Food Highlights from Europe
Living in one of the most diverse cities in the country, I’m blessed to be able to always eat and review on local restaurants of different ethnic cuisines. However, while travelling, this is where it gets adventurous since we may not know what the menu even says! I recently was in Europe for my honeymoon and decided to share my favorite eating adventures with everyone, and hopefully help in your European food adventures!
My EuroTrip took me to Paris, Prague, Venice, and Rome as a few cities that we went to. I’m going to share with you my favorite food memories from each of these cities below. Please enjoy and salivate!
Parisian food is known for its rich, creamy cheesy dishes, Parisian hot dogs, rabbit & duck entrees, raclette, crepes, and baked goods (croissants, baguettes, and macarons). However, one of my special food highlights in Paris was enjoying steak and frites (and other sides) at a steak chain, Hippopotamus. They also have other chains of this name across the world. A friend of mine recommended it, and we were so happy to have stumbled upon this restaurant at Val D’Europe shopping mall near our hotel close to Disneyland Paris. For around $25 Euro we got a nice cut of steak and unlimited sides! What’s neat about this place was you can choose from a variety of sauces you can have on the side to dip your steak into. I ended up choosing the pepper sauce, which tasted of red wine, making my steak extra tasty! It was perfectly cooked as well! The sides were decent, but nothing to wow about since the highlight of this meal was really the steak!
Prague was my favorite city for travelling on this trip. Not only did they offer cheap tourist adventures and romantic architecture (castles, gothic bridges, statues, etc.) but they also had the cheapest beer and snacks on this trip. We had cheap street food almost every day of our trip including hot dogs, and my favorite, which was the trdelnik – originally coming from Hungary but made it’s way to be a popular Czech street food. It’s a grilled piece of dough, nice a crunchy, with sugar, cinnamon, and nuts roasted on top. Hollow on the inside and about 6 inches long and about 4 inches wide, this round sweet pastry was delicious, especially when they put nutella on the inside. They make this pastry in front of you as you order it, 50 czech korunas ($2.50-$3 Canadian) each, but with Nutella it’s 60 korunas. Trust me when I say this, eat it with Nutella!
Nothing says Venice like fresh seafood. We had a fun time hunting down the seafood market, only to find out that it had closed for the day. However, around the market, there’s some hidden gem restaurants. We stumbled on Antica Trattoria Poste Vecie, claimed to be the oldest restaurant in Venice since 1500. We sat near the window where we got a nice view of the canal, but the smell of the fish market closing up for the day. However, it’s a quaint restaurant with an extensive seafood restaurant. I truly had one of the best pastas, not mainly because of the seafood (which was cockles and muscles), but because of the fresh homemade tagliatelle pasta with creamy pistachio sauce that was to die for! If only I could make this at home or find a restaurant here with a similar quality. Btw, cockles are similar to clams. In fact, I couldn’t really tell the difference.
Although most tourists will say that Florence, Italy has the top gelato in the country, my highlight was stumbling upon the many gelaterias in Rome! My favorite was a toss up between one that’s a great deal find for a tourist area, and one that was a fancy gelateria shop with minimal crowds but not the cheapest! My cheap/great deal find was Gelateria Old Bridge, located on a street close to The Vatican. For $1.80 Euro you got up to 3 scoops of gelato. Not the most tastiest, but it was definitely a great deal for a tourist area, where I was expecting gelato to cost double the price for less. However because it was 30+ degrees, you have to eat it quick before it melts! Also, come early in the day as there’s huge lineups by the afternoon.
The second favorite of my Rome gelato experience was Gelateria Vice, located a 5 minute walk from The Parthenon on Corso Vittorio Emanuele II. This place was fancy – decked with white crystal walls, and fake snow on the ceiling. I tried their cantaloupe gelato with the watermelon, watermelon being my favorite flavor up to now! Light and airy, the watermelon was refreshing and it felt like I was eating watermelon but with texture! Definitely worth the side trip. Only after I came back, did I read from local foodies that it’s one of the top places to go in Rome for gelato. We were lucky to have passed by and wanted gelato for dessert after dinner.
We also ventured to Siena, Florence, Cinque Terre and Nice for more adventures. However it also was filled mostly with pasta and gelato experience. What I shared above were my favorite memories of the trip. I hope you will enjoy them too!