I wasn't an hour on the ground in Taipei before a pancake was shoved in my face and I was tearing into its oily belly, clumps of egg and chewy dough funneling down my throat.
'international' on Serious Eats
Singapore's hawker centers are at a crossroads as the original vendors age. Will a new generation of hawkers keep the tradition alive?
There's a lot of Taipei that you can eat in the three or so hours you'll devote to waiting on line and eating at Din Tai Fung. Here are four great places near the restaurant you can visit in that stretch of time, including some soup dumplings I actually enjoyed more than the supposed gold standard.
The torta ahogada ("drowned sandwich") began as a working man's lunch, almost exclusively sold from small stands on street corners. The inventor died decades ago, but a link to the beginning of the simple sandwich still remains in the city center where his apprentice has been clocking in every morning for the last 55 years. Here's the true story of the torta ahogada, plus tips on where to get a great one if you go to Guadalajara.
If you're going to Singapore, you shouldn't miss Little India. The flavors found in this neighborhood are the real deal, not watered down for Western palates. Here's our guide to the essential bites, from extra-crisp fermented rice crepes on the southern end to Gujarati home cooking on the northern side.
Wine-loving folk in Baja, Mexico, speak with pride about the Valle de Guadalupe, a surprisingly lush, wide cut of land just off the coast from Ensenada. But the region is a destination for more than wine—restaurants cooking with lush local produce and seafood are serving some fantastic meals.
Despite Berlin's reputation as the capital of mild, the epicenter of inauthentic Asian food, there's a layer of not just acceptable, but actually good restaurants for mapo tofu and dumplings, laab and fiery papaya salad, pho and more, lurking just below the bland, curry-covered surface.
Japan's everyday green tea, sencha, can be one of the most satisfying beverages on earth, simultaneously soothing and invigorating. And the city of Kagoshima is one of the best places to drink it.
With six days in Mexico City plus an impromptu trip to Puebla, I had the chance to eat quite a bit of Mexican food. Here are some of my highlights (and by highlights, I mean nearly everything I ate).
A new generation of Newfoundland chefs, fueled by renewed local pride and the island's growing economy, is bringing the lessons learned in their grandmothers' kitchens to St. John's restaurants. These restaurants are recreating—and sometimes reinventing—local ingredients and traditional meals in the Canadian province's capital in ways that bring to mind both the terroir-driven cuisine of Nordic countries and the casual hominess of country cooking in the Southern states of the US.
Most Javanese food can attribute its relative simplicity to the fact that it's an indigenous cuisine that has remained largely unaffected by outside forces, save for a bit of Chinese influence in certain dishes. Martabak, a roti-like stuffed fried flatbread, is a notable exception. Even on Java, folks I talked to said "this isn't Javanese food, it's Indian." Others trace its origins to the Middle East. Either way, it's one of the best street foods around.
Da Nang, perhaps best known by travelers for its beach resorts, is Vietnam's fifth largest city, and its feet stand in two worlds. Look up and your eyes fill with views of glistening skyscrapers, their sides adorned with garish neon. But the streets are full of flimsy aluminum tables and cheap plastic chairs, seating for the city's greatest asset: its street food.
Chiang Mai easily makes the list of my top five favorite cities in the world. Culinarily, it's one of the least familiar regions of Thailand. The local dishes, influenced by Burma to the Northwest, and China's Yunnan province and Laos to the north, don't really make it far beyond Northern Thai borders. With the exception of a few dishes at Pok Pok, Andy Ricker's ode to Chiang Mai in Portland and New York, I'd never seen half the dishes I tasted while we were there. The big exception is Khao Soi, the area's most popular export. I was eager to taste this fantastic dish at the source.
Fish markets offer a unique glimpse into local food culture—and if you're jetlagged, the early morning timing might even be convenient. We stopped by Dubai's seaside fish souk at 5:15 a.m. on a recent visit. Join us on a tour.
Located at the terminus of the Silk Road and at one time the cultural and political capitol of China, the city of Xi'an in Shaanxi province has one of the more interesting culinary histories in China, in no small part due to the influence of its large Muslim population.
As any traveler will tell you, it's the little differences that make a place seem foreign, and often these trifles are exasperating and exhilarating at the same time.
Ever since having my first taste of a Xiao Long Bao—variously referred to as "soup dumplings" or "juicy steamed buns" on American Chinese menus—I've yearned to taste them at the source in Shanghai. But it turns out that XLB are only half of the soup dumping story.
I haven't gotten around to naming the Seven Culinary Wonders of the World, but Peking duck would be high in the running for one of those coveted slots.
There aren't many places in the world where you can get down with a juicy piece of grass-fed beef, indulge in a multi-course chef's tasting menu, and drink an excellent bottle of wine, all for under 30 dollars. Oh, Buenos Aires, you are a frugal food lover's paradise.
You have to hand it to the British Isles—they really appreciate their snacks. St. Paddy's had us thinking about McVitie's Hobnobs and Tayto's cheese and onion crisps, which reminded us of all the British snacky foods as well. Here are 11 of our favorite munchable treats from across the pond.