Belfast Telegraph

Got a taste for travel? Indulge it with global cuisine

How many great holiday memories revolve around enjoying local food and drink served in a pretty taverna, an uber-chic restaurant or even a roadside stall in some far-flung destination?

Food and drink are amongst the top tourist attractions, wherever you go, so bon appetit!

1. Where else in the world? Could there be anywhere better to enjoy a dish than the spot where it was invented? Who wouldn’t love a glossy Sachertorte served in elegant style in Vienna’s super-swish Hotel Sacher? And where better to sip a Manhattan than in Manhattan?

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2. Get fresh on holiday! A stroll around the local marketplace will give you real insight into the character of your destination – and may be the starting point of conversation with some local characters. Ask their advice on where to taste some of the great food you’ll see laid out on those tempting stalls or, if you go self-catering, take some back to cook and enjoy.

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3. Hot hot hot! Sometimes you've got to go for it. Ital cuisine is a natural method of preparing Jamaican food developed by Rastafarians in support of a healthy lifestyle. It involves no red meat and a celebration of the fresh fruits and vegetables that come straight from the earth. Typical of Ital cuisine is also the absence of salt as an additive to dishes, with flavours derived from a wealth of herbs and spices. Ital food is Jamaica’s take on vegetarian cuisine.

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4. Some Madeira, m’dear? Synonymous with its birthplace, Madeira is a perfect holiday pick-me-up. Enjoy a glass in one of the island’s tranquil cafe and you’re ready for the next round of sight-seeing.

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5. Try some Thai. So you think you know Thai cuisine? Perhaps you do, but we’re willing to bed that sampling Thai street food will be something completely – and wonderfully – different! Make a night of your street food tour, enjoying a different course at each stall you come across!

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6. Cruise cuisine. Cruising is a great choice for those who love to dine in style and the evening meal is a social as well as a culinary highlight of the day. Larger ships offer a choice of options, from casual to ultra-fine dining, often with menus curated by well-known and highly-respected international chefs. Remember to book ahead for those more intimate, special onboard restaurants - even before sailing, if you want to secure a table for a particular celebration date. And, if wining and dining is your thing, talk to your travel agent about extra value food and beverage packages, bookable in advance.

7. Get in the groove. In Turks & Caicos they know that great food and drink deserve to be celebrated - and they do it in style. Look out for the local fish fry programme and prepare to enjoy a night of music, dancing, eating and drinking!

8. Get a taste for DIY. Many travellers are now adding a short cookery course to their holiday plans. An afternoon with a local chef can send you home brim-ful of ideas, and with the skills need to re-create some of your favourite dishes.

9. Go beyond the obvious. Think USA and you probably think fast food, but fast can also deliver great service and fantastic tastes, even in casual settings. And if you want to push the boat out, discover fine dining in supreme luxury in the great cities of the US.

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10. Give it a go. Sometimes foreign food can be intimidating. Try whatever the locals are having. You may find you like it and, if not, well, it may give you something to talk about around the dinner table back home!

Get a taste for culinary global adventures at Belfast Telegraph Holiday World at TEC this month, starting Friday, January 17.

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