Passing the Conch...
Our founder, Sheryl grew up in Islamorada in the heart of one of the most historical neighborhoods in the Florida Keys. Her love of food and the rich history that our island holds led her to establish the original Islamorada tour with captivating stories & local art, all accompanied by food. Designed to satisfy all taste buds and sample all the major influences of keys cuisine, the tour was meant to provide a taste of history and culture, coupled with the beauty of our island. It was also set to include glimpses of some locations and stories about the popular Netflix TV series Bloodline along with restaurants featured on The Food Network’s Diners, Drive-ins and Dives.
After being assigned to write a story about the food tour for a local magazine I learned the food tour was looking for a guide to help grow the business. With experience in travel and an interest to focus on culture through cuisine I saw this as a perfect match. Then, once my story drove guests from Marathon to head up to Islamorada for the experience, Sheryl decided to hire me as her first employee. I started working as a guide in 2017.
We worked together for over 5 years to enhance the tour as needed, adding historic stops and ensuring we curate the best food from the best restaurants in downtown Islamorada. Our continued focus was to provide the best experience for our guests even through the challenges of hurricanes and the pandemic. All of our hard work shows through our reviews. We achieved 123/125 “5 star” reviews on Trip Advisor.
The last two years together, I ran the tours as Sheryl mostly focused on her health. Sadly we recently lost her to cancer in June of 2022. After the transition and now owning and operating the food tour business, I plan to move forward with the tour. Her family shared with me that it was what she wanted too.
So we shall keep our focus on our popular Islamorada Food Tour and also add a few evening happy hour tours. The new tours will continue to provide great culinary curations and include cocktails too. As with each and every tour, our guests can expect to learn history, taste cuisine of award winning chefs and restaurants, visit “local” places and now in the evening tours they will also have the chance to toast the sunset too.
The Florida Keys Food Tour will evolve and continue to grow, but it will never forget its early roots and what makes it special. Many guest consistently share with us it was “a highlight of our trip to Islamorada,” and I intend to keep it that way. The tour has moved on to the next, but the shell remains the same – a conch. A Florida Keys Conch.
Stay adventurous, Craig