Kentucky has the Bourbon Trail. Ohio's Butler County has the Donut Trail. Now, Greater Cincinnati and Northern Kentucky have the International Restaurant Trail.
Launched by the World Affairs Council of Cincinnati and Northern Kentucky, the trail features four ethnically diverse restaurants on both sides of the river: Alfio’s Buon Cibo Argentinian/Italian restaurant in Hyde Park; Oriental Wok Chinese restaurant in Hyde Park and Fort Mitchell; Wunderbar German restaurant in Covington; and Leyla Mediterranean Turkish restaurant in Anderson Township.
The trail was conceived in mid-2020 — well into the pandemic world of Zoom meetings and carry-out dinners — as members of the World Affairs Council were holding a virtual meeting, talking about how they could engage people to support the Council’s mission of promoting cultural awareness and international education in the COVID-19 era of masks, social distancing, and quarantines.
Food, of course, is one of the best ways to learn and share something of diverse cultures, and so the idea was born: Why not launch an International Restaurant Trail to encourage people to try new cuisines from around the world, and help struggling family-owned restaurants at the same time?
The idea became International Eats, or i-EATS for short. To jump on the trail, you can download and print an i-EATS passport. If you visit each of the four restaurants within a year and get the passport stamped, you’ll earn a coffee mug and a one-year membership to the World Affairs Council. Just send a photo of the filled-in passport to [email protected].
The World Affairs Council says each of the i-EATS restaurants practices proper social distancing and other protocols, and some provide catering and carry-out options.
The local chapter of the World Affairs Council was established in 1923 and is now headquartered at Northern Kentucky University. Its members work to build global understanding and promote international awareness through the exchange of education, information and ideas, and they do so by working with governments, businesses, and cultural and educational organizations.