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Catalonia Dreaming

Catalonia

Medieval villages, cliff-side beaches, freshly caught fish, and rich flavors—T+L gets lost in Catalonia’s rugged countryside along Spain's northeastern coast.

“Don’t look!” said my husband, Chip. It had been my idea to revisit Cadaqués, the tiny, remote Catalan fishing town that Salvador Dalí once called the most beautiful place in the world. But in the twenty-odd years since my last trip to Catalonia I had forgotten the wild hairpin drive up the rocky crags of Spain’s northern Mediterranean coast and the dizzying drop to the postage-stamp village below.

I first discovered Cadaqués with Parisian friends, in my twenties. We had stopped at the Dalí Theater-Museum in Figueres, with its surrealist, egg-topped cornice, before heading east to the wild coast to linger over glasses of local Muscat in the Bar Marítim on the beach and to soak up the town’s bohemian charms. We had heard stories of Marcel Duchamp playing chess with John Cage and Jean Cocteau at the Bar Melitón in the 1960’s, when the best way to arrive was by boat. The many artists who had come here since the 1930’s—including Picasso, Max Ernst, André Breton, Man Ray, and Joan Miró—played chess there or paid a visit to Dalí at his house up the road in Portlligat.

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Harlem Eat Up! Festival to launch in NYC May 2015

marcus_harlem_eat_upjpgWith all the notable restaurants opening in New York City’s Harlem neighborhood—Red Rooster and the Cecil, to name just two—it’s fast becoming a local foodie mecca. That’s why today’s announcement came as no surprise to many: Harlem Eat Up!, the area’s first-ever food festival in partnership with sponsors like EY (Ernst & Young) and non-profit groups such as Citymeals-on-Wheels (the main beneficiary), will launch this time next year.

On a balmy Wednesday afternoon, celebrity chef Marcus Samuelsson gathered at his Red Rooster restaurant alongside supporters including New York City mayor Bill DeBlasio and former president Bill Clinton to make the announcement (check out the video above to hear president Clinton on the festival). Come May 15, 2015, we’re excited to eat ourselves silly, but we’re also way impressed with chef Samuelsson, who continues to do amazing things to boost this historic—but long-neglected—uptown neighborhood.

Jennifer FlowersJennifer Flowers is the Food and Hotels Editor at Travel + Leisure. Find her on Twitter at @JennFlowers.

 

Photos by Jennifer Flowers

Galway, Ireland Untamed

Galway Ireland

On a journey to the rugged coast of Galway, Ireland, T+L finds small towns and quiet pubs, raucous musicians, and no shortage of Irish resilience and pride.

The sky is without stars or moon. There are no lights, no sign of life in any direction, only the night—and the road. The car’s headlights shine into blackness, revealing the thin, crooked, ungraded ribbon of tarmac disappearing into mist. When I step out the wind is ripping. The rain has stopped. I think perhaps I can hear something through the wind, someone calling. I listen harder, and then I hear it again. Voices? This is the Bog Road outside Clifden, in Connemara, County Galway, in the far west of Ireland. I’ve been told it’s haunted.

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Daily Transporter: Dutch Treat

canal view

The average Dutch person—who drinks around 72 liters of beer annually—now has 217 breweries to choose from, up from just 123 breweries in 2012. Proost!

See America's Coolest Breweries

Editor’s Picks: The Netherlands
World’s Most Beautiful Canal Cities
World’s Strangest Bridges
Best Countries for Solo Travelers

Ann Shields is a senior digital editor at Travel + Leisure. You can find her on Twitter at @aegisnyc. Get the Daily Transporter newsletter in your in-box.

Photo courtesy of T+L Photo Contest

Best Airport Lounges for Food

Airport Lounges: Turkish Airlines

Where food takes center stage.

Turkish Airlines

Airport/Terminal: Istanbul Atatürk, Departures (pictured)
How to Get In:
Star Alliance first or business international ticket, or Gold status.
The Space:
Ottoman chic, with dramatic arched entryways.
The Food:
35 stations with meze (tabbouleh; zucchini salad), flatbreads, house-made pastries, and wine.
Great Dish:
Spicy menemen (Turkish scrambled eggs).

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Stephen Colbert's Favorite Things to Do in Charleston

Stephen Colbert

Long before he agreed to take over as host of the Late Show, Stephen Colbert was just another Charleston boy—swimming, fishing, and skateboarding down the quiet streets of what he recalls as a “sleepy Southern town.” Today, the South Carolina city is still one of his favorite vacation spots. Read on for Colbert’s down-home haunts.

Stay: Growing up, Colbert helped his mother run a now-defunct B&B in their house in the South of Broad neighborhood. “Back then, if I booked a guest, I got ten percent. A kid could have a whole weekend of fun on fifteen bucks.” Hotels he remembers from boyhood: the Francis Marion Hotel ($)—with views of the harbor—and 1853’s Mills House Wyndham Grand Hotel ($).

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Daily Transporter: Istria's Truffle Season

adriatic

After Italian soldiers discovered truffles growing on Croatia’s Istrian peninsula during WWII, the prized fungus found its way into the regional cuisine. When white truffles are in season (mid-September to mid-December), the Istrian beaches empty out and the focus of 800 licensed truffle hunters, and thousands of amateurs, shifts to the forest.

See Istria in Europe’s Secret Hot Spots

Editor’s Picks: Istria
Best Life-Changing Trips
Best Places to Rebound
Wackiest Cruise Shore Excursions

Ann Shields is a senior digital editor at Travel + Leisure. You can find her on Twitter at @aegisnyc. Get the Daily Transporter newsletter in your in-box.

Photo: David Alexander Arnold

Daily Transporter: Waikiki SPAM Jam

dreamy pool bar

At today’s Waikiki SPAM Jam—the annual manifestation of Hawaii’s abiding love for the canned pink meat—local artisanal popsicle company Onopops will be selling some custom flavors: Peanut Butter Ice Cream with Candied SPAM, and Pineapple Sorbet with Candied SPAM, Brown Spice & Cherries popsicles.

See Honolulu: A Local’s Tour

Editor’s Picks: Honolulu
America’s Best Outdoor Bars
Beautiful Beach Photos
World’s Best Cities for Romance

Ann Shields is a senior digital editor at Travel + Leisure. You can find her on Twitter at @aegisnyc. Get the Daily Transporter newsletter in your in-box.

Photo of the Modern Honolulu Hotel's pool bar: Linny Morris

London's Peruvian Food Craze

photo_3jpg

Scallops, Chia Seeds, Tumbo Passion.

The list of Peruvian restaurants in London seems to grow longer each month as Chotto Matte, Ceviche, Andina, Coya, and Lima (the first Peruvian restaurant to receive a Michelin star) are playing with ancient culinary traditions and introducing them to eager foodies. While each spot decidedly offers their own style, it's the blend of Japanese and Peruvian techniques and flavors, called Nikkei cuisine, that offers some of the most innovative, exciting dishes I’ve tasted.

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Q+A with René Redzepi, Chef at Noma—Just Named World's Top Restaurant (Again)

René Redzepi at Tacos Morelos

Well, we called it - René Redzepi's Noma reclaimed first place this year at the prestigious World's Best Restaurants awards. Noma first received the honor in 2010 and held steady through 2012, but came in second last year to Spain's El Celler de Can Roca, which retreated to second place in this year's rankings. T+L's Adam Sachs recently caught up with the revered chef in New York City.

A pocket-size mutt stares intently up at René Redzepi through the window of Tacos Morelos, a four-table taqueria in New York’s East Village. We’ve over-ordered—tongue tacos and fish tacos and house-made tortillas folded around a stewy, soft thing called suadero. This might seem an unlikely place to lunch with the charming forager, chef of Copenhagen’s Noma, chief progenitor of the New Nordic style, and accidental ringleader for a generation of international chef dudes. But René Redzepi is really into tacos. Enough so that his next venture will be helping Noma’s sous-chef, Rosio Sanchez, open a new taco shop in Copenhagen called Hija de Sanchez. (Yes, there are Mexican restaurants in Copenhagen. No, they’re not any good. “You’ve got Danish students in sombreros serving you,” Redzepi says, sadly. “You want to punch them.”)

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