Fork in the Road

Personal chef Cheryl Mochau was in a slump. A foodie rut, she explained to her friends.

“One of my friends suggested going to lunch in St. Louis. It was so out of the blue,” says Mochau, who has been cooking for 27 years. “We sort of just did our own little tour. We tasted as we went along and we had a blast.”

That trip inspired the launch of Mochau’s newest business venture, Evansville Culinary Tours. She offers lunch tours at five different “clusters” (what Mochau calls her tour paths) and four dinner clusters open to the public. The tours include spots along Franklin Street; Downtown Main Street; Haynie’s Corner; New Harmony, Indiana; and Henderson, Kentucky. Those interested also can schedule private tour sessions for a group.

Since starting the tours a year ago, Mochau says she’s heard nothing but positive things from her guests and the restaurants.

“People were very open to this,” she says. “I never had anyone say this would never fly or that there weren’t enough places, because there are.”

Mochau’s tours include at least four 30 to 40 minutes stops. Guests are seated and offered samples of dishes pre-determined by Mochau and the restaurant. Each restaurant stop offers a sampling of a course — appetizer, main dishes, and, of course, dessert. The guests also are treated to tableside visits from chefs and managers to discuss the dishes. No one leaves a tour hungry, she says, and on top of the knowledge she provides as a chef, Mochau and her guests also leave with new friendships.

“They open up and we have fantastic conversations,” she says. “That really is my favorite thing. I’m very happy with the whole people aspect of the tours. I’ve been working in kitchens for a long time. So to get out and have conversations, it’s just so much fun.” 

Evansville Culinary Tours

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