Eating at someone's home
When I was a kid we would sometimes go for Sunday dinner at a distance relatives house. They were Italian and the women (an older woman and her daughter) would wake up really early in the morning and prepare a meal for their family that was spectacular. Is there a way you can pay to go to someone's home for a home cooked meal - like an ethnic meal such as Italian, Portugese or other group that is known to have good food? I was thinking that it would be the coolest thing - more exciting then going to a restaurant.
You might have a better chance if you barter. Another alternative is to select a theme and hire a chef for the night. One drawback is you wouldn't get to meet some great new people (besides the chef), and then there's the question of authenticity, ugh. I think it's time to get a wider and more ethnically diverse circle of friends. That always works well, (for me at least) and an invite soon follows. ; ) Chef ---> http://www.chef4thenite.com/
In old world tradition I do Sunday Suppers at my house every other week. It was a way for me to share my love of food, friends and family and meet new people. People came the first week and were encouraged to bring others.
Now, we've morphed into three locally well known chefs, a wine store owner and a bunch of food hacks (me included) who enjoy a great meal together. It also opens up many more chances to get to see other/traditional cooking at other locations.
Food people begat food people.
that DOES sound like the ultimate food experience.
The only way I have found to do this, is to be very very nice to my friends with food-oriented families. If you look pathetic enough, you will eventually be adopted.
I am thinking that with laws governing commercial kitchens, this would not be possible unless it's an informal arrangement. In other countries I know this does exist. For example dining in a private residence in HK (called Private Room Dining) is all the rage.
In California, there are several Basque style Restaurants. I occasionally get the "Sunday Dinner" experience there.