Every destination has that particular restaurant that tourists go to – a place to savor the local cuisine, discover the culture and history. And when I think of travel, I think about the many different foods I can try. In fact, food is an indispensable part of traveling. It is one of the main reasons I love to travel to far off countries.
Whether you’re seeking to try a juicy steak, a bowl of authentic noodles, the taste of new foods or simple home-cooked meals you are bound to find at least one that you’ll enjoy from these bucket list worthy restaurants around the world (in no particular order):
1. Maido, Lima
Peru is home to Machu Picchu, the Lost City of the Incas, the Nazca Lines, a collection of pre-Columbian giant geoglyphs, Lake Titicaca, the highest navigable lake in the world, and fusion cuisine.
Fans of Japanese food will love a Nikkei food experience in Lima Peru. One restaurant that has been receiving the most attention in recent years for Nikkei cuisine is Maido. It was voted by William Reed Business Media, a United Kingdom media company as one of the world’s top 50 restaurants in 2018.
Nikkei cuisine or Japanese-Peruvian is a cuisine that uses Peruvian ingredients prepared in Japanese-style and aesthetics. Try the tasting menu and make sure you make a reservation in advance.
2. Mum’s Great Comfort Food, Edinburgh
When in Edinburgh you must indulge in a full Scottish breakfast at least once. At Mum’s, you’ll get a homey environment and a hearty breakfast that will not break the bank. Started in 2003 as Monster Mash Cafe, this little eatery got a name change in 2010 and became Mum’s Great Comfort Food. They believe that gourmet should be accessible to everyone.
Full Scottish breakfast consists of black pudding, sausage, egg, bacon, tomato, mushrooms, baked beans, toast, and potato scone.
3. 1884 Restaurante Francis Mallmann, Mendoza
A dining experience at the legendary 1884, a restaurant by Argentine celebrity chef Francis Mallmann is anything but ordinary. Set in an old vineyard (established in 1884) in Mendoza, the Argentine barbecue king started the restaurant in 1996.
At 1884 you’ll be treated with steak cooked over wood fires in clay ovens in a romantic setting. The old bodega (wine cellar) original checkerboard floors are still there, and 12,000 bottles of wine are stored in the venue. Take a look at their 75-page wine list and see if you can find the wine you tasted when you went on a wine tour in Mendoza.
4. Columbia Restaurant, Tampa
You don’t have to travel to Spain to enjoy flamenco dance and dinner. You can fit that in when visiting Ybor City, Tampa’s old town. Florida’s oldest restaurant, Columbia Restaurant has been serving Spanish and Cuban cuisine since 1905. And in 1985 they included the flamenco dance performance every night except on Sundays.
Take a road trip to Tampa if you’re visiting Miami, Orlando or Fort Lauderdale and enjoy a night of Spanish food and dance.
5. Ishikawa, Tokyo
Basically, you won’t find bad food in Tokyo. However, if you want a dining experience in a 3-Michelin star restaurant that serves kaiseki, Ishikawa won’t disappoint. According to Savor Japan, “kaiseki is a traditional Japanese tasting course comprised of many small, tea ceremonies, but over the centuries this culinary tradition has become the pinnacle of Japanese haute cuisine.” https://savorjapan.com/contents/more-to-savor/kaiseki-cuisine-japans-artful-culinary-tradition-explained/
Closed on Sundays and public holidays, Ishikawa holds only a small group of people each night. There’s a counter that seats seven and four private rooms. It’s expensive but will be a Japanese food experience of a lifetime.
6. La Colombe, Cape Town
Located in a vineyard overlooking Constantia Wine Valley, False Bay, and Hout Bay is South Africa’s most iconic restaurant, La Colombe.
Enjoy the spectacular views while you dine and wine. Go for the lunch tasting menu and let the sommelier tell you more about the local wine that pairs with the food. Even a vegetarian will find this place satisfying.
7. Eleven Madison Park, New York City
There are 24,000 restaurants in Manhattan New York City, but the newly renovated Eleven Madison Park is the ultimate bucket list worthy restaurant in New York City. Enjoy the eight, or 10-course tasting menu served in style in the dining room. Or choose the less pricey tasting menu at the bar, enjoy the cocktail or select your wine from the extensive wine list with 4,000 different types of wine.
Eleven Madison Park is a New York institution that has consistently made the list of top restaurants in the world.
J.R.R. Tolkien said, “If more of us valued food and cheer and song above hoarded gold, it would be a merrier world.”