Meet Your Tour Guides

Jenina Mella

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My husband and I chose to settle in Madison as a place where we each could find the environment we want: for him that is access to world class trout streams; for me that is arts, culture & a vibrant food scene. I have had a lifelong interest if food, and the culinary arts. I grew up in a family whose main shared activity was visiting the diversity of restaurants on offer in my native Chicago. I adore cooking and entertaining friends, and sharing all kinds of food tips, preparation and stories. Being a Madison Eats food tour guide combines my passion for food, with my love for my adoptive home and all it has to offer to both visitors and residents.

This city is full of the most amazing people with big hearts who want to share their passions with others, and who dedicate themselves to improving everything around them. That is especially true of the food community here. I have been an unschooling parent to a 23 year old son, with a long association to the Madison-area homeschool community. I look forward to showing you around Madison on your next visit!

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I grew up on the south side of Chicago, but I’ve lived in Madison for 21 years and have been an elementary school teacher for 15 years.  I LOVE Madison-the people, the vibe, the music, the natural beauty and especially the local food scene.  I feel so fortunate to live close to so many local and diverse restaurants that believe in serving meals created with local produce and love. I’ve been passionate about food ever since I was a child. I grew up in an Italian kitchen watching my mother and grandmother create amazing meals. Food is a sensory explosion for me-the taste, the smell, the beauty. I look forward to sharing my passion for Madison and food with you. Let’s eat!

Pat Kirk

I am a musician, artist and entrepreneur with a passion for food. I have deep roots in the music scene here in Madison, where I grew up and went to school. Coming of age amidst our world-class farmers’ market and restaurant scene was a privilege, and helped shape me into the foodie I am today. Eating, cooking, and talking about food are among my absolute favorite things to do. DSC00580Working as a musician, I have enjoyed the opportunity to travel and eat my way around the world. In all my travels, I have yet to find a city which I would rather call home. I love it here and relish every opportunity to share our local treasures with friends old and new.