Avital presents "You Art What You Eat: An Interactive Food Art Experience" on April 20th from 7-9pm. Read More >

Our Team

Our job is to tell you the stories of the people behind the food with a smile and expert knowledge. But first, get to know the faces behind Avital Food Tours. We love what we do and want to share our stories with you!

  • Avital Ungar, Owner/Founder

    team_avital
    • Cocktail

      Cocktail of Choice:

      Boulevardier

    • Lookout

      Favorite Lookout Point:

      Venice Beach

    • Culinary

      Current Culinary Addiction:

      Arugula

    Avital Ungar, founder and owner of Avital Tours, first became serious about the finer points of life while living in Paris and the quaint town of Aix-en-Provence in Southern France. After drinking wine at three in the afternoon as per the cultural norm and gorging her way through the countryside, Avital returned to the United States and began reading “Wine for Dummies” with the hope of adding an academic wine approach to her informal wine education. Now, years later, Avital is a certified sommelier.

    A UCLA graduate, Avital studied Art History, French and Mandarin Chinese but wishes she could have majored in Chocolate. Returning to her hometown of San Francisco after living in Shanghai working in the Chinese Contemporary art market, she began to pursue her interest in art and food professionally. She has been leading artisan food and wine tours for the past five years. She has served as a judge at the 2011 International Chocolate Salon, the Best of the West Rib Competition and has been featured on the Travel Channel, CNN, Travel+Leisure, Conde Nast Traveler and more.

    Read more Arrow

  • Madeline Barbour, Los Angeles City Manager

    Madeline Barbour
    • Cocktail

      Cocktail of Choice:

      Gin Gimlet

    • Lookout

      Favorite Lookout Point:

      Griffith Observatory

    • Culinary

      Current Culinary Addiction:

      Fennel

    Madeline’s obsession with food first began in the womb. The daughter of successful caterers and wine enthusiasts, she learned from a very early age the importance of a good meal. Growing up in the rich culinary history of New Orleans, she was exposed to a wealth of different flavors, cultures, and food traditions; sparking her interest in food on the global scale. This lead to her traveling to over 15 different countries, trying local specialties and studying the intersection of language, food, and culture as a graduate in Anthropology from Tulane University, and later earning her Master’s in Public Health as a Food Aid and Food Security specialist from Tulane University’s School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine.
    Throughout her life Madeline has either occupied a space behind a bar or in a kitchen. A service industry veteran, one day it occurred to her that maybe the thing she does best is also the thing she loves to do…feeding people. Now living in Los Angeles, Madeline she is looking forward to her continued mission of feeding others and helping them explore and embrace the culinary world with open arms…and stomachs.

    Read more Arrow

  • Renee Novak, Operations Assistant and Customer Service

    Renee Novak
    • Cocktail

      Cocktail of Choice:

      Mint Julep

    • Lookout

      Favorite Lookout Point:

      Mt. Hollywood

    • Culinary

      Current Culinary Addiction:

      Stuffed Green Pepper Soup