During my travels to Mississippi’s Gulf Coast, I was lucky enough to go on a wonderful food tour that did a great job enhancing the foodie scene in the beautiful city of Ocean Springs. Located minutes from Biloxi and Gulfport, Ocean Springs is a charming area bursting with art galleries and delicious cuisine.
Sisters Wendy and Jessica, the owners of Tasty Tours of South Mississippi, hosted my walking and eating event, stopping to share historical information around every corner. Here is a look at what we sampled on our fun three-hour Tasty Tours of Ocean Springs event.
Sampling the Goods in Ocean Springs
Partaking in a 5 to 7 food stop tour isn’t for the faint of heart, but luckily these three-year veteran food tour pros have portioned the bites down to sensible sizes. That allowed us to keep walking and not crawling into a food coma.
Starting at the Ocean Spring Chamber of Commerce/Main Street Tourism Bureau, the Tasty Tours of Ocean Springs participants gathered in a small room to discuss how the food tour would play out and to make introductions. We sampled decadent Cinnamon Raisin biscuits by Greenhouse on Porter, as the business was not open at this time of day. Other things available at Greenhouse on Porter include beer, art, and coffee. I got a kick hearing about a popular item they carry, a Pregnancy Biscuit, made with dill pickle flavor, Comeback sauce, and fried onions.
Next, the Tato Nut Donut Shop shared donut holes with us that the community deems “the only real donut”. Tato Nut donuts are made with a potato and all-purpose flour combination, which has less gluten than normal. Blueberry Cake is the most popular donut, but the Maple Strawberry with Chocolate icing caught my eye.
Enjoying a Plate of Perfection
Our third and my favorite stop on the tour was Charred. This upscale eatery would most likely be my go-to restaurant if I lived in Ocean Springs. Here, we ate an Oyster Joachim. Now that may not sound very special, but the presentation, taste, and delivery of the oyster were magnificent! I’ve never eaten anything quite like it. Having just started eating oysters only a short while ago, this might have been one of the best flavor combinations I’ve ever put in my mouth.
Fun fact: We learned that the Gulf Coast region is responsible for 69% of the shrimp and 70% of the oysters consumed in the country.
Eat. Walk. Repeat.
After recovering from the shock factor of how great that oyster was, we moved on to Mosaic Tapas Restaurant & Bar. This huge restaurant, ranked #1 in Ocean Springs, has an amazing menu with many styles of cuisine/tapas plus hookahs and live music. I loved the courtyard patio and our service was impeccable. For our Tasty Tours of Ocean Springs visit, we tried classic Shrimp and Grits (made with a grit cake), a local craft beer, and a Mojito.
At French Kiss Pastries, King Cake and Strawberry Bavarian Cream Cake pieces were sampled. The cute shop was packed with customers, obviously because the food was so good. These pastries were made with top quality ingredients and a lot of hard work went into making them. We all appreciated and devoured them. French Kiss also serves sandwiches, quiche, soups, and salads. After all of this, I decided it was time to loosen my waistband and pencil in preordering a King Cake for next year.
Coming Into the Home Stretch
The sixth course of our Tasty Tours of Ocean Springs itinerary came from Maison De Lu, which had a small buffet was set up for our group. We enjoyed munching on Fried Green Tomatoes, Goat Cheese Torte, Coconut Shrimp, and Escargot Stuffed Mushrooms while enjoying the breeze from the darling courtyard patio. The mushrooms were sinfully delicious. I found the layered Goat Cheese Torte a real treat and an uncommon menu item. It was heavenly spread on sturdy crackers.
Our tour concluded at the Walter Anderson Museum of Art, where we were treated to refreshing Cat Island Cruiser cocktails. The stylish gallery features artworks made or painted by talented locals in the form of pictures, sculptures, and pottery. It is a fascinating place to visit. I could barely tear myself away from the well-stocked gift shop. Surprisingly, Ocean Springs has around 300 artisans in town.
At the end of the tour, Wendy and Jessica sent us home with swag bags of Tuxachanie Coffee Roasters samples and pralines from Candy Cottage. How very Southern of them and a really nice gesture!
Tasty Tours of Ocean Springs: A Tour Worth Splurging On
I would highly recommend taking the Tasty Tours of Ocean Springs tour. We had so much fun and visited many establishments, giving us a good perception of the local food scene. Tickets are $54 per person. I’ve been on dozens of food tours and would rank this one up there with the best.
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