Europe is a foodie heaven, so we’ve compiled a taste trail guide your taste buds will thank you for (but your waistline might not).
Bourne & Hollingsworth Buildings, Clerkenwell
Seemingly lifted straight from the pages of a Tatler magazine, this special spot sets the benchmark for London brunching. Pristine whitewashed floor boards are adorned with an eclectic assortment of beautiful stuffed armchairs, wrought iron garden furniture and large comfy basket chairs giving the overall impression that you’ve just come down to breakfast in an eccentric aristocrat’s country manor.
The menu comprises a selection of traditional English dishes with a touch of adventure (think: tropical banana and coconut pancakes accompanied by a very English side of clotted cream and berries) paired with renowned posh British service. The establishment prides itself on offering the service of an exclusive member’s club without the hefty price tag or pretentious guest list.
We recommend: The Lobster Royale – whole grilled lobster tail, spinach and hollandaise sauce with a bottomless selection of Bellinis, Bloody Marys and bubbles.
Image courtesy of Bourne & Hollingsworth Buildings
The Renaissance Tuscany Il Ciocco, Tuscany
Watch out Antonio Carlucci! After taking part in the Le Salette gastronomic experience you’ll be able to make gnocchi that could put this world-class Italian chef out of business! This personalised private masterclass of grand proportions will leave you with an envy-inducing culinary repertoire that will elevate your next dinner party to a league of its own.
The entire experience is devoted to your tastebuds, starting with a menu tailored to include your favourite fare – ensuring you’re only learning about dishes you’ll actually want to recreate in the future. Buddied up with a chef, you’ll peruse the local markets for the freshest local produce before learning how to whip up a three-course Italian feast worthy of your new white apron and chef’s hat.
We recommend: Leave your schedule open because the experience culminates with a personal Maitre D’ serving your creations over a romantic candlelit table setting, paired with local wine and picture-perfect views of the Serchio Valley that you won’t want to hurry away from.
Image courtesy of Renaissance Tuscany Il Cicco
Those in-the-know don’t go to Da Vito for the pizza, so we’ll let you in on a secret. Turn the handle of the walk-in refrigerator and you’ll be transported to a hidden 1920’s speakeasy. Sink into a period-appropriate leather chesterfield and take your pick from a bar fully stocked with secretly imported alcohols and liqueurs, including a selection of over 100 whiskeys and bourbons.
The crowd intensifies on Thursday and Friday nights, so you’ll need to get in before 9pm to avoid the queue. Feeling lucky? The bar houses a locked safe and if you guess the code correctly you win a special prize.
We recommend: The Tostario – cachaça parati infused with herbs, Mezcal Vida, green lime juice, apricot jam, agave syrup and scrappy bitter cardamom.
Image courtesy of Bonjour Paris
El Diablo, Spain
Word of warning – book in early as this place is routinely filled up come dinner time. Located on the Spanish island of Lanzarote, in the Canary Islands, this rather rustic restaurant pays homage to its volcanic surrounds in a novelty fashion.
Using a non-conventional cooking system specially designed in consultation with architects, scientists and volcanologists, the chefs at El Diablo prepare meals with the help of a dormant volcano. Yes, you read that correctly. Your meal will be seared atop a volcanic crater by mother nature herself, using the full force of geothermal heat ranging as high as 450-500 degrees Celsius.
We recommend: Opt for the Volcan Grill Tour which includes a three-course barbecue meal, volcano tour and transport to and from your hotel.
Image courtesy of Tourism Lanzarote
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