While Malibu is best known for beaches, celebrity sightings, and oceanfront mega-mansions, it’s also got a burgeoning wine scene and is home to upwards of 60 vineyards and multiple wine-tasting rooms. To sip several of them without determining a designated driver, book this six-hour tour run by owner and guide Riley Rhodes, which takes you to three wineries for VIP tastings with stellar views of the coast, canyons, and Malibu Lake along the way. (The tour usually includes a stop at Rosenthal, one of Malibu’s most picturesque tasting rooms situated just across the PCH from the beach.)
Rhodes will pick you up at the Fairmont Miramar and you’ll spend the day as part of a small group, or you can opt for a private tour. Plus, all tours come with lunch from Santa Monica’s beloved Bay Cities Italian Deli, which guests enjoy while lounging at one of the wineries. “Wine is such a social environment, and we’ve had couples come back and do the tour years later together because they met and became friends on our wine tour,” says Riley. “It’s the perfect way to bring people together.”
Santa Monica Farmers Market Tour
There’s a reason you’ll find many of the city’s top chefs — including FIG’s own Jason Prendergast — at LA’s flagship farmers market. The Santa Monica Farmers Market, which takes place on Wednesday and Saturday mornings, offers a vast, vibrant array of the season’s most fabulous produce all year long, from familiar fruits to obscure heirloom herbs. You’ll also find other offerings like sustainably raised meats and poultry from small farms, as well as specialty nuts, grains, and cheeses.
Cookbook author Amelia Saltsman, who wrote The Santa Monica Farmers Market Cookbook among others, leads 90-minute group tours of the market bimonthly and can arrange for private outings by request. During the tour, you’ll stop and chat with farmers, sample some of the market’s bounty, and learn tricks of the trade from expert Saltsman. “Wherever they live, I want to teach them how to read a farmers market, to understand how a market is set up. These are skills they can take home,” she says of her guests. That might mean sharing a quick recipe, explaining how a white squash differs from a green one, or noting how to make sure the next market you hit is focused on farmers and growers. The next tour, taking place November 6, will be overflowing with autumn colors and pretty produce such as Brussels sprouts, pomegranates, persimmons, and a rainbow of winter squashes.
Venice Beach Food Tour