Last month we hosted a competition asking ebookers fans to share their food-related travel tips with us. We had some great responses, here we present you with 5 of the best.
The Restaurant: La Prosciutteria Trevi
This is a top food tip for people travelling to Rome who want to avoid the touristy piazzas and get a taste of authentic and organic Tuscan fare. As is often the way we stumbled upon this hole in the wall selling a mouth-watering array of local produce, by chance.
Tucked away on a road just off the Trevi Fountain, the intimate eatery is the sort of place you drop by for a quick glass of wine and emerge from hours later, having settled a very reasonable bill. It must be said the staff were warm and friendly and the food utterly delicious.
Highlights included roasted ham, prosciutto and cappicola all sorts of delicious spreads, pear, olives and of course the best bread you could wish to eat!I would say it was the best meal we had in Rome. Incredible value and a fantastic way to fuel a day of exploring this amazing city!
Recommended by Alexander Paton
The Dish: Som Tam
Beyond its incredible flavours the great thing about som tam is that it can be eaten pretty much everywhere in Thailand. Whether you are looking for cheap street eats or dining out in a smart air-conditioned eatery, it’s a staple dish within Thai cuisine and no trip to Thailand would be complete without sampling this dish that originates from north-eastern part of the country.
I first experienced som tam (translated literally as sour pounded) in Chang Mai. Served as grated, crunchy, crispy, raw green papaya that is mixed with roasted peanuts, dried shrimps, chillis, fish sauce, lime juice, and some secret ingredients that completes the magic.
You can specify how spicy you want the dish to be. Generally foreigners will be offered a somewhat diluted version of the real thing, unless they can convince the chef, usually a local grandmother, you can take the heat! If your mouth is on fire afterwards, I suggest some ripe and sweet fruit such as papaya or mango, as a good antidote and thankfully in Thailand never far from reach.
Recommended by Hamlin Lovell
The Place: Positano, Italy
Positano is a beautiful coastal town set in cliffs of the Amalfi coast, you might recognise it as the destination in the Galaxy advert featuring Audrey Hepburn. I would strongly recommend this as a destination to anyone wanting to experience real Italian culture and food. The rustic scenery and sweeping views of the Atlantic make for the perfect spot to sit amid the steep, narrow streets lined with cafes and traditional trattorias and enjoy Limoncello and freshly cured meats.
My brother used to work at a hostel in Positano and so I went there went on holiday to visit him and he recommended that I try stuffed zucchini flowers. They are that much of a delicacy they tend not to feature on the menu and have to be requested, as it is only available when the flower is in bloom. The flowers are stuffed with ricotta cheese and deep fried while still attached to the baby courgette, also fried, it makes for a wonderful antipasto!
Recommended by Sophie Martine Brook
The epicureans experience: Sushi in Japan
One of the reasons for my taking a trip to Japan was to try sushi first hand in its country of origin, and I am happy to report back that it exceeded all of my expectations!
Upon having a short and surprisingly easy conversation with the waiter, I asked him for some suggestions on a good mix-set of sushi that would enable me to sample a range of what they had to offer. He suggested I try the Nigiri Sushi set.Served as a 12-piece set with different types of sushi, sliced raw fish with a moulded ball of rice underneath, gently wrapped and mixed with tuna, salmon, rice and seaweed. I can honestly say it was one of the best dishes I have ever tried in my life. Combined with a bottle of Asahi beer, it should be on the “to-try” list of any serious foodie.
Recommended by Yeskendir Sergaziyev
The experience: Ironwat tea in the ‘Accursed Mountains’
Ironwat tea is made using the dried leaves and flowers of Sideritis plants and has all kinds of health benefits, assisting with digestive health as well as containing natural antioxidants. Pair this with good company and it’s a must have experience when in Albania or the Balkan region.
You will find Albanian mountain tea readily available in the chic coffee shops of Sofia, however for a more authentic experience I’d highly recommend retreating to the stone houses of the ‘Accursed Mountains’. Here drinking the aromatic herbal tea promises a quintessential Balkan experience, when the golden liquid is poured into tiny tea glasses and stirred with a spoon it feels akin to ringing a small fine bell.
Recommended by Elizabeth Gowing