Beyond the authentic taste: The tourist experience at a food museum restaurant


This study investigates the factors influencing food experiences perceived by food tourists in the context of a food museum and its associated restaurant. A qualitative exploratory approach was employed, using Chinese tourists visiting Hangzhou Cuisine Museum in Zhejiang province. This research finds that food tourists look for knowledge accumulation and gastronomic experiences when visiting a food museum and restaurant complex, and each experience is formed by both tourist and setting factors. The findings highlight the significant and more complex engagement of setting factors in the museum restaurants. The institutionalised characteristics of museums are equally expected within the in-house restaurants, and social trust in the museum along with external factors that verify authentic representation of the museum contributed to the perceived authenticity of the food tourist\u27s dining experience. This paper discusses broad implications for food experience design at food museums and restaurants as emerging tourism attractions

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