Feel free to contact us if you have any additional questions.
Are reservations necessary?
Yes. Please make reservations through our website at www.cincinnatifoodtours.com. Online reservations for Findlay Market tours end 2 hours prior to time of tour. Online reservations for other tours end 24 hours prior to time of tour if there are no bookings, or 2 hours prior to time of tour if others have already made reservations. For last minute availability, please call 513-602-5602.
How many people will be on the tour?
For public tours, 16 is the maximum for The Original Findlay Market Tour. 8 per tour is the maximum for the other public tours. Please call for special situations or information about private groups.
Where do I park and where do we meet?
With the exception of the Wander Walnut Hills tour and The All-American Food Tour in Pendleton, all tours start at Findlay Market where parking is available for a small fee in the public lots associated with the market. Information is available at www.findlaymarket.org/parking. Limited street parking and several private lots are also available in the neighborhood. For tours originating at Findlay Market, we meet at the information desk across from Taste of Belgium in the center of the market house. A map is available at www.findlaymarket.org/map. A reminder email will be sent 24 hours before the tour with specific instructions on where to meet.
The Wander Walnut Hills tour starts at Fireside Pizza, 773 E. McMillan Street, Cincinnati, OH 45206. Free parking is available in a lot across the street from Fireside Pizza. The All-American Food Tour in Pendleton starts at Ziegler Park, 1322 Sycamore Street, Cincinnati, OH 45202, where parking is available in the nearby Ziegler lot. https://zieglerpark.org/parking/
Do we just eat samples?
We do much more than just taste samples. During our Findlay Market tour, we’ll give you an overview of our historic market and spend about 10 minutes getting to know each of five merchants. Our other tours include a brief history of the neighborhood and opportunities to see places you may not have previously visited. We’ll explain the attractions along the route, introduce you to some of the most popular places to grab a bit to eat, and share stories about the neighborhood. We like to say we share food, history, and culture one step at a time.
How much do we eat?
Our tours feature a combination of generous samples, shared plates, small bites, and drinks (where applicable.) Each sample is representative of something that is served at that place of business. Portion sizes vary, but samples (when combined) are usually enough for lunch. In general, most guests find they won’t need another meal right after the tour is finished.
How do I find out what merchants will be on the tour?
We select our merchants based on their availability and staffing as well on our desire to give you a nice variety that represents what is typical at Findlay Market or in the other neighborhoods. At Findlay Market, stops range from a traditional butcher shop to an Italian gelato stand. On our longer “sit-down” tours, we try to include several moderate to fine dining establishments as well as more casual walk-in shops or bakeries. Our Sweet Stroll includes bakeries, pastry shops, and coffee shops. Keep an eye on our Facebook page. If possible, we post the list of confirmed merchants a few days before each tour, but you can also get an idea of where we have been on previous tours by browsing our Facebook or Instagram feed.
Do we walk a lot?
On the Findlay Market tour, you should assume you are on your feet for about 90 minutes. Occasionally we may sit on a bench or at a table for sampling. We walk the equivalent of 2-3 city blocks at Findlay Market. During the other neighborhood tours, we will walk 1.5-2 miles, but we’ll have opportunities to sit down at some stops and ample time to enjoy the samples. Note: We are on our feet for most of the Sweet Stroll with one sit-down stop at a coffee shop.
Are the tours handicap accessible?
The market house itself is accessible at Findlay Market. However, the aisles are fairly narrow and may be extremely crowded on the weekends. If you use a wheelchair, motorized scooter, or other assistance, we recommend you choose a weekday tour at Findlay Market. Many tours include visits to adjoining storefronts that have a step or two to get into the building. If you are unable to navigate the step, we will be happy to bring your sample from these storefront merchants outside to you. The neighborhood tours require more walking, often include stairs, and might be difficult for those with limitations. Please call Barb at 513-602-5602 regarding specific questions about accessibility.
What if it rains or snows?
The Original Findlay Market Tour takes place rain, snow, or shine. All tasting is indoors. We may walk briefly from the market house to an adjacent storefront from time to time so if the weather is threatening, you may wish to bring a jacket or umbrella. We try to operate the neighborhood tours rain, snow, or shine, but because the tours are 2.5-3 hours long and may take us several blocks from our starting point, we reserve the right to cancel due to the threat of dangerous weather or torrential downpours. If such a case arises, you will receive a full refund or opportunity to reschedule.
We adhere to a Common Sense Cancellation Policy. If we think road conditions may be dangerous for you or our guides, we may decide to cancel. Similarly, if rain and wind or sub-freezing wind chill temperatures will cause extreme discomfort, we may cancel a tour. Should the forecast warrant a change, we will do our best to communicate with you at least 24 hours ahead of tour time. Of course, if a tour is cancelled due to weather or other events that are out of our control, you will receive the opportunity to rebook to another date or receive a full refund.
Can I cancel or change my reservation?
You may get a full refund within 24 hours of purchasing. Beyond that, we adhere to a Common Sense Cancellation Policy. We understand that unforeseen issues occasionally happen, and we will do our best to work with you to reschedule if necessary. We usually do not offer refunds within 24 hours of the tour time since our merchants are reimbursed for samples based on the number of tickets purchased. For extenuating circumstances or to discuss rebooking, call 513-602-5602.
Are children welcome?
Children are welcome for The Original Findlay Market Tour. If your child will be enjoying the samples, please purchase a ticket for him/her. If you prefer, you may bring or purchase food separately for your child. (The wine/beer add-on is restricted to those 21 and over.) Our neighborhood tours require more walking and longer attention spans, so we recommend guests be 14 and older. We do make an exception for our Sweet Stroll because we know kids love sugar!
Are drinks provided?
Drinks vary by tour. Often a Findlay Market merchant serves a beverage as the sample; i.e. loose-leaf tea. Bottled water, soft drinks, juice, coffee, and tea are available for purchase from various merchants throughout the market. You may also bring your own non-alcoholic drinks along on the Findlay Market tour. Our Cincinnati Streetcar Food Tour includes a glass of wine or beer in the ticket price. Our Beyond the Market Tour includes a wine tasting and at least one other glass of beer or wine. The All-American Food Tour in Pendleton includes a flight of beer and one craft cocktail sample. Each guest on The Signature Over-the-Rhine Tour and Wander Walnut Hills Tour receives water with the option to purchase additional drinks, alcoholic or non-alcoholic, along the way. On our Sweet Stroll, we include one specialty coffee or tea, or one glass of wine or beer for each guest.
Are restrooms available?
Public restrooms are available at Findlay Market. Since our time is limited, we recommend you use the restroom before or after the tour. Most stops along the neighborhood tours have public restaurants available for our use.
Do you make accommodations for dietary restrictions, food preferences, or allergies?
We are unable to accommodate allergies at this time. Since we don’t always know what each merchant will serve, we leave it up to you to ask them about specific ingredients or dietary restrictions that may concern you. With multiple stops on each tour, we hope that you will find most of the samples fit your needs. (If you are concerned about vegetarian options, most tours include at least three samples that should fit your needs.)
What does the add-on for wine or beer include on the Findlay Market Tour?
Available on weekends only and for an additional $5, you can add a glass of wine or a craft beer from Market Wines after the conclusion of the 90-minute Findlay Market tour. Market Wines is a retail shop and bar at Findlay Market so this is generally an indoor option. If you prefer to be outside, you may take your wine or beer to the OTR Biergarten on the Elm Street end of the market house (weather permitting).
What if my friend wants wine, and I prefer the Biergarten?
Both are available at Market Wines and your add-on allows you to choose wine or beer. When the Biergarten is open (March-October), you may take your drinks outside to enjoy.
Is there time for shopping?
Because each merchant or restaurant expects us to arrive at a designated time, we do not allow time for shopping during the tour. We recommend shopping either before or after any of our tours. Findlay Market is open Tuesday-Friday from 9-6, Saturday from 8-6, and Sunday from 10-4. Hours vary for neighborhood retail shops.
Do I tip the tour guide?
Although gratuities are never required, it is customary in the tourism industry to offer a gratuity to a tour guide for a job well done. We think of gratuities as another form of feedback so feel free to let your guide know what you thought of her service. A 10-20% gratuity is most common in the industry.