Fact #1: Baby Boomers love to dine out. Fact #2: Baby Boomers love to travel. What happens if we put those two things together? You have the perfect formula for a new adventure in the form of agritourism and vinotourism—not to mention molecular gastronomy.
If you appreciate good wines, what could be better than spending your holiday in the vineyard where your favorites are produced? Think Tuscany… Chile… South Africa… Spain… Portugal. You get the idea.Vinotourism is the practice of visiting and/or staying in the wine regions of the world, and it is a fast growing trend in the travel industry. In 2011 the U.S. Travel Association estimated that 17%, or 27.3 million travelers, had engaged in “culinary or wine-related activities while traveling,” a figure that increases every year, as more Baby Boomer travel-ers discover this idyllic trend.
The options range from a half/full day trip to a local vineyard to a multi-week vacation deep within major wine regions in Europe, South America and beyond. Sight-seeing is included, sure, but most of your days are spent tasting and dining at different wineries. Of course, to each his own as to how much wine immersion is your personal preference. There are hundreds of travel companies around the world that provide these full range of options for your next Baby Boomer travel adventure. Two top quality companies are wineloverstours.com and iberianwinetours.com.
Some Baby Boomer travel aficionados are also interested in almost every aspect of food production: grains, fruits, vegetables, cheeses, livestock and much more. People who want to check out of the hustle of city hotels and get closer to the land are now opting to stay in renovated, working farmhouses that offer dining, cooking classes, olive picking and other farming activities.
Known as agritourism or agriturismo, this cottage industry has now grown into a major style of travel for many people who desire something a little out of the mainstream. The farmhouse atmosphere is casual, homey and educational, providing a different experience that Baby Boomer travel fans just love. There is a phenomenal interest now in foods that are organic, gluten-free and non-GMO, so be sure to take note when travel guru Rick Steves writes, “Some farmhouse B&Bs are simply that, and are not really working farms, though are still fine places to stay. But if you want the real thing, make sure the owners call their place an agriturismo.”
The magic and mystery that Chef Ferran Adrià, formerly of the famously experimental El Bulli on the Costa Brava, conjures up are a result of the scientific molecular gastronomy, defined by molecularrecipes.com as “…the chemical reasons behind the transformation of [food] ingredients, as well as the social, artistic and technical components of culinary and gastronomic phenomena.”
I’m not sure what that means either, but I did dine at a practitioner of this process (3-star restaurant Arzak in San Sebastian) and enjoyed it immensely. An hour’s flight from Barcelona and you’ll land on Spain’s north coast in San Sebastian which is “the city with the most Michelin stars per square meter in the world,” a factoid from this hotel blog that also lists here all the San Sebastian Michelin-starred restaurants. If Baby Boomer travel is your thing, consider a visit soon.
By Len Gulino