One of the things I like most about traveling is stuffing my face with the local cuisine. These are some of my favorite places:
I can’t say enough good things about the food in New Orleans. One of my favorite, if not top places to fill my food hole. One of the best places to find Creole and Cajun cooking, the perfect blend of heat and spice, but not too overpowering to the point you are crying or can’t taste the rest of your food. Shrimp and grits: yes. Etouffee: check. Gumbo: yes please! If that’s not your thing— I get it I guess, but truly you are missing out!— New Orleans also serves up a diverse seafood menu as well. However, the small crustacean, crayfish, reigns supreme. They’re everywhere and for good reason. They are delicious. Though I wasn’t brave enough to eat the whole thing like most people told me to. And if you have as big a sweet tooth as me, then New Orleans has you covered there as well. Beignets will surely make you gain a few pounds. Why? Because you will be eating so many of them they are so good. The Famous Café du Monde is open 24 hours a day so you can eat them for breakfast, lunch, AND dinner. Also pralines are so ubiquitous they gave them away at my hotel.
Not only was this one of the most unique and beautiful places I’ve ever been to, it also has killer cuisine. The rumors about the food in Italy? All true. Seriously. The pizza is THE BEST I’ve ever had in my life. And I’ve had some good za in my time. One thing to take note of is that the pizza toppings aren’t like they are here in the US. I didn’t see any pepperoni anywhere that I ate. Which wasn’t a big deal, I just thought it was interesting. The pasta was delicious. Lasagna almost as good as my mom’s. (Hi mom!) Also of note was the size of the restaurants. I think my bedroom is bigger than one of the places I ate at. Which wasn’t a bad thing, just comical when the waiter literally had to squeeze in between the different tables. The food was good though!
I feel like this is cheating a little bit. Seriously, the food in Italy is GOOD.
My mouth is drooling just thinking about it. At first I was worried about the food being heavy and greasy. And while it can be at times, it is also very delicious. You haven’t had a gyro until you’ve eaten one in Greece. I thought I had, but I was WRONG! Stuffed Grape leaves are another of my favorites. The tomatoes tasted like they came from Mount Olympus itself. So needless to say, my misgivings about Greek food were totally proven wrong.
As one of THE cities in the US, New York has some of the most diverse cuisine I’ve seen in one place. From pizza in Little Italy to Dim Sum in China Town to the small bakeries in Brooklyn, you can eat a different international cuisine for each meal of the day. And don’t be afraid of the many street food vendors. They may look a little questionable, and who knows maybe they were, but they serve up some mean dogs and pretzels. Ugh the soft pretzels! If you know me, I am a pretzel aficionado. (Do those even exist?) I got one, sometimes two, a day! New York is also where I tried duck tongue, one of the strangest things I’ve ever eaten. And now I know what it’s like to make out with the Aflac mascot… Also, don’t forget to try Nathan’s Hotdogs out on Coney Island. Definitely worth the trip out there.
Special Mention: Racine, Wisconsin
Now, there’s not a whole lot to this little town. It’s quaint and it’s where my mother is from. And while it may not seem like it has much to offer, it totally does. There is an honest to God Cheese Castle just outside of town. Seriously. A cheese store shaped like a castle. The cheese curds are delicious and I can eat them by the bagful, teeth squeaking away. Also, Racine is home to the little known Kringle. A Scandinavian pastry usually with a sweet filling and topping. My favorite is the chocolate one from O&H Bakery. So good I ate two of them in a weeks’ time. And these aren’t small desserts by any means…
So there they are, some of my favorite food destinations so far. I hope to expand on this list in the future, and also hope I don’t gain 500 lbs doing it! But that wouldn’t be the worst thing in the world would it?