If you are the type of person who likes to travel, you probably consider the cuisine of the places you visit a cultural event. Many travelers prepare their holidays meticulously and allocate enough time to research and study the local cuisines. They are well aware that if they eat with the locals, they will get a better sense of the culture of their destinations. Experienced and well informed world travelers know that the best food is not always found in the most expensive, more luxurious or even in the most fashionable restaurants. Sometimes, the best culinary experiences are enjoyed in unexpected places located in remote corners. Here are seven recommendations of restaurants around the world, and their most distinctive dishes.
Daiwa Sushi, Tokyo (Japan)
You can eat good sushi in many places, but if you are looking for unique experiences, you must go to the heart of the action. Inside Tokyo’s Tsukiji, one of the largest fish markets in the world, some of the best sushi in the world is prepared and served. Here, you will find Daiwa Sushi, a small local establishment whose chefs move with skill and ease within a really small space. They only open for breakfast, but the offers are absolutely delightful. Their specialty is tai, an exquisite fish that melts in your mouth, which is impossible to eat outside of Japan.
Pest-Buda, Budapest (Hungary)
The small bistro is ideally located in the heart of Buda, the western part of the Hungarian capital, near the famous Buda Castle. It is known for high quality lunches and excellent service. The staff is friendly and speaks English. The restaurant features skillfully prepared Hungarian regional cuisine, and one of their trademark dishes is the beef steak-tartare, seasoned to perfection with just the right amount of chopped onion, which will appeal, particularly, to the most hardened carnivores. If you add a good local wine, this is a true delight for all the senses.
Klimataria, Athens (Greece)
Moussaka is, perhaps, the most celebrated Greek dish, a delight on the palate. We are talking about a delicious meat and vegetable pie, where ground meat is interspersed with luscious layers of eggplant, covered with béchamel sauce and baked in the oven. The best restaurants for moussaka are located in Athens. One of them, Klimataria, is a family tavern near Theatre Square. Their inspiring moussaka can be complemented with a fresh retsina wine and a Greek salad of tomato, feta cheese and kalamata olives. Some nights they have live music. Could we ask for more?
Fish and Chips
Poppies, London (England)
England’s most traditional dish is, as we all know, fast food. It consists of battered and deboned fish, seasoned in various ways and served with fries. Although it is not something you would choose to eat every day, there is no denying how delicious fish and chips can be. If you are in London and want to try the best in town, go to Poppies in Hanbury Street, a charming restaurant that reminds us of the London of the 1950s. You will find quality, variety and excellent service. Pay attention to the fun employee´s uniforms and retro look of the place.
La Pepica, Valencia (Spain)
The city of Valencia is the birthplace of paella, one of the world’s most popular dishes. Experts say that you can only eat good paella in this region of Spain. La Pepica restaurant, founded in 1898, is located in beautiful La Malvarrosa Beach. Illustrious characters such as Ernest Hemingway, Lauren Bacall, Orson Welles, Ava Gardner and the Kings of Spain have enjoyed their amazing paella. Their secret? Good local ingredients, great service and an unbeatable location, only a few feet away from the warm waters of the Mediterranean, which the ancient Romans called Mare Nostrum.
Brandi, Naples (Italy)
It is said that in 1889, during a holiday in Capodimonte, Queen Margherita of Savoy, curious to taste a popular local dish known as pizza, commissioned one from the most famous chef in town. He put his best effort and, to commemorate the anniversary of the unification of Italy, he created a pizza with the colors of the Italian flag: white mozzarella, red tomatoes and green basil. The Margherita pizza was born to honor the Queen. More than a century later, Brandi Pizzeria, opened since 1780, retains its reputation as one of the best places in the world to enjoy this undeniably Italian delicacy.
Go Burger Bar & Grill, New York (United States)
Located in Manhattan’s Upper East Side, Go Burger is a modern and well-staffed restaurant. It is always nice to sit at the walnut counter to enjoy the excellent burgers that have made the restaurant so famous. Any of their specialties will delight the guests because all their burgers are made with 100 percent Angus beef of the highest quality. As a side order, try one of their creative salads, served with their proverbial roasted broccoli to enhance the flavors. ■