The longer you travel, the more you start to collect personal favorites about destinations. Favorite cities to visit, hotels to stay at, places to eat. I don’t consider myself a foodie. I am not interested in 10 course meals with small plates, leave you feeling hungry and have a large bill at the end. For me, I just like good food, you know what I mean? Read on if you’d like to know about my 8 Favorite Places To Eat Around The World.
Sometimes when you’re traveling, it can be overwhelming to know where to eat. Typically the way I look for restaurants in new places is asking the locals, through a friend’s recommendation or searching yelp. I like to know about a place before I go, versus just trying some place random. (Although I do that from time to time too!) I have a running list of my 8 Favorite Places Around The World that I legit day dream about. Some of these places I have been to too many times to count. Others I have been only once but would go back to the city where it is JUST to eat there again. I think you get the point, so let’s get into it.
In no particular order…
Chicago, IL: Sunda
Sunda is a trendy Asian fusion / Sushi restaurant in downtown Chicago. My friend Jennifer is actually who introduced Brian and I to it, and omg I am so glad she did. To start Sunda is a really fun environment but without being so trendy that you can’t get a table. Their menu is huge so there are lots of options even if you don’t like sushi, but that is my favorite thing there. They actually just opened a Sunda in Nashville so you have two chances to try it out!
What to order: Spicy “Tail of Two Tunas” and The Great White nigiri
Amsterdam, Netherlands: Castell BAR-becue
I think out of international places, Amsterdam is where I have visited the most. It is the first overseas trip I ever took with Brian and is a city I love going again and again. If I had to pick a favorite restaurant overall, it would be hard but my choice would probably be Castell BAR-becue You guys…THIS PLACE IS THE BEST. Their menu is fairly simple which is part of what makes it great. Your best bet is to either get the chicken or a steak, which comes with a potato that has some sort of magic sauce with it. Trying to explain it sounds boring but it cannot overstated how amazing it is. The staff is lovely and they serve food late. Casual setting in a dark room with fireplaces. Book your flight now.
What to Order: Personal favorite is the filet. Brian loves the chicken.
*Transeau Travel Tip* When you are traveling and eat somewhere amazing, make a contact of the name, address and what you got to eat in the contacts in your phone. That way if you forget but remember what city you were in, you can find it!
Venice, Italy: Dal Moro’s Fresh Pasta To Go
If you are lucky enough to have been to Italy already, you know the food there is no joke. It is hard to have a bad meal in that country. Everything is so fresh, a plain tomato is a religious experience. While visiting Venice in 2013, we kept seeing people eating pasta out of Chinese takeaway containers, sitting outside eating pasta. By the sheer amount of people with these containers, you know I had to stalk someone and see where it was from. Here enters Dal Moro’s Fresh Pasta To Go. I want you to picture if Chipotle was family owned, tiny, and served fresh to order pasta to you in Italy. What I mean by that is, you choose your noodle (WHICH THEY ARE MAKING FOR YOU RIGHT THEN AND THERE) choose your sauce and any toppings if you want some. You guys, I have recommended this place to SO many people. Not only is it absolutely delicious, it is also relatively cheap. I think we ended up eating there three times no joke.
What to order: Honestly, you can’t go wrong here. Ask who’s working their personal favorite combination and go with that.
New York, NY: Serendipity 3
I am not going to suggest proper food for you in New York. Some of the world’s best food can be found there, and since I am not a foodie type, I don’t want to recommend anything. I have had some incredible meals there, but something that sticks out to me when I think of New York is dessert from Serendipity 3. You have probably heard of Serendipity before. Years back their frozen hot chocolate was one of Oprah’s Favorite Things. (You read that right, frozen hot chocolate.) Their menu is massive with tons of dessert options. They also serve dinner but let’s be real, this is not what we are here for. My favorite dessert here is the Cinnamon Fun Sundae, which is basically an apple pie with a sundae on top. (Not Whole-30 Approved, lol) There is usually a wait but it is worth it. Hard to top dessert here on a summer night in the city followed by a walk to Central Park.
What to Order: Cinnamon Fun Sundae with caramel ice cream
London, England: Noorjahan II
When it comes to Indian food, England has it locked down. (This is coming from someone who has travelled to India!) I’m not sure what it is, but some of the best Indian meals in my life I have had in England. Originally recommended by our friend Jonny, Noorjahan II is a place I think about often. (I am unclear why it is NoorJahan II. Is there a NoorJahan I? Who knows.) Located in Paddington, this little joint serves up some magical dishes. There have been times Brian and I have eaten there two nights in a row. It is located across the street from a very quintessential London pub called The Victoria. So after dinner you can grab a cheeky pint and sit by the fire. (Or outside if it’s warm out!)
What to Order: Butter Chicken, Peshwari Naan, Mango Lassi
Tulum, Mexico :Ziggy Beach
Tulum is one of the hot destinations right now and it’s easy to see why. You have the perfect mix of beach meets jungle, new age wellness and trendy restaurants. When Brian and I went to Tulum we had some beautiful meals and some superb cocktails. But if you’re going to Tulum, you most likely already know about these places. Something we ate nearly everyday for lunch, and I would argue to say are some of the best of, are fish tacos. Forget the mezcal cocktails at Gitano, get your butt over to Ziggy’s Beach Bar. It’s super chill, great place to spend the day at the beach, good drinks and again, the tacos.
what to order: fish tacos. there is a tower of tuna dish as well. both amazing
Capri, Italy: Ristorante Longano Da Tarantino
I am going to keep this one sweet and simple. Capri is a beautiful island in Italy which has so many great places to eat. (I’ve actually written an entire guide to Capri which you can find here) I made it my own personal journey to eat as many dishes of ravioli as humanly possible a couple summers ago in Italy. I think I have found the best one. This restaurant is quiet and little and features a massive hot stone pizza oven overlooking the cliffs of Capri. Wind your ways through the alleys to get here, it’s worth it.
What to order: Ravioli Alla Caprese
Los Angeles, California: Sugarfish
I spend a lot of time in LA and one of the best aspects of that city are the food options. There is a place to eat for everyone. So many price ranges, dietary options and types of cuisine to choose from. I feel like each year is just gets better and better too! Something LA has zero shortage of in LA are Sushi places. But I do have a favorite which is Sugarfish. Sugarfish serves traditional sushi, so you won’t find your spicy tuna rolls here. What you will find is a modern take on the traditional omakases, where you are bought specific items off the menu. The core menu stays the same but does offer daily specials. In my opinion for the quality of fish you are getting, the price cannot be beat. We go every time we are in LA and it never disappoints. It does stay busy, so try to go at an off time, like right at opening or near closing during the week and you won’t have to wait. I could do an entire post on places in to eat in LA so let me know if you’d like that!
What to Order: The Trust Me, or if you’re really hungry The Nozawa
If you are busy collecting stamps in your passport, be sure you’re also collecting business cards of places you love to eat. There is something so cool about returning to restaurants you love or sending people you care about to eat your favorite dishes. I hope you’ve enjoyed reading my 8 Favorite Places To Eat Around The World.
Let me know if you’ve eaten at any of these places, but also share with me your favorite places to eat and where they are! I am always looking for new places to try.