If there is one motto that I live by, it is ‘eat well and travel often’. It’s impossible to have a significant travel experience without exploring the food connected to your perspective destination. Food has the ability to awaken the senses and is many times the connecting force that brings us all together no matter where we’re from. I would argue that you can go just about anywhere in the world and find a satisfying dish. But there are some places where the food trumps satisfying and is downright unforgettable. Check out my suggestions for some of the best foodie destinations.
If at any point you see a list of great foodie destinations that doesn’t include “N’awlins”, trust me, it’s not legit. The “Big Easy” prides itself on serving up some of the most decadent dishes your taste buds can handle from muffuletta sandwich’s and oysters rockefeller to po’boys and beignets. The dishes are derived from the city’s various cultural influences that include French, Creole, African and Caribbean. It’s also a must to wet your whistle with a famous Hurricane or Sazerac cocktail. The food is a reflection of the city’s rich history and every dish has a story to tell.
Just a hop, skip and a jump from Milan and Florence lies what some would call a foodie paradise. This city, located in the Emilia-Romagna region is best known for it’s tortellini (pasta), parmigiano reggiano (cheese), cured meats and of course bolognese sauce. Wine lovers can indulge in a Lambrusco or Pignoletto made from grapes grown in the area. It’s nickname “LaGrassa” (which means ‘the fat’) pretty much gives visitors an idea of the culinary experience they’re in for upon arrival.
This Latin American country has put itself on the map as one of the best culinary destinations in the world and it has six world travel awards to prove it. With Lima (the country’s capital) at the center focus, this area is bringing in new chefs that are revamping centuries old recipes that were once lost. Dishes like quinotto (quinoa and risotto), ceviche (fish cured in citrus juices with spices) and lomo saltado (stir fry with sirloin onions and tomatoes) are just a few of the tantalizing dishes that draw visitors.
Johannesburg, South Africa
Johannesburg is quickly working to “one up” Cape Town as a place for foodies to explore due to its melting pot of people from various backgrounds and its affordable and growing fine dining scene. The diversity of “Jo’Burg” undoubtedly shows up in how its native dishes are prepared. Whether it’s breweries and bars, unique desserts like malva pudding and melkert or traditional dishes like chakalaka, this city has a culinary pulse that is strong and thriving.
There’s more to consume in this city than just sushi. Tokyo has over 200 Michelin-Star restaurants (more than any other place in the world), but it’s the street food that really brings the heat because it’s cheap and just as delicious. Dishes like the savory yakitori (grilled chicken skewers) are a must-try along with the extremely popular takoyaki (minced octopus, onions and ginger rolled into a doughy ball and baked). Be sure to head over to Tokyo’s central fish market which has moved to the man-made island of Toyosu and participate in the live fish auctions.
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