Food + Drink
Somewhere above the Bering Sea on the long haul flight between Tokyo and New York, a Japan Airlines flight attendant kindly brought me a steaming bowl of rich broth and chewy udon noodles. Mine was the only seat lit at this late hour in the darkened cabin while glued to a subtitled crime drama marathon. (I'm a sucker for film noir in any language.) Recently, JAL launched its new business-class "Sky Suite" service on international routes to New York, London and Paris; service to Chicago and Los Angeles follows shortly. It's almost like having your own capsule hotel room, complete with a fully reclining seat, 23-inch LCD screen, and bed slippers. Definitely request a window seat for utmost privacy.
Our abridged, meal-by-meal guide to where and what to eat now.
Breakfast: Johnnycake at Carriage House
Southern comfort at this sunlit Wicker Park café means a cornmeal flatbread with house-made peach preserves and maple syrup. ($9)
Lunch: Smoked Trout Sandwich at the Garden at Nightwood
Head to the artsy Pilsen area for a game of bocce and a seafood-centric BLT: smoked trout, summer squash pickles, and bacon. ($12)
Snack: Spinach-and-Feta Empanada at La Sirena Clandestina
Brazilian-inspired drinks are the draw at the hip Market District hangout—best paired with these crisp, bite-size pockets. ($4)
Last summer I took a road trip to “secret” Amish country—a little-known stretch of farms on route 772, east of Lancaster, Pennsylvania. But how did I get away from the touristy version of Ye-Ancient-Country and experience the reality of America’s oldest locavore movement? We followed insider tips from the horse (-and-buggy)’s mouth: Joel Cliff, of the Pennsylvania Dutch Convention & Visitors Bureau: “The stretch of Rt. 772 that runs Southeast from Route 23 at Leola in the North to Route 340 at Intercourse in the South is chock full of authentic ‘finds’ without being a main tourist corridor.” Cliff was right. At the first roadside stand we pulled into, a twenty-something (barefoot!) couple sold us their homemade cheeses, mint tea, and the best cantaloupe I’ve ever tasted, all as their sweet-natured dogs lazed nearby in the sun. We asked what was down the side road that ran by their house, and the man answered: “Well, everything,” as if his whole world could be found along that gravel path. For two people from New York City, it was very nearly heaven.
Kathryn O'Shea-Evans is an associate editor at Travel + Leisure. Follow her on Twitter @ThePluckyOne.
Photo Courtesy of PaDutchCountry.com / Brian Evan
Atlantic City’s boardwalk hummed with activity on a balmy Saturday afternoon in July. A cavalcade of families roamed the sandy platform, dawdling over soft-swirled ice cream cones and baskets of fried Oreos, flanked by the umbrella-laden Jersey Shore. A gaggle convened outside Caesars for the annual food and wine festival, this year headlined by a group of Food Network stars: Robert Irvine, Rocco DiSpirito, and Pat and Gina Neely. Kitschy shops were full of tourists snatching up t-shirts and knickknacks. The scene was a snapshot of Americana at its best, a throwback to AC’s heyday.
But despite the robust crowds on this weekend, it has been a frenetic road for a relic that once thrived as the eastern seaboard’s entertainment epicenter. The Great Recession, Hurricane Sandy, and overall tourism shifts (Pennsylvania is now the northeast's gambling capital) have taken their toll. The gleaming 2012-opened, $2.4 billion Revel was supposed to be the antidote, a Las Vegas-grade temple to Michelin-star restaurants, clubby pool parties, and an ultra-luxe spa. The brain trust used Sin City’s evolution as a template, one that focuses on self-indulgent pleasures over blackjack and roulette tables; gambling was supposed to be an afterthought. A $111 million loss and March bankruptcy later, the hotel is now switching its attention, unveiling slot machine promotions and advertising campaigns—“Gamblers Wanted”—to draw visitors to their casino (they’ve even lifted the ban on smoking).
Griffintown, a former industrial neighborhood, is the latest stylish district to emerge along the Lachine Canal. Get there while it’s hot.
Set in an 1843 steamboat factory, the Arsenal complex now houses a gallery, video-screening room, and exhibition space. Recently on view: works by the Beijing-based Gao brothers. 2020 Rue William.
Montrealers are salivating over Grinder (pictured), a modern take on your grandfather’s steak house. Order one of the specialty tartares (the bison is mixed with espresso butter and orange brunoise) or the 40-ounce rib eye for two with a side of carrots glazed with thyme. 1708 Rue Notre-Dame Ouest. $$$
T+L asked a few of the city’s in-the-know denizens to reveal their favorite haunts.
Jeremy Morony, Software engineer, Carbon Five
“Four Barrel Coffee is the spot for socializing. I also like the custom shirts from nearby Taylor Stitch (383 Valencia St.).”
Ayana Ivery, Co-creator, L’Oven Fresh Goods bakery
“At Brenda’s French Soul Food, order the Hangtown fry: a scallion, fried oyster, and bacon scramble of deliciousness served with grits.”
Jason Harper, with sons Kaleb and Jacob, Firefighter
“My kids love flying kites at Crissy Field. I enjoy exploring Fort Point National Historic Site, built in 1861 and still in great condition.”
Sicily’s allure is undeniable, but its capital is less universally loved. T+L reveals five compelling reasons to make it a destination.
Because wine tasting is surprisingly sophisticated.
Forget cheap reds in straw-covered flasks: Palermo’s wine bars have become seriously chic. Try Vinoveritas (39-091/609-0653) for some 3,000 Italian and international pours and a tasty aperitivo spread; and Enoteca Picone, with its encyclopedic collection of small local producers. Kursaal Kalhesa, built into the medieval city walls, serves a dozen wines by the glass under ancient barrel arches.
I’ll admit it: For years, Mexican food has seemed synonymous to me with street food. Although I mean that in the best possible way; there’s no place I’d rather spend my lunch money than on a gloriously drippy taco from a hole-in-the-wall joint or roving vendor. To my mind, a lightly charred masa tortilla, stuffed with juicy carnitas and generous dollops of salsa verde, is a thing of perfection—a dish that couldn’t possibly be improved upon. At least that’s how I felt before I traveled to Bajain early July, and got a taste of a new culinary movement underway there.
The food world is buzzing about brothers Joan, Jordi, and Josep Roca, whose restaurant El Celler de Can Roca, in the Catalonian river town of Girona, was recently crowned No. 1 on the planet. But we’re sweet on their other spot nearby: Rocambolesc Gelateria. The pint-size ice cream shop, decorated with vintage machinery and pipes that look like candy canes, dispenses a rotating roster of soft-serve flavors (baked apple; tangerine sorbet) topped with such novelties as caramelized sheep’s milk and lychee-strawberry “cloud”—and not a sprinkle in sight.
Photo by Alvaro Leiva
We asked true travel pros what to do near the Colosseum in Rome. Want to share your advice? Join our community on Facebook at facebook.com/travelandleisure and at Twitter @TravlandLeisure.
“Order the salmon tagliolini at the Hotel Forum (25-30 Via Tor de’ Conti. $$$).” —@hithapalepu
“Have an aperitif in the top-floor restaurant at Hotel Palazzo Manfredi at sunset, looking over the ruins of ancient passageways.” —Katherine Pisana, via Facebook
“The Basilica of San Clemente (Via di San Giovanni in Laterano) is more than a church—it’s a fascinating voyage below ground and back in time.” —@walksofitaly
“Home goods store Logical Space Design (27 Via dei Santi Quattro) is filled with must-buy pieces.” —@brett_hughes
“Pay two euros to the silent order of nuns at Monastero dei Santi Quattro Coronati (20 Via dei Santi Quattro) to see 13th-century frescoes in the Chapel of St. Sylvester.” —@understandrome