Let’s be honest: food is at the heart of many of our fondest travel memories. The faintest flavor or scent has the power to transport us back to a beachside resort where a private chef prepared a magnificent feast—or perhaps to a humble streetside cart whose star dish is legendary among locals. Simply put, food is transformative. That’s why Latin Excursions offers cooking classes and culinary tours in nearly all of our Latin American travel destinations.
Preserving regional flavors and traditions and supporting local talent, the classes we offer are one-of-a-kind and can be personalized to your taste. Take a look at some of the exclusive gastronomic experiences we can offer to inspire your upcoming journey:
Havana, Cuba: Cooking and Dominoes Tour
Visit the home of a Cuban family to not only learn how to cook Cuban comfort food but to also learn of their everyday lives. Afterward, it’s time to play a game of dominoes, a national pastime in Cuba that is played in public parks as much as it is enjoyed in private homes. Take a seat and learn the rules—this is your entryway into socializing with locals without the need to speak perfect Spanish!
Cartagena, Colombia: Bazurto Market and Open-Air Cooking Class
Alongside a local chef, set out for an adventurous experience in the Bazurto market to try exotic fruits and local foods along the way. This traditional market is a vibrant and exciting place, full of locals, noise and smells (not recommended for the faint-hearted!). Afterward, head to a private home in the Old City where you will learn how to make some of Cartagena’s most typical dishes in a beautiful open-air kitchen. The menu may include dishes such as ceviche, seafood soup in coconut milk and white wine, coconut rice, plantain chips, and a few other Colombian secrets based on your preferences.
Cusco, Peru: Creative Cooking Class
Enjoy a visit to the local San Pedro market to learn about local Peruvian products and buy some of the ingredients you will use for a private cooking class. San Pedro is renowned for its exquisite variety of native products from Cusco and the surroundings. Continue your amazing journey in the world of local flavors as you enjoy a private cooking class at Map Café, a creative space located in the courtyard of the Museum of Pre-Columbian Art.
Montevideo, Uruguay: Traditional Ingredients, Paired With Wine
Go beyond mere tasting of dishes as you join a local top chef on a culinary experience coordinated in a private format (by reservation only). The experience takes place within an informal atmosphere and is a great excuse for travelers to meet new friends. Accompanied by a glass of regional wine, you will learn about the traditional local products of Uruguay such as the Butia, dulce de leche, olive oil, Uruguayan cuts of meat and other typical local ingredients.
Lima, Peru: Insider Experiences With a Local Chef
In the morning, when produce is at its freshest, meet up with our handpicked local chef for an insider experience at one of the most iconic and picturesque markets in Lima. See, taste and purchase the ingredients from the coast, mountains and jungle—such as chirimoya, mango, passion fruit, aguaymanto and more. The market boasts a variety of native produce, not to mention an impressive seafood section offering prawns, shrimp, various fish, octopus and scallops. After the market, move on to an exclusive restaurant for a very personal cooking experience in a professional kitchen with our culinary expert.
Havana, Cuba: Food Tour and Lunch at Jibaro
Guided by Chef Diana, you will visit a produce market to learn about the different ways (and prices) Cubans have access to food. Then lunch at Jibaro, where you will learn how to make a real Cuban mojito, and feast on typical Cuban food with a twist. Jibaro is one of Havana’s best-kept secrets
Buenos Aires, Argentina: Street Food and Wine
Explore some of the most characteristic flavors of Argentina’s capital upon this group-friendly tour. Because this class focuses on the famed street food dishes of Buenos Aires, you can expect to repeat many of these simple recipes upon your return home. While enjoying wines from various regions of the country, try your hand at chorizo sandwiches with chimichurri ( parsley-based sauce), spicy Andean potatoes and alfajores (traditional sandwich biscuits filled with dulce de leche). Before we say goodbye, we’ll enjoy a yerba mate to aid with digestion and learn about its origins and how to prepare the traditional drink.
Paraty, Brazil: An Evening with Chef Yara Castro Roberts
Join renowned Brazilian chef Yara Castro Roberts to prepare and enjoy a refined dinner with the best of Brazilian cuisine. This activity takes place in the early evening in the chef’s atelier, located in Paraty’s historic center. Kick things off by learning about all the necessary techniques as well as the ingredient list for making a perfect caipirinha, Brazil’s national cocktail. In total, you will learn 1-2 types of Brazilian appetizers, salads and main courses, as well as desserts.
Millahue Valley, Chile: Prepare Culinary Treasures Near a Vineyard
Participate in a Colchagua and Cachapoal culinary experience where our handpicked chef invites you to join along for a market trip in search of the freshest local ingredients. Return to Viña Vik—a luxury retreat with impeccable design—to cook these culinary treasures using avant-garde international techniques. Inspired by the local huasos (Chilean countryman) cooking techniques, experience a traditional Chilean BBQ in the hotel’s beautiful vineyard.
Amazon, Peru: Jungle Dishes for Young Chefs
The Peruvian Amazon is full of natural wonders, from exotic flora to colorful fauna—but did you ever expect to find a children’s cooking class in this region of Peru? In this fun, hands-on learning opportunity, children will learn how to make a regional favorite dish, juane! Our delightful chefs will teach blossoming cooks how to prepare this yummy treat that consists of a bijao leaf filled with spiced rice, chicken, boiled egg and olive.
For more information and what to see, do and where to stay, contact our award-winning travel team.