What people are saying about Chef Todd’s Tours
A culinary tour with Todd Kniess is an adventure to be savored. We recently joined Todd on a trip to southwest France. The small size of our group allowed us to enjoy meals at great restaurants that did not disappoint. Our daily excursions were interesting and unusual. Because of Todd's connections in the area we were able to see and do things that would otherwise have been unavailable tous. We are looking forward to joining Todd on future trips.
— Sheila and Frank, Pleasanton
We took the truffle tour in the southwest of France and had a terrific time. Traveling with Todd Kniess on one of his tours is like going on a trip with a very dear friend, one who is not only well-travelled and knowledgeable, but eager to introduce you to all of his secret favorite places. Not to be missed!
—Cynthia & Marc, San Diego
I'm not an organized tour kind of guy. All too often they are rigidly organized tours of gift shops. Todd's tours are different.
First of all, you have a home base in a local setting — not American hotel chains, but small inns, auberges, or similar intimate environs. The excellence of the food and wine goes without saying, but the amazing thing is that Todd seems to gain entrée into many places that would notnormally be open to the casual visitor: wineries without visiting hours are somehow open, historical locations not open to the public suddenly are, etc.
Todd always has local support from someone who lives in the vicinity and knows the ropes. Instead of visiting a local store with truffles in bottles, you go truffle hunting with a farmer and visit the truffle market, where the farmers bring their fresh wares in baskets and barter over the prices (including the folks who work out of the trunk of their
cars). Instead of a sterile tasting room, you go into the fields with the wine maker and retire back for barrel tastings (and you need to learn how to spit).
Since all the basics (lodging, food, wine, tips) are included, you enjoy an immersive, relaxing experience without having to fret over the details. I can't think of a nicer vacation, especially if you are an epicure.
— Eric, Berkeley
Todd's trip to Burgundy was a delight from start to end. We stayed in a wonderful place, indulged in wonderful meals (including Todd's to-die-for duck confit), were treated like royalty at the wineries we visited, and enjoyed fascinating conversations as we ate, drank, relaxed and were driven around.
— Vicky & David, Palo Alto
We went on two French tours that Todd organized, guided and drive the van for. He was wonderful in all aspects: the tours were very well organized with amazingly interesting wine and food. Todd was a quite knowledgeable guide, from whom I learned a lot. The fact that he drove the van meant that we could taste all the wine we wanted, which was an added bonus — especially since he is a good driver. But the best fun was getting to know Todd, who is invariably good-humored, interesting and a joy to be with.
— Paula & Mike, Berkeley
We visited Provence with Chef Kniess in June 2014 and he is a great surprise — an outstanding French Chef who is fun to travel with and makes everyone feel comfortable. The itinerary was amazing as was the food which included three Michelin stared restaurants. We have been to Provence many times and visited most of the towns on the itinerary but because of Chef Kniess’s insights each destination included new and fun experiences along with, of course, amazing food. The highlight of the trip was visiting the local market in Luberon and purchasing the ingredients for dinner with him then returning to the country inn and helping him prepare it.
— June & Larry, Laguna Niguel
Having taken all three of Todd's trips to France, I can unconditionally recommend them. I paticularly like the way he organizes a centrally located place to stay from which you make day trips. So you do not waste time packing, moving, and unpacking. Staying in the same place all week also means that if you just want a down day or to explore on your own you can do so without any disruption to the rest of the group. The daily excursions that Todd organizes are all excellent. Many of the excursions are to places that you would be unlikely to find on your own or even if you knew of would be unable to get an invitation to visit. All the meals are organized and range from simple country food to elaborate Michelin star restaurants. Absolutely everything is included — fine wine, tips, and local transportation. The only things you will pay for are the things you buy to bring home.
— Kirk, Berkeley
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