Bainbridge Island Chef Finds Authentic Food Experiences By Staying With Families Abroad

May 25, 2017

Food and travel are intertwined. Sampling a local cuisine is as much a part of visiting a new place as seeing the sites or talking with the locals.

Just ask Brendan McGill. He's the chef and owner of Hitchcock Restaurant Group on Bainbridge Island. He’s spent time staying with families through the exchange group Servas. Doing so has allowed him to take in local cuisine in a way restaurants might not allow. 

He talked with KNKX travel expert Matthew Brumley for this week’s edition of Going Places.

Interview Highlights:

Bainbridge Island Chef Brendan McGill, with KNKX travel expert Matthew Brumley in the KNKX Seattle studios.
Credit Brendan McGill

On Staying With Locals: “It’s great. One of our hosts said ‘It’s about the moments, not the monuments.’ … I wouldn’t have found out about the way they preserve cactus … or how fun it was to see the Afro-Caribbean band that played their town square, or all the firefighters smoking hash together – you don’t get that from the nine-day tour of Lisbon.”

How To Do It: “Find the market where locals shop and go there. Eat in the little stalls around there, the functional places. Hooking up with locals is the way you have to do it. It will take you to places you wouldn’t otherwise go. … What you really find is parts of the country where now your destination is this person’s house. They have room. That’s where the cool food stuff happens.”

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"Going Places" is 88.5's weekly exploration of travel. Our travel expert, Matthew Brumley, is co-founder of Earthbound Expeditions on Bainbridge Island, which provides small group travel to clients including KNKX. Never miss an episode again. Subscribe to Going Places with iTunes Google Play or Stitcher.