Newport Food Tours is a young company, owned and operated by Marie Larsen Mechtaly and Mehdi Mechtaly. And yes, we are married!
MARIE, was born in Elsinore, Denmark – an old port city on the Danish-Swedish border. She is from a food loving family – her maternal grandfather was a renowned baker and pastry chef, her mother is an accomplished cook, both of her grandmothers were ‘wizards behind a stove’ and her dad, who is a journalist, has been writing about food and food quality for the past 30 years.
“After graduating from high school I started working full time in a restaurant kitchen – saving up for a long trip around the world. I went to Asia, Mexico, Central and South America, the States and back to Denmark, where I enrolled at Copenhagen Hospitality College. I did part of my training in high end restaurants in France and here in Rhode Island where I met my husband”.
“After we got married we decided to embark upon a new adventure, this time in Miami, Florida. There I worked as an epicurean guide, and then we decided to return to our American home in Newport”.
"I am passionate about my job! I find immense joy in meeting new individuals and learning about them while providing a unique dining experience".
MEHDI, is Moroccan-American, and was born in Casablanca.
He, too, is from a food loving family – his mother taught him to cook classic Moroccan dishes, and she also introduced him to a broad variety of dishes from the Mediterranean and France.
As a boy his parents taught him how to butcher and dress a sheep, and from the local fishermen in Casablanca he learned a great deal about seafood. Every summer Mehdi would go to work at his uncle’s farm in the mountains of Morocco where he was taught how to make olive oil.
“I went to hospitality college in Casablanca and graduated shortly before my 18th birthday. I knew I wanted to explore beyond Morocco, so I registered in the Green Card Lottery – and won! I did not speak a word of English, yet started working all sorts of odd jobs to get by and learn the language. As my English improved, I gradually turned my attention towards the hospitality industry”.
Mehdi has worked as a professional mixologist in high end bars in Casablanca, Boston, Providence, Miami and Newport. He is also very knowledgeable when it comes to food, flavors and the spices of his motherland. Mehdi is also a licensed Realtor and is passionate about serving people through his job.