Sunday, August 9, 2009
Iconic Dining - Twenty Places to Dine Before You Diet - Part One
TOURING THE WORLD, ONE MEAL AT A TIME.
A list of the twenty of the most interesting places in the world to dine, chosen not so much because of the haute cuisine as for the adventure and mystique that is part of the dining experience - food as a total body encounter that raises the whole concept of appetite to a different level.
Got a great place where you have dined memorably? Let me know and I'll add it to the list. Have you dined in any of these iconic rooms? What was your experience? Tell me about it.
Here's the first five,, all examples of dining with the ghosts of history, great views of the world, intriguing architecture - a back story for every menu. Bon Appetit!
1. British Virgin Islands - an intimate picnic/barbecue on a secluded beach in Virgin Gorda, with chilled champagne and caviar - part of the dining experience when you cruise on the SeaDream.
2. Tromso, Norway - At the Peppermolle,( Storgata 54) (That's The Peppermill in Norwegian) in Tromso, you can dine with the memory of Arctic explorer Roald Amundsen, who had his last meal in this pretty restaurant. The Amundsen Room is decorated with photographs of the famous Polar explorers, many of whom used Tromso as their base, and the food is genuinely authentic Norwegian cuisine - smoked salmon tartar, grilled caribou, fillet of monkfish. If you dine in the summer, you can take a walk after dinner in the long daylight, enjoy a chilled beer on a patio, or savour the views of Bergenfjord and the northern lights.
3. Amsterdam, Netherlands - How fitting that, in this country devoted to growing flowers and all sorts of green things, one of the best dining experiences is in a converted greenhouse.
One of the best, and a totally appropriate choice for a Dutch meal, is Restaurant De Kas, www.restaurantdekas.nl situated in a gorgeously restored greenhouse designed by architect Piet Boon, and dedicated to serving the freshest food, much of which is grown in the greenhouse itself or on its farm property outside the city. Dining there for lunch is a light-filled experience, but in the evening, with candles and subdued lighting, it’s romantic and cozy.
The food is excellent. They serve a fixed price five course meal consisting of a collection of starters, main course, a cheese course and dessert. There were fresh oysters with foamed oyster liquor, grilled polenta with scepes, spinach and hazelnuts, and a tartar of ‘skrie’, Norwegian and Dutch baby shrimp, paired with a champagne aperitif just for starters.
4. Wadi Rum, Jordan - dine in a bedouin tent on middle eastern specialties, like couscous, tabbouli, vegetarian shami (sauteed patties of chickpea and green vegetable served with sweet-and-sour pomegranate sauce and crushed walnuts), and lamb Koubideh (skewered lamb kebobs with grilled tomatoes) Sit on thick carpets, and lean back on a fat pillow. Afterwards, enjoy a few inhalations from an aromatic houkah.
5. Sydney, Australia - It's always an experience to dine in an architecturally special place - Guillame's in the Sydney Opera House serves Mod-Oz food with wonderful views of the opera goers and the Sydney Bridge.
To work up an appetite, you can do the famous Sydney Bridge Climb before dining.
So there it is, part one of a four part series documenting the most interesting places to dine in the world. Have you experienced any of these?
Log in soon for Part 2.