By Sheila Madsen, July 2023:
Maaike Hoekstra launched Flavor Teller in January of 2017. Maaike had spent ten years researching all the great and safe food stands and was ready to connect her guests with people who create culinary magic. These culinary connections – “eat like a local”- were so popular Flavor Teller now has five different experiences for you: Mazatlan Seafood Secrets, Barrio Bites, Mercado & More, Mazatlan Night Eats and Mexican Kitchen Experience. Six tours, if you include the successful Day of the Dead Tour, in early November. You’ll find all the details on her website, flavor teller.com
As Maaike approaches her 6th year of touring she has this to say: “it’s wonderful to have created an ever-growing community of Flavor Teller fans who come back year after year and share their experiences with family and friends. They are my inspiration to continue to create new surprising culinary experiences for the next season.”
Flavor Teller is all about “real food, real stories, real people”. Maaike has carefully planned and tested all of her food tours where you’ll not only experience wonderful new tastes but she’ll tell you about the history of the back streets, and the culture of Mazatlan. It’s the perfect marriage of food, history and culture. “I’ll take you to the best hidden gems in Mazatlan…you’ll visit families keeping Mexican traditions alive. Along the way I’ll entertain you with stories and insights into Mazatlan’s culture and history.” She’s certainly qualified to do all that because Maaike is one of the few Certified Federal Tour Guides [Guia de Turistas General]. To become a federal tour guide it takes 510 hours of classes and practical work, first aid course and fluency in at least one foreign language. What a tasty way to learn about Mazatlan!
Below are three recent reviews from Tripadvisor.
• June 2023 on Mexican Kitchen Experience: “Wow! Just Wow! Now our 3rd of 4 with Flavor Teller, and very much our favorite-to-date! Absolutely perfect experience! Shopping in the Pino Suarez market and learning how the locals shop for their recipes. Preparing the ingredients and bringing it all together with the help of a local chef and grandmother. Can’t wait to make some authentic food for our friends and family back home. 10/10. We were a group of 5 adults and suggest no less than 4 and no more than 6.
• April 2023 on Seafood Secrets: “I recently went on my fourth Flavor Teller Tour, Seafood Secrets. As always, it was fun, informative, and tasty! I love that Maaike gives us lots of information on the history and culture of Mazatlan. I enjoyed see the harbor and learning about the shrimp and tuna boats. The food is always great! It is interesting to learn things like what time of day items are served, the stories of the families behind the street stands and restaurants. I also like knowing which street stands I can safely eat at.
Next time in Mazatlan I will be signing up for another tour!”
• April 2023: “ My husband and I do walking food tours every time one is available in a city we are visiting. We did our first Flavor Teller tour in Mazatlan in 2016 and we were so impressed and pleased that we have taken one or more of these tours each time we have visited Mazatlan. Maika, the founder of this enterprise, is a spectacular tour guide and she has recently employed a local historian, Eduardo, also personable and knowledgeable, to run some of the tours. We toured with him on last year’s Mazatlan trip.
Maika has created 5 different food tours and each one is significantly different and equally worthwhile.Today, for the first time we did the Mexican Kitchen experience, shopping for ingredients at the mercado and cooking with a local chef in her home kitchen. It was just as informative, fun and delicious as each of the other tours. Come this Friday, we will have done each of the other tours twice. If you are planning a trip to Mazatlan DO NOT miss the opportunity to take a Flavor Teller tour. We have never experienced the equal in any other city to which we have traveled.”
Maaike is professional and passionate about food – she’s fun too! “With Flavor Teller you’re guaranteed to taste and experience a different side of Mazatlan.”