From the fresh flavours of sashimi in Japan to mouth-watering Argentinian steak, sampling the delicious and varied local cuisine is a big part of why we love travelling. Our specialists are a team of foodies, so we asked them to whittle down their top five gourmet experiences around the world to tantalise your taste buds.
1. VESPA STREET FOOD TOUR
HO CHI MINH CITY, VIETNAM
Heading out on a street food tour on the back of a vintage Vespa lets you explore Ho Chi Minh City like a local and discover the delicious cuisine for which Vietnam is so famous. Setting off in the early evening, you’ll be whisked off to a rooftop bar to enjoy panoramic views of the city as the sun sets. From there, you will jump back on your Vespa, and your expert local driver will lead the way to some of the city’s best street food stalls. You’ll have the chance to sample some truly authentic cuisine, while your guide explains a little about the different flavours and cooking techniques. Next up, you’ll head to a hidden cafe, where you can dance to live music and mingle with the locals over a delicious Vietnamese coffee – most often served with sweetened condensed milk – or opt for something a little stronger!
2. PISCO SOURS & CEVICHE
In recent years, the innovative flavours of Peruvian cuisine have exploded onto the world stage and garnered the international acclaim they deserve. Experience this gastronomic revolution for yourself on a foodie tour of Lima, sampling the unique fusion of traditional cooking methods with exciting modern twists. Begin your tour by soaking up the bustling atmosphere and diverse aromas of a typical Peruvian market, marvelling at the colourful array of fresh produce on offer. Next you head to a local restaurant where you’ll learn how to prepare a delicious dish of ceviche, consisting of fresh raw fish cured in lime juice. You’ll also try your hand at cocktail making, mixing up a pisco sour, which is Peru’s national drink, before sitting down to enjoy a traditional lunch.
3. WINELANDS TOUR & WILD PICNIC
THE WINELANDS, SOUTH AFRICA
Spend the day exploring the beautiful towns of Franschhoek and Stellenbosch and the surrounding wine estates. Enjoy a tour of a wine cellar as well as an introduction to wine making, complete with delightful tastings. Wander through the vines and learn about the traditional farming methods; depending on the time of year, you may also be able to help with some grape picking. Let perfect pairings of wine and olives awaken your senses, and be sure to sample some of the local coffee blends in Stellenbosch’s inviting cafes. For lunch, you’ll be treated to a delicious wild picnic among the vines. Your guide will give you a hamper packed full of freshly baked bread, meat and cheese, and a bottle of fine South African wine, and leave you to soak up the stunning views in secluded bliss.
4. TSUKIJI FISH MARKET & SUSHI MAKING
One of the world’s largest wholesale markets, Tsukiji Fish Market in Tokyo handles over 2,000 tons of seafood every day. Its frantic tuna auctions turn the entire complex into a hive of activity, with 60,000 staff on site loading, preparing and packing the produce – a fascinating spectacle to observe. Spend the morning wandering around this enormous market exploring the impressive selection of fish, fruit and vegetables on offer. From here, you will head to a local Japanese home, where your hosts will teach you the intricacies of sushi making. Learn to prepare a variety of different types of sushi under the expert guidance of your hosts, including maki, nigiri and sashimi. Finish the morning by tucking into your delicious creations for a well-earned lunch.
5. PARRILLA TOUR
BUENOS AIRES, ARGENTINA
Argentina is famous for its mouth-watering steak and full-bodied Malbec, and nowhere is this combination more abundant than in the buzzing capital city of Buenos Aires, where the streets are lined with traditional steakhouses known as parrillas. The city is simply bursting with gastronomic delights, but to really get under the skin of the city and experience the truly authentic Porteño flavours, we recommend heading out on a parrilla tour. With the help of a knowledgeable guide, you’ll discover hole-in-the-wall restaurants known only to locals, where you can sample some of the city’s best steak. From succulent cuts of meat to handmade empanadas and even the city’s best ice cream, this foodie tour is sure to satiate your appetite.