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Eat. Learn. Walk. Eat Some More

This weekend, explore Brookline’s Russian culinary culture and heritage

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The Brookline-Brighton area is home to hundreds of thousands of Russian immigrants, and a variety of Russian delis, restaurants and shops. Photo by Ahla staff

Don’t know pirozhki from pilmyeni? Borscht from blintzes? Do you want to know? Find out the difference — and more — during a walking tour of Russian cuisine in Brookline and Brighton this weekend.

Each Saturday, guides from Ahla Brookline Food Tours lead culinary explorations of the Brookline/Brighton neighborhood, home to a sizable Russian immigrant population, from Soviet Refusniks to post-Communist economic adventurers. In their wake, Russian restaurants and gastronomic shops have sprung up like mushrooms.

The three-hour tour stops at Russian Village, Babushka Deli, Vernissage, the Fireplace and Athan’s, among other places. Along the way, your palette will get better acquainted with blintzes (pancakes stuffed with everything from minced pork to jam), Siberian dumplings, caviar, tortes, and oh yeah, vodka. Plus, learn how to use Russian ingredients to stir up your meals at home.

The tours, held rain or shine, take place Saturdays from 2 to 5 p.m. The $44 price tag includes all food (enough samples to equal a meal, according to Ahla), and discounts are given for groups. For more information, contact Julia Goldberg at julia@brooklinetour.com or call 617-821-7667. Ahla also offers a walking tour of Kosher Brookline on Sundays.

Caleb Daniloff can be reached cdanilof@bu.edu.

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