Girlfriends’ Getaway Inspires Local Chef to Cook Up a New Venture
Evansville Culinary Food Tours
“I get by with a little help from my friends” should be Cheryl Mochau’s theme song. The personal chef was inspired to start her business, Food Tours, after a girlfriends’ getaway to Saint Louis with her bff. Feeling in need of a pick me up, Cheryl invited her friend to take a road trip to break out of a cooking rut. They walked “The Hill” district, stopping in authentic Italian bakeries and restaurants along the way, sharing entrees on a self-made walking tour. Mochau and her gal pal had so much fun they repeated the adventure in Franklin and Nashville, TN and Louisville, KY. And thus, the inspiration for Food Tours of Evansville was born.
Cheryl grew up cooking with her mother and particularly liked baking personal size pies for each of her five older brothers. She fearlessly took a step to professionalize her talents by simply calling up a hotel and asking if she could visit their kitchen. The head chef replied, “Come on over now.” He hired her on the spot and provided an opportunity to experiment with various aspects of cooking over the years. Her talents were self-taught as she struggled to find the time to go to culinary school while working.
Tiring of the long and demanding hours of hotel business, Cheryl made the leap to becoming a personal chef in 1991 after reading an article in Self Magazine about a woman who followed her passion for cooking to become a personal chef. She and her husband moved to Evansville from New England 18 years ago where she continued as a personal chef; her mainstay, with culinary tours woven in.
Cheryl Mochau’s Evansville Food Tours are walking tours in Haynie’s Corner, Franklin Street, Downtown Evansville and New Harmony. She recently expanded the tours to Henderson and is scouting Owensboro. She offers two public tours each month and private group tours as well. Some tours are for lunch, while others are for dinner. Smaller portions are served during the tour, allowing participants to try several food items at each restaurant. Cheryl prearranges each meal with the restaurants to keep the tour moving. Tastings may include house specialties, or items off menu.
Social media and word-of-mouth communication are her most successful marketing avenues. Mochau’s tours have been successful enough to earn a respectable number of repeat customers.
If you wish to explore her upcoming scheduled tours or book a private tour for your group, visit evansvilleculinarytours.com.
Author: Ellen Horan Editor: Abby Elpers