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“We had a great time!” 5 of 5 bubbles
Review of Outer Banks Restaurant Tours - CLOSED

Outer Banks Restaurant Tours
Certificate of Excellence
More attraction details
Attraction details
Owner description: Outer Banks Restaurant Tours offers walking and driving tours to restaurants and markets in the Outer Banks of North Carolina. Tours are offered weekly from early May through early October in Duck, Kitty Hawk, and Corolla. Participants meet chefs and owners and sample signature dishes paired with wine or beer. Outer Banks Restaurant Tours also offers a fabulous Brews-day Tuesday Beer Tour, a Thirsty Thursday Winery Tour featuring a picnic lunch on the grounds of the vineyard, a scrumptious Dessert Tour, and Cooking Classes featuring fresh, local ingredients. Be sure to check out our new Blue Crab Kayak and Cook Tour on Tuesdays. It's fun, it's educational, and it's delicious! These tours are truly unique experiences in the Outer Banks. So, bring your appetite and join us for an informative, fun-filled, and hunger-satisfying afternoon!
Canterbury, Connecticut
Level Contributor
36 reviews
10 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
“We had a great time!”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 16, 2014

We had the opportunity to go on 2 Outer Banks Restaurant tours on our vacation this past August. We went on the Kitty Hawk tour first, and enjoyed it so much that we booked the Duck Walking Tour that day! Our guide (and owner) Terry was very personable and knowledgeable about the businesses that we visited. We were able to sample delicious food and drinks from many different restaurants that we would not have ordinarily gone to. The website very clearly describes the experience. Meeting the owners and listening to their stories was particularly interesting to us. My husband and I still talk about the tours and recommend that friends take restaurant tours in any of the cities that they visit, especially in the OBX! Thanks Terry for a great time!

Visited August 2013
Helpful?
1 Thank KRJ99
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
OBXRestaurantTours, Owner at Outer Banks Restaurant Tours, responded to this review, January 18, 2014
Thank you so much for this wonderful review! I'm so glad that you enjoyed the tours in Duck and Kitty Hawk and that you are helping to spread the word about us! We are looking forward to the 2014 season, and hope to see you again on another tour!
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75 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
    67
    3
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    4
    1
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Columbus, Ohio
1 review
“Don't do it”
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed October 26, 2013 via mobile

I was very excited to take this tour with my family but ended the afternoon incredibly disappointed. The first stop was at a waterfront cantina where we were served a sliver of mediocre quesadilla and a virgin (not meant to be) daquiri. Our next stop was Tommy's Market where they have free samples for EVERYONE on Tuesdays. Why did we need to pay money to taste samples when it is free? More importantly, the market is small and we constantly felt like we were in the way of regular customers. The third place, Red Sky, was great--good food and entertaining chef. The fourth stop, Aqua, was also nice. We were served a small portion of fish with wine. Fifth was Elizabeth's and they served a delicious chocolate dessert with red wine. This should've been the last stop but unfortunately we ended at a gelato shop where we were given a tiny scoop of subpar gelato. Three out of six places may not sound that bad but I think the worst part of it was the tour guide. She had no personality and was minimally interactive with our group. Save your $60 for something better.

Helpful?
Thank Pugzrule
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
OBXRestaurantTours, Owner at Outer Banks Restaurant Tours, responded to this review, October 29, 2013
I am sorry you were disappointed in the Duck Walking Tour. I am not sure what you expected, but this tour, as well as all the tours, is described in detail on the website.

Visitors can certainly go to any of the stops on any of the tours on their own without going on the tour. Tommy's Market does tastings every Tuesday. However, our tour groups are given access to the sampling before the tasting officially starts. This gives the owner, Lucinda Hudgins, some time to spend with the group personally and give us an escorted tour and explanation of the history and philosophy of the Market as well as the products the Market carries. If you were to go to the tasting on your own, you would not receive this kind of personal attention. This is one of the benefits of taking the tour. Our groups get to meet chefs and owners, interact with them and learn about their background and about the history of the restaurant or market. Most people taking our tours find this aspect as appealing, interesting, and valuable as the food and drink. If is unfortunate that you were not able to appreciate the time that the owners spent with your group.

If you found some of the food on the tour to be "sub par", again I apologize. Tastes vary, and perhaps the food at certain establishments was just not to your liking. As for the Margaritas at Coastal Cantina, you may have been expecting a tequila or rum taste. Those drinks are wine-based so that they can partially freeze. I may have neglected to tell you that, but I can assure you that the drink did contain alcohol.

Thank you for your comments.
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Concord, North Carolina
Level Contributor
7 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
“outer banks rip off”
1 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 17, 2013

Paid $60 per person and ended up with 12 oz of beer tasting, free samples at a grocery store , 2 -2-3 oz glasses of wine and an appetizer of shrimp and grits. Tour was lead by a Terry who had the personality of a brick. Knew little if anything about the restaurants, grocery store we visited.
From 2-4 the grocery store had free samples for any/everyone, so no value there. Tour ended a 1/2 mile from car. Told we could either walk back with her or go do our own thing.

After posting this, I'm going to email 4 couples I know who are coming next week to OBX to avoid this rip off at all costs. Will also leave a message in the house guest book to warn as many people as I can. This will be the best value of my money I can get from this experience....saving other victims.

Visited September 2013
Helpful?
2 Thank GRHAYS
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
OBXRestaurantTours, Owner at Outer Banks Restaurant Tours, responded to this review, September 19, 2013
I am so sorry that you did not enjoy the Duck Walking Tour and I would like to address some of your comments.

First of all, this tour and all of our tours are described on our website. The description includes all the stops on each tour, and there are links from our website to the websites of each place on the tours. This enables our guests to investigate what each tour has to offer and to make a decision as to which tour would best suit their interests. The Duck Tour that you took included 5 stops. The first stop at Tommy's Market included unlimited tastings of over 20 items. On the second stop at Sweet T's, you received 4 oz. pours of three different beers, paired with different cheeses and chocolate. The third stop, Red Sky Café, provided a cooking demonstration of one of the restaurant's signature dishes, shrimp and grits, of which you also sampled a tapas-sized portion, paired with a glass of wine. At Aqua Restaurant, you were taken on a tour of the spa and received a tapas-sized portion of a dish and a glass on wine. The tour ended at The Sweet Duck, where you received a sample of your choice of gelato. This is exactly what is described on the website.

You are correct that you could go into Tommy's Market and sample the items available on their Tuesday Tasting on your own. This would be true of any of the stops on any of the tours; you can certainly go to any restaurant, shop or market on any of your tours on your own. None of these businesses exist to serve our tours only. The difference in taking one of the tours is that you meet owners and chefs who dedicate their time to spend with the tour group and you have the opportunity to interact with them. Other people who walk in off the street into Tommy's Market for their Tuesday Tasting and not admitted to the tasting 1/2 hour early and do not have the opportunity to be personally guided around the market by the owner, Lucinda Hudgins, to have her explain the various items that Tommy's carries. Other people who walk in off the street into Red Sky Café are not treated to a cooking demo by their head chef. Other people who walk in off the street into Aqua Restaurant are not offered tours of the spa. If you walked into The Sweet Duck, you would be able to taste a sample of gelato, but it would be a small spoon-sized sample, not the cup-size that you received. So, when you say that you could have done this on your own, that is not entirely accurate. Our tour groups do receive special attention and privileges, in addition to samples of some great food and drink.

If you will recall, in my little talk that I give prior to the tour, I encouraged all those going on the tour to interact with the owners and chefs that they would be meeting and to feel free to ask any questions they might like to ask. I don't recall you or your group asking any questions or interacting with the owners and chefs. Certainly you did not ask me any questions, so I am not sure how you are judging my knowledge of the markets and restaurants on the tour. I also explain in my opening remarks that part of the presentation that the owners and chefs would be making would include information on themselves, their background, their food, their business, etc. Because of this, I do limit my comments on the restaurants and markets on the tours. However, had you asked me any questions, I would have been happy to share any information I have with you.

As for your statement about "walking back on your own," again, it is clearly stated on the website that at the end of this tour, participants are left to do as they please. Many people on this walking tour prefer to browse the shops at Scarborough Lane, where we end the tour. Others want to take their time doing other things such as revisiting one or two of the places on the tour as they make their way back to their vehicle. And, others want to walk directly back to their vehicle. If you will recall, when we exited Sweet T's, I explained to the group that there is a lovely boardwalk in Duck that takes you along the sound and that I would like to take the group on at least part of it. I gave the group the option of going to the boardwalk at that point or walking it with me at the end of the tour. The group voted to walk it at the end of the tour. At the end of the tour I went around to each group and offered to take them to the boardwalk and walk it with them. You declined.

Again, I am sorry that you feel the Duck Walking Tour did not meet your expectations. However, I do believe that the tour delivered what was described on the website and in other advertising material. Certainly most others who have taken this tour have a very different reaction to it than you have. Thank you for your comments.
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Durham, North Carolina, United States
Level Contributor
20 reviews
5 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
“Disappointed”
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 17, 2013

Last year we went on the Kitty Hawk tour and LOVED it. This year we wanted to try a new area. We were disappointed with this tour. The first stop is a very nice grocery store but they offer samples on Tuesday already, so why do I need to be on the tour to stop here? The second and third stop were nice and mimicked what I expected from the Kitty Hawk tour. The last stop was a sample of gelato which I felt that I could have walked in and gotten myself. This time I felt that I was being sold to. The group size was too big and not as interactive as the first tour. We were disappointed and felt that it was not worth the money that we spent. I could have gone to a nice restaurant for what we spent. Overall, I would recommend the Kitty Hawk tour, but not the Duck tour.

Visited September 2013
Helpful?
Thank Michael R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
OBXRestaurantTours, Owner at Outer Banks Restaurant Tours, responded to this review, September 19, 2013
I am sorry to learn that you did not enjoy the Duck Walking Tour, and I would like to respond to some of your comments. I have already responded to another person in your group with similar complaints, so I won't go into as much detail here. But, I will reiterate a few things.

All of our tours are described on our website. That description includes each stop on the tour and what you receive at each stop. In addition, there is a link from my website to the websites of each stop on each tour. This is done so that people have the opportunity to investigate each tour and decide which one would best suit their interests.

The Duck Walking Tour is described on the website as having 5 stops, not the 4 that your review seems to indicate. The tour included unlimited tastings at Tommy's Market, samples of 3 beers and finger foods at Sweet T's, a tapas-sized plate of food paired with wine and a cooking demo at Red Sky Café, a tapas-sized plate paired with wine and a tour of the spa at Aqua Restaurant, and a sample of fresh-made gelato at The Sweet Duck. This is exactly what you received on this tour.

In comparison to the Kitty Hawk Tour that you took last year, I feel that the offerings are comparable. On the Kitty Hawk Tour, which also has 5 stops, you started at Coastal Provisions Market, probably with a sample of their crabcakes, and some wine. At Trio, you received a sample plate of their cheeses and a wine tasting of 4-5 North Carolina wines. At The Bad Bean Baja Grill, you received a tapas-sized plate of a signature dish, some chips, salsas, and guacamole, and a sample of a Margarita. Ocean Boulevard either gave you a tapas-sized plate of an appetizer or a variety of small appetizers, depending on the size of your tour group that day, along with an "adult beverage". And, you received small samples of fruit pops and ice cream from Zen Pops.

You are correct that you can go to Tommy's Market, or for that matter, any stop on any of our tours, on your own. All of these businesses are open to the public. However, when you stop at one of these markets or restaurants off the street, you will not get the personal attention from the chefs and owners that we receive. No one is going to walk you around Tommy's Market before their Tuesday Tasting and explain the various products that you find in the market. No one is going to put on a cooking demo for you at Red Sky Café. No one is going to take you on a tour of the spa at Aqua. No chef or owner is going to spend time talking with you and taking questions from you to the extent that they do on these tours. The personal attention that our guests receive, along with the samples of great food and drink, is what makes our tours unique. It is unfortunate that you were not able to appreciate the time and effort that these owners and chefs dedicate to the tour.

Again, I am sorry that the Duck Walking Tour did not meet your expectations. However, I feel that this tour delivered what is promised in the description on the website and in other advertising material. Thank you for your comments.
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New Holland, Pennsylvania
Level Contributor
4 reviews
3 attraction reviews
“Kitty Hawk Restaurant Tour”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 12, 2013

We were on Monday's Restaurant tour in the Kitty Hawk area. At first I thought the price was a bit high for something like this, but it was well worth it! We had several wine tastings & other (full size) drinks and some amazing tappas sized samplings of their foods. We went away from this having sampled enough, we did not need dinner that night. Thank you Terry for a great OBX experience!
Keith & Shelby

Visited September 2013
Helpful?
Thank Shelkay1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
OBXRestaurantTours, Owner at Outer Banks Restaurant Tours, responded to this review, September 15, 2013
Thanks for this wonderful review of our Kitty Hawk Restaurant Tour! I am so glad that you and your husband enjoyed all the food and drink we are treated to on this tour and that you felt the tour is fairly priced for what you receive. It seems many people have a misperception of restaurant tours in that they don't believe they will get much food. While that may be true in other areas of the country, our tours are full of great food and drink, and no one ever goes home hungry!
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