Food Photo Tours: 5 Questions for Eat This, Shoot That! in Santa Barbara
Tara Jones runs Eat This, Shoot That!, which offers culinary photography tours of Santa Barbara, California. We asked her a few questions.
Tara Jones graduated from Brooks Institute of Photography in late 2004 with big dreams and just a few pennies in her pocket. After years of being immersed in the wedding and commercial photography and graphic design industries, and teaching photography to college students, she decided to take a chance on a new venture, Eat This, Shoot That! Combining her love of food and photography, Tara created a tour company that gives the guests of Santa Barbara an opportunity to learn a new skill while being introduced to some of her favorite eateries and tasting rooms. We asked her a few questions...
1. What is a food and photo tour?
A food and photo tour is exactly what you'd expect: a tour that feeds you while teaching you how to take some cool photos. We take our guests to multiple eateries, wineries, a craft brewery, and a distillery for tastings. In between those stops and along the way, we teach them how to take better travel, food, and people photos with their cameras and/or smartphones. And then we throw in a little history about Santa Barbara for good measure!
2. What should foodies know about Santa Barbara?
Santa Barbara is a foodies paradise! Last I checked, we have the most restaurants per capita second to New York City. And that's no slouch statistic! We often recommend restaurants and bars that aren't a part of our tour for our guests who are staying in town longer and tell them that Santa Barbara has no bad restaurants....and it's the truth! If a new restaurant isn't good, it won't last here. We're a town full of foodies who love to spread the word about a good eatery!
3. What's this Funk Zone we keep hearing about?
The Funk Zone is only the coolest spot in Santa Barbara these days! (And no, I'm not overselling it.) What used to be an industrial, somewhat deserted area of town quickly became one of the hottest places to be in a matter of months thanks to a few wine bars and restaurant owners that saw some serious potential in the neighborhood. It's overnight transformation into one of the busiest areas of Santa Barbara is pretty astounding for any city, especially one as sleepy and laid back as ours. It's now home to an extensive list of tasting rooms--wine, beer, and spirits--as well as a few choice restaurants that I really can't say enough good things about.
4. Is there a best time of year for foodies to visit Santa Barbara?
Well, there really isn't a bad time of year to visit Santa Barbara since our average year-round temperature is a balmy 70 degrees. (Ha!) But the best time to really dive into what we have to offer on the culinary front would be during the month of October. The whole city hosts a month-long event called Epicure.sb and many restaurants, bars, tasting rooms, tours, etc will offer discounts for the month. It's a can't miss event that gives you 30 days to fall in love with us!
5. What Santa Barbara chefs should we be watching?
Definitely be keeping an eye out for Jason Paluska at the The Lark. His attention to detail and dedication to perfecting the dining experience is not to be missed! I recently had the pleasure of doing dinner at The Lark and was wildly impressed with every dish that came from his kitchen. Definitely two thumbs way up!