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#FriFotos: Coffee from our favorite local New Orleans coffee shop, PJ’s Coffee!
“The most satisfying cup of coffee you will ever experience.”
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“My Top 10 Restaurants” by Tausha Cowan. Tausha shared her favorite restaurants from around the world with gtrot!
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Tausha Cowan of The Hungry Girl Chronicles was nice enough to share her favorite restaurants from all over the world with us! You’re in for a treat, enjoy!
There is something about a good meal that makes me insanely happy. I don’t question it; I just go with it, and then I blog about it. As founder of the food blog The Hungry Girl Chronicles, I get to regularly share my love of good meals and traveling by featuring amazing restaurants from all over the world. And now, I am revealing my top 10 restaurants EVER, or at least that I can remember. Let’s start with No. 10, shall we?
No.10: Wahaca – London, United Kingdom I have to admit, I was a tad skeptical upon moving to London after hearing some shaky thingsabout the food scene. In actuality, London has amazing restaurants, one of which is Wahaca,a Mexican market restaurant with four locations and a food truck scattered around the city.Wahaca serves more traditional items such as steak and chicken burritos but also fun and inventive tapas-style dishes like shrimp and scallop ceviche tostadas and broad bean and feta quesadillas. The interesting combinations are what I love most about Wahaca, pairing ingredients I would not normally think of, such as their taquitos with potatoes, lettuce, feta cheese and habenero salsa. This combo is amazing and I am forever grateful to Wahaca for introducing me to it.
No. 9: Rubino – Valletta, Malta A few friends and I discovered Rubino after searching for a nice restaurant in Valletta that serves rabbit. It turns out Rubino not only serves deliciously well-flavored rabbit but also wonderful Italian and Maltese dishes that stick with you months after you walk out of the restaurant, possibly even years. The pasta (I had the ricotta gnocchi in a sage and butter sauce and spaghetti with tomatoes and sea urchin) is divine, as is one of Rubino’s most popular desserts, Cassata Siciliana. Beyond the food, the atmosphere is intimate yet welcoming to all.
No. 8: Efxaris – Athens, Greece This restaurant is one of the more recent additions to the list and, to be frank, unexpected. I walked in with doubts and left surprised at how appetizing the food turned out to be. Located in a fairly touristy area near the Acropolis, I thought it would taste just okay due to my ownhang-ups about restaurants in touristy areas. Turns out the food was incredibly well seasoned and packed with flavor, particularly their spinach pie, Greek salad and moussaka. Even the bread tasted great, served toasted with green olive tapenade. If you have me at the breadbasket, that must be a good sign.
No. 7: Le Chéri Bibi – Paris, France I recently visited this restaurant after a Parisian friend recommended I stop by for dinner.Located on a quiet street in Montmarte near the Sacré-Cœur, Chéri Bibi is a hip restaurant with a slightly bohemian feel and delicious food. With a menu that changes often, the restaurant offers a pretty good prix-fixe deal for an appetizer and entrée or entrée and dessert, or an appetizer, entrée and dessert. I went with the former, enjoying a risotto with poached egg and black pepper followed by roasted lamb and potatoes. All of it was amazing, leaving me slightly regretful I had not indulged in a dessert. There will most certainly be a next time, though. I highly recommend this restaurant for those looking for great food and a young Parisian crowd in one of Paris’s coolest neighborhoods.
No. 6: Taverna Kyclades – Astoria, New York The first of several New York restaurants on the list, this is the Greek seafood go-to for those who cannot make it to Greece. Taverna Kyclades serves everything from grilled octopus, to stuffed shrimp, to fried baby shark, all of which taste great. They even have pork chops and Greek style hamburgers for those not in the mood for seafood, and perhaps most importantly, everyone is served a complimentary dessert at the end of their meal. Amazing, right? Due to the popularity of this place, expect to wait somewhere in the neighborhood of one hour before being seated (reservations not taken), but I promise you, it’s worth the wait.
No. 5: Heritage Indian Restaurant – Accra, Ghana This might be a bold addition considering I have not been to this restaurant in five years,but it must say something if I still think about it (constantly). I happen to LOVE Indian food.Cannot get enough of it, and to this day, some of the best Indian food I have ever tasted was at Heritage Indian Restaurant in Accra, Ghana. Yes, Accra as in West Africa. In addition to great décor, the food is, simply put, amazing. From the naan and roti to the saag and vindaloo, there was not a bad item on the table. Or at least there was not five years ago. I like to think Heritage is just as good today.
No. 4: Kappacasein – London, United Kingdom This might be cheating since Kappacasein is technically not a restaurant but I had to include it anyway. Why, you may be wondering? Because it is home to the best cheese sandwich you will ever taste. Yes, the best! Once a popular staple at Borough Market, I now make the trek toKappacasein’s new location in Bermondsey to buy the toasted cheese sandwich, a delectable concoction of Montgomery cheddar, onions, leeks and garlic on sourdough bread. It is truly a must for anyone who is visiting London but make sure to verify the opening hours because it would be a shame to miss out on this treat.
No. 3: Chez Palmyre – Nice, France I love French food, especially when eaten in unassuming, cute French bistros. Chez Palmyre is just that, located on a small street in the Old Town of Nice. Reservations are highly recommended, as this place gets packed for both lunch and dinner. For lunch, I enjoyed an affordable € 14 prix-fixe, which included classic dishes served in not-so-classic ways. One example is the Club Niçoise, an appetizer featuring a niçoise salad in the form of a sandwich.Different presentation, same great taste. It is what I love most about Chez Palmyre.
No. 2: Casellula Cheese & Wine Café – New York, New York Specializing in two of my favorite things, Casellula indulges the cheese and wine lover in multiple ways, all of which are equally amazing. Whether it’s a cheese flight or a glass of German Riesling, this café never disappoints. In addition to their extensive cheese and wine list, Casellula also has mouth-watering dishes, including chistorras in a blanket with radish pico de gringo and goose breast reuben with fontina and horseradish aioli. Not to mention it’s quite possibly the coziest cheese and wine café ever with a staff that creates the most delicious dishes without a real kitchen! All of this and more makes Casellula my second favorite restaurant.
No. 1: Vesta – Astoria, New York Despite having visited myriad countries and restaurants over the years, Vesta in Astoria,Queens remains my favorite. My love for this trattoria and wine bar is never-ending. From my very first visit to my last, I have yet to walk out of Vesta disappointed. In fact, I am usually giddy because I just had an amazing meal at a restaurant that prides itself on using fresh ingredients in unique ways. With a menu that is, for the most part, constantly changing, Vesta has become beloved amongst Astoria residents and with good reason. The food is always delicious and the atmosphere is one of warmth and friendliness. They also have an unbelievable dessert known as the Baby Jesus Cake, which is worth the indulgence and then some.
So there you have it: my top 10 restaurants from around the world, at least for now. Who knows when the next amazing meal will come my way but I look forward to finding it.
For more restaurants and Tausha’s food musings, head over to The Hungry Girl Chronicles!
Check out Tausha Cowan’s Featured Traveler profile! She’s a student by day, and foodie by night.
Name: Tausha Cowan
I am someone who loves to be on the move! I was raised in South Florida but spent most of my summer and winter vacations traveling to Jamaica to visit family. After high school, I moved to New York to attend college, where I was able to explore other cultures in different parts of the world. My travels included two study abroad programs – one in Accra, the other in Paris – and multiple trips to places in West Africa and Europe, including Timbuktu, Togo, Burkina Faso, Amsterdam, Prague and Florence. Since graduating college in 2007, I spent several years working in the media industry in New York and traveling when I could to places primarily in North America. I am now pursuing my master’s degree in London, where I attempt to squeeze in as many trips as possible in between my studies. I have traveled to several countries in the last year, including Malta, Spain, Morocco, Germany, Belgium, Italy, Greece and Switzerland, and hope to continue my adventures in Asia in the near future. I also write a food blog called The Hungry Girl Chronicles which features recipes and restaurant reviews from my travels.
I have lots of favorites, hence my need to write a food blog, but there is one place in my former neighborhood that has the best meals made with the freshest ingredients. Vesta in Astoria, Queens (New York) never fails to deliver. Their menu changes regularly and everything on it is fantastic, not to mention they have a dessert called the Baby Jesus cake.
Best place to relax:
I am partial to Jamaica, not only because it’s where my family is from but also because of its natural beauty. I can spend the rest of my days in Negril and be a happy camper.
I think it depends on your idea of fun. I have fun in a lot of places because of the people I’m with.
I can’t pick just one. It’s like picking a favorite child!
Travel when you can, if you can and keep an open mind. It is truly a rewarding experience to step out of your comfort zone, get lost, speak to locals, and learn something new about others and yourself.