halong Bay and board your boat to cruise the beautiful limestone islands. Visit the Tien Ong cave, adorned with stalactites and stalagmites, and Cua Van fishing village. This will allow a closer look into the lives of local fishermen before you transfer to a bamboo boat and are rowed slowly through the village with a museum and a school amongst floating houses. Optional cooking class this evening on the boat.
11 AUG HALONG BAY > HANOIVisit Soi Sim Island, here you can relax in the azure water of Halong Bay. Back to Hanoi this afternoon.
12 AUG HANOIEnjoy your day at leisure for last minute shopping around the Old Quarter.
13 AUG HANOI > SINGAPORE Fly to Singapore and onto your connecting flights to Auckland and Christchurch.
14 AUG ARRIVE CHRISTCHURCH Your Vietnam Journey Concludes
Price: NZ$6,900 per person (share twin)
Includes: Return economy class airfares from Christchuch including taxes. 12 Breakfasts, 4 Lunches, 4 Dinners. Cooking classes & market tours. Private transfers and transportation. Private sightseeing with English speaking guides. 11 nights’ in Deluxe hotels. 2 Day/1 Night Halong Bay cruise aboard the exclusive ‘Ginger’ Boat. Culinary tour hosts Bevan & Monique Smith.
Not Included: Personal expenses. Travel insurance. Meals not mentioned. Drinks. Kayaking. Gratuities. Vietnam visa.
CONTACT DEBBIE BRADFORD, NZ TRAVEL BROKERS
Tel: 03 445 3346 or Email: [email protected]