Cuy: Guinea pig, the Andean speciality. Usually reserved for fiestas, weddings or special occasions, it is not cheap and a big honour if offered to you. There are various places to eat it in Cuenca, including on the street in certain barrios, but the best place is definitely in the house of a newly made friend.
Chancho: A Quichua word for “pig,” it comes in various forms – sometimes spit-roasted, other times with the skin hardened using a blowtorch, or cut into lumps and fried in a big pan. Markets are probably the best places to eat this (Gualaceo in particular), provided you are strong of stomach and nerve.
Mote: Omnipresent yet tasteless, mote consists of kernels of maize boiled into submission over hours and then served with “aji,” the local condiment made from chilli peppers, tree tomatoes and cilantro, to give it some flavour. The best kind is “mote sucio” (“dirty mote”), friend with pieces of bacon and potato. The restaurants in San Joaquin are good places to sample this.
Llapingachos: Superb. Essentially just potato cakes, but manage to taste fifty times better than anything your local chipper has to offer. Why? The secret ingredient seems to be pig fat. Perhaps we are starting to see a trend here…
Tamales, humitas, quimbolitos: If not pig then corn. These three are all made from ground maize, then wrapped in banana leaves and steamed, and taste great. The exact difference between them is a little imprecise (there is more to it though, I am assured, than just a different wrapping technique), but tamales are savoury, the others sweet.
Zhumir: The local rotgut, made inevitably from sugar cane, it can therefore be classified as “aguardiente.” But unlike some of the locally produced moonshine, this is devoid of any redeeming flavour, is cheap, nasty and strong as hell. A one-way ticket to a punch in the mouth.
Beirut’s most cutting edge neighbourhood. Awash with artists, writers, musicians, film-makers and the like. Think Hoxton if you will. Rue Gourard is the main throughfare and is packed with eclectic bars, cafes, galleries, international restaurants and jazz venues. The nightlife is usually more low key than the Rue Monot but on a weekend this area can get just as busy. During the day it’s a lovely place to take a stroll and people watch.
Rue Gourard is the main artery of Gemayzeh
The Amnesty International café, right in the heart of Temple Bar, is an oasis of calm (not to mention intellect and compassion) in an area dominated by overpriced restaurants and “pubs” stuffed with stag nights and rugby fans. Good strong and cheap coffee, tasty food, great reading material and much more besides, this place sticks out like a sane thumb.
A no-frills vegetarian restaurant situated in the Old Town. There are usually only a couple of choices but the food is always delicious and plentiful, Vegan friendly too. Free bread and coffee are provided, they are fine about you bringing your own drink (alcoholic or not). Meals work out at about a fiver a head which is very cheap for Stockholm.
Stora Nygatan 11, Gamla Stam
Learn Khmer cooking! Learn how to make fish amok or lok lak beef - all that yummy Khmer food. A visit to the local wet market is also included. Unlike Thailand, there are hardly any cookery schools in Cambodia. It's well worth visiting this one and it's a nice little restaurant too.
No. 298, Group 8, 20 Ousephea Village, Svaypor Commune, Battambang District, Battambang Province (near Angkor Hotel)
This is an olive oil shop and restaurant in the Old Town of Nice. The owner is one of the most enthusiastic we have ever met. We had no idea how much variety there could be in the taste of the oils and how much the different olive oils can bring out the taste of the food. My advocado starter was amazing and my new hubby also loved his goats cheese starter. I had lasagne and he had rabbit for the main course which were great too. And the tiramisu to polish it all all, fantastic. It's such a friendly place, but we would have never had gone if it hadn't been recommended to us by Matt and Gayle at Nice Pebbles who rented our apartment to us. If you're in Nice, you so must go to Olivieria. It's not to be missed.
Rue de Collet, Vieux Nice
Because if you don't read it and you are moderately naive like me, 'Happy Curry' is just another colourful south-east Asian turn of phrase....rather than an opium & pot laced journey into neurosis and paranoia, culminating in a night sleeping with a knife under the pillow, keys stuffed in the top of the bedroom door and the contents of my backpack on the floor in order to wake me (like I ever fell asleep) when the cooks were going to come in and steal my kidneys. Not recommended eating by accident.
Surprisingly on the main menu of a Lonely Planet recommended hostel.
A 15 minute taxi ride over the pass from Fethiye, the tranquil and scenic Kaya valley is well worth taking time to visit if you are tired with all the hustle and bustle. The main attraction is the "Ghost Village", a ruined village that was deserted during the war (made famous in Louis De Berniere's "Bird Without Wings"). There are plenty of restaurants around if you want to get some hearty authentic Turkish cuisine, or just fancy a drink and relaxation.
Kaya is about 15 minutes in a taxi from Fethiye over the mountain pass. If you fancy a walk it will take a good hour - look out for the ancient cliff dwellings carved into the mountainside on the road out of Fethiye.
Friends Restaurant is a non-profit restaurant run by former street children who are being provided with training. It's part of Mith Samlanh Friends, the Cambodian arm of Friends International. The food is good, the service is friendly, and your bill helps to fund Friends' charitable aims. Go to the shop and gallery while you're there.
House 215, Street 13, Phnom Penh
(+855) 12 802 072
Lazy Gecko's Cafe makes great food, both Western and Cambodian, and is a good spot for meeting other travellers. On Saturday nights, they run a minibus to the nearby JCA Orphanage, an orphanage for kids who've lost their parents to HIV related illnesses. The kids are always absolutely delighted to get visitors, and they put on a traditional dance show for you and invite you to share a meal with them. The trip is free, but take along a donation (cash, or things like school equipment, clothes etc). A great night is guaranteed for both you and the kids.
Phnom Penh - Lazy Gecko's is on the main backpackers' drag by Boeng Kak lake.
Ha, who wanna have good craic? All of you, I guess! :) Ok, here's my advice for a splendid Friday night: first warm-up at Crowley's - best Guinness in town and from time to time good folk-musik. Then stroll to the HorseShoe - brilliant staff behind the bar ;-) and the guests in front of the bar (later under the bar) are the best people you can meet in town! After hammering a few pints you feel absolutely happy when you enter Ryan's Bar! Greetz to Finnbar! ;-) Ryan's bar may be during the summer mostly overcrowded but this keeps you up and you cannot stumble down! They often have good live acts on stage. So, and when you feel a bit hungry after this exhausting session then go on the other side of the road to Effes Snack bar - best burgers in town! Hope to see you all again soon! :)
Crowley's in Henry Street, the rest in Main Street.
My money saving idea - lunchtimes on the Alps can cost you between £8 and £25 per day! If you're on a budget ski holiday then make the most of your half-board chalet. 1. drag yourself down to breakfast. 2. add several extra slices of french bread, ham & cheese to your plate 3. create a selection of ham and cheese rolls 4. when no one is looking, take out your serviette and wrap around (discreetly) your freshly made rolls, and hide quickly in a pocket or bag... et voila, enjoy on an uncrowded rock, with a view of your choice... ALL FOR FREE!
Wonderful, family-run neighbourhood Greek restaurant. Fresh fish and meat are cooked on an open charcoal grill and there is a great selection of starters. This place is better than many tavernas in Greece and is very reasonably priced. Try the lamb chops or any of the fish/sea food dishes.
122 Junction Road
020 7272 0318
Tufnell Park or Archway tube (Northern Line). Also on 134 and 390 bus routes.
Lovely street in Clerkenwell lined with independent shops and very good restaurants (Exmouth Market's the home of Moro, a restaurant that kick-started the regeneration of the street ten years ago).
When I strolled down recently there was a new outdoor food and craft market. I was very very pleased to see that Neals Yard Cheese had a stall as usually you have to trek to Covent Garden or Borough market for their cheeses. Was lovely to be able to buy some really good, and not ridiculously priced food but wihout the business of some of London's other markets. I think the market's only there on Friday and Saturday; a lovely way to while away a weekend afternoon, especially as there are lots of tasting opportunities and a really good mix of well-known companies and tiny cottage industries.
Off Rosebery Avenue near Farringdon Road.
Nearest Tube is Farringdon
website is www.exmouthmarket.co.uk
Just out of Melbourne. The best place in Oz for seeing Australian wildlife. The Healsville Santuary. Worth seeing just for the Tasmanian devil. Afterwards walk down Victoria Street. Richmond for great Vietnamese cuisine.
Modern Vietnamese restaurant and bar. The bar is great if you want a cocktail/beer and some nibbles, try the crispy squid. The restaurant has a outdoor terrace filled with chinese laterns and has very reasonable beautifully presented food. Try the sticky ribs/scallops on papaya salad.
Star Anise is a relaxed fine dining restaurant with chef David Coomer consistently creating exceptional cuisine. Some of it influenced by south-east Asia and all of it outstanding.
The degustation menu is fantastic giving you a little more than a taste of his favourite items on the menu. Ma hor a well known favourite with a slice of pineapple, caramalised duck, seared scallop with a mint, chilli and coriander dressing. Licorice ice cream is another established favourite but if it's not on the menu it's worth a trip back.
The wine list is dominated by Australian wines but there are generally a few international gems as well.
Fabulous food, delicious wine, great staff and buzzy atmosphere make this my favourite restaurant in Brisbane. Go!!! (you will need to book).
No Brisbane visit is complete without a 'late Breakfast'. Swing by the Brekky Creek Hotel to sample its signature steaks, seafood and wide range of beers, including XXXX from the wood which puts its keg-raised little sister to shame....
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