Summer is a time for travel, whether it’s island hopping, beach lounging or city exploring, and one of the joys of visiting new places is discovering their food and drink culture. What’s better than an Aperol in the sunshine, some antipasti with a view or fresh street food from a hidden gem trader a local tipped you off about? Whether it’s a swanky bar or a delicious treat for pennies, we have scoured Europe to bring you some hot tips of tasty treats and places you should try, next time you’re in the neighbourhood…
We’re often asked about Ibiza, and the island truly is brimming with great places to try. If you have children in tow, a lovely place for lunch is La Paloma, a bohemian oasis of calm surrounded by citrus trees. The food is fabulous, unpretentious but elegant, and there’s a small playground for little ones to explore whilst adults sit back and relax. Seafood fans should try Cala Salada for an impressive array of fresh fish dishes and huge paella pans. Reasonably priced and with a relaxed atmosphere, this restaurant is popular with locals and as such, in high season gets very busy, so we recommend getting the bus or arriving early to secure a parking spot.
Regulars to the island will have seen local delicacy ‘Flao’ on menus everywhere – like a drier version of a baked cheesecake and usually flavoured with mint and/ or aniseed, it’s definitely worth tasting. For a more sophisticated menu, try El Chiringuito . Situated on a beautiful sandy beach in an elegantly refined setting, this stunning restaurant has upmarket dishes, including whole fish and oysters, but is relaxed, friendly and sociable. Children will love it too, due to the extensive and thoughtful children’s menu, and parents can relax watching younger visitors enjoy the beach.
Palermo, Sicily, is a food lover’s paradise. There are far too many places to mention, we could do a blog on Palermo alone, but a gem that’s sure to whet your appetite is Bisso Bistrot – popular with locals and friendly to the wallet, this little restaurant is great for those with special dietary needs too, with vegan and gluten free options and a chef that loves to please diners. It’s a modern but chilled out location too, definitely one to check out! Or if you’re looking for something a bit different, try Eat With Fulvio – this friendly Supper Club is great for solo travellers or those wishing to meet new people, plus Fulvio is an excellent host, the food it fantastic and you can even learn from this local about shopping for and preparing the best Sicilian ingredients.
When thirsty in Athens, the hottest cocktail bar right now is The Clumsies, which currently proudly sits at number 7 on the World’s Best Bars List. For dinner we’d recommend Cookoovaya, where innovative chefs use fresh, seasonal ingredients to make Greek cuisine in a friendly setting.
Paris is always in our hearts and as all food lovers know, the scene there is sublime. A highlight for Sunday mornings is a wander through Marche Raspail, an open air food market popular year-round, offering everything from fresh produce to rotisserie chicken and patisserie. Bar Josephine at the Lutetia Hotel is an Art Deco haven, a beautiful frescoed setting where tuxedoed mixologists create stunning cocktails for some of the chicest clientele in Paris.
Next time you’re in Manchester, we highly recommend heading to the Asia Bar at The Ivy Spinningfields, where Asian ingredients are used by expert mixologists to create deliciously different cocktails. A favourite from the menu is the Smoked Plum Boulevardier (a smoky twist on a classic – Kishinamien umeshu mum sake, Hibiki Harmony, Kamm & Son’s English Aperitivo and plum bitters) – delicious!
Gothenburg is gaining in popularity for city breaks, perhaps due in part to its laid back atmosphere and lovely canal ways.
The Lindholmen Street Food & Design Market is open every Saturday from 12-5pm and has a wonderful array of street food stalls that sit alongside contemporary arts and crafts sellers, making it a great place for a wander and a casual lunch. Try everything from fresh fish to gourmet burgers, local beers to an ever changing list of specials.
Lisbon has been a star destination for a while and is still going strong. Perfect for weekends away, there is so much to discover here. Lovers of food markets should head to Mercado da Ribiera Time Out where visitors can graze on a variety of Portuguese specialities and international dishes, all prepared freshly (hot tips are ‘Monte Mar’ and ‘Henrique Sa Pessoa’). Serious foodies should book well in advance at previously mentioned chef Pessoa’s flagship restaurant Alma, a Michelin-starred hotspot with tasting menus, an incredible drinks list and excellent people watching!
We’re always on the lookout for new places so for any questions, to share your hot tips or if you’d like to discuss putting together an itinerary, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.