Are you planning to travel across Europe? Not sure where to start your search? While some people may base their itinerary around historical or famous sights, we foodies research the best places to eat and drink to enhance our travel experience. It might be tempting to ask, “Which cities are most food-friendly in Europe?” Because of their rich traditions, France and Italy are the top choices for food in Europe. In this Europe’s Eating Guide, we will provide the list of the best European foodie cities that you should definitely visit in 2023.
This expression, “A way to a man’s heart is through the stomach”, isn’t just for men. It applies to all travelers. Visitors are drawn to a destination’s unique culinary offerings. It completes the experience. Some travelers have visited a destination just to enjoy the local cuisine. So, let’s find out together what are the top destinations for gastronomical holidays.
We all know Milan to be notorious for its Fashion industry, but the city boasts with its culinary heritage too. Milan is like New York. It’s a modern culinary hub that attracts the best chefs from all over Europe and beyond. This place is a delight for both tourists and locals who enjoy experimental and avant-garde food.
Milan is not the place to go if you are looking for traditional Italian cuisine. Instead, it is a city known for its innovative chefs and trendy dishes like Risotto Alla Milanese.
Langosteria, Dongio and Ratana are just a few of the must-visit restaurants in Milan. Milan is home to some of the most renowned gelato shops in the world, such as Gelataria Paganelli, Il Massimo di Gelato and Gelato Giusto.
The South is the best place to eat in France. Provence has earned its place in European cuisine and is our first choice for the Top 10 Foodie Destinations. The Tapenade and olive pate are must-trys when visiting Provence. They come in both green or black. You must also try Soccabread. It is made with chickpeas and pepper and herbs de Provence. To complete your picnic, add the salade nicoise along with a loaf olive bread. Summer is the best time to enjoy provencal cuisine, especially if you have a great wine from the area.
San Sebastian, Spain
San Sebastian offers a wide range of dining options. Famous pintxos can be eaten on foot or in a rotation. But there are also wonderful sit-down restaurants which have earned the city the most Michelin stars per head. However, a starred meal is just one part of San Sebastian’s culinary iceberg. Locals love to eat traditional Basque cuisine using fresh produce from local markets, such as Casa Urola or Astelena 1997. Grills are a mainstay at the table. This includes the Patxikuenea txuleta (steak) or Elkano’s perfectly charred turbot. This culinary experience is best enjoyed with a mixture of the small, medium and large.
The Italian food culture has been promoted in this coastal city more than any other. While most people are familiar with Neapolitan pizzas, the city’s food culture has helped many other dishes to rise to the top of the international culinary charts. Neapolitan Ragu, a classic recipe of tomato and meat sauce served on large Paccheri pasta tubes. Creamy buffalo mozzarella is also a staple of the Naples diet. Sfogliatelle pastries can be found in many cafes around the city.
There are many pastry shops in Naples that stay open until late at night. There are many pizza shops right by the beach. You’ll find many restaurants and bars in the vicinity of Piazza Dei Martiri.
The list would mean nothing without Lyon. Lyon is the home of French haute cuisine. Paul Bocuse, the chef of the century according to some, was the city’s most prominent son. But many locals are equally passionate about their craft. The same passion for great produce can be seen in the baker, fishmonger, and customers at all the restaurants in town. Lyon’s proximity is ideal for selecting the best and freshest ingredients.
Lyonnaise cuisine is best enjoyed at a Bouchon. This type of restaurant sticks to classic dishes such as French onion soup, steaks with Lyonnaise potatoes, crayfish grgratin and thick-hewn boards filled with charcuterie and cheese. The food is rich in sauces, flavours, and filling. It’s delightful homecooked-style food. Lyon restaurants offer exquisite, delicate plates that look like miniature modern art creations.
Europe is home to many amazing food destinations and best European foodie cities. While many European cuisines are well-known internationally, it is still a great experience to taste the food directly from the source. Tasting the local cuisine is one of our main activities whenever we visit Europe for different purposes several times a year and we don’t think this pattern will change once ETIAS system comes into force next year. It used to be difficult to navigate Europe as a vegetarian several years ago. But it is no longer a problem. You can still taste the local cuisines and enjoy their unique flavors.