Dishcrawl, a three-year-old Palo Alto, Calif.-based company, has planted ambassadors (you could call them tour guides) in several major and not-so-major cities across the country, with the goal of taking local residents and tourists on a one-night restaurant excursion. Think of it like a guided gallery walk, common in the art world, but this time with restaurants rather than paintings.
The idea is simple, but there are a few parameters. For one, there are no chain restaurants on the tour — Dishcrawl’s goal is to introduce crawlers to local food culture, rather than sending them to a restaurant they could find in Anytown, USA.
Spokane ambassador Brianna Badili explains the setup: The concept is sort of like a neighborhood progressive dinner, but rather than going tto a friend’s house, you’re visiting some of the city’s best eateries.
“We go to four different restaurants in one night, starting at 7 o’clock, and each restaurant will have a dish — something small — and then we’ll go to another restaurant,” says Badili.
Many Dishcrawls are built around a theme. One in Fargo, N.D., took crawlers on a bacon-themed tour, with each venue presenting a different take on the cured meat. Spokane’s first Dishcrawl, set for July 10, will have an “Around the World” theme. A group of up to 25 crawlers will wind through downtown streets, sampling international fare at each stop.
Expect some suspense paired with your vittles. You won’t know the location of the eateries until you get there (although some hints are being dropped via Twitter leading up to the Dishcrawl), so it’s almost a blind date with your city’s restaurants, a curve ball to take you out of your comfort zone.
Vegetarians won’t be left out; just let organizers know if you don’t eat meat and they’ll accommodate you. Keep in mind, though, the $45 ticket covers food, but you’re on your own for drinks — after all, it’s a Dishcrawl, not a pub crawl.
Dishcrawl • Wed, July 10 at 7 pm • To register and learn more, visit dishcrawl.com/spokane • For hints about participating restaurants, follow Dishcrawl Spokane at @dishcrawlspo