A man in his 20s squeezes past our chairs, places a bag on the floor and delves his hand deep into Mariette. I’ve never seen anything quite like this in a café.
Is there anything more Canadian than maple syrup? Rumour has it that even Mounties, lumberjacks and ice hockey players start their day with lashings of the dark amber syrup on their sugar-dusted pancakes.
Epifanios of Mylopotamos is one of around 2,500 Orthodox monks living in the Autonomous Monastic State of the Holy Mountain, the peninsula jutting 50km into the Aegean Sea from Halkidiki in northern Greece.
Some might consider a brunch featuring a dozen oysters as decadent. But this is the third Sunday in October and I’m in the Belgian city of Ghent.
If you enjoy cheese plus insights into regional heritage and culinary traditions then make a note to visit Gouda’s long-established cheese market next summer.
Britain has its fish and chips, Germany has Currywurst mit Pommes while in Belgium the ‘must-try’ national dish is surely mussels with fries. To do that I headed to Chez Léon in the heart of Brussels.
It’s lunchtime at Pohl in Germany’s Rhineland-Palatinate and the food being served is new to me. The recipes, though, were written down over 1,600 years ago. Today’s cuisine is Roman.
One of the key reasons I love travel is it provides opportunities to explore the flavours of a place. That encompasses eating in restaurants, trying local snacks and looking out for products I don’t see in shops and markets back at home.
“When I was 21 I came back to Holland and I opened my first restaurant,” says chef Jim de Jong as we chat in the arched dining room of Restaurant de Jong in Rotterdam.
“Bari is flat, so it’s perfect for cycling,” says Alf, who turns to look at me as he pedals. I have it easy, I’m sat under the canopy of his rickshaw and taking a foodie tour around Bari Vecchia, the old town in the heart of Apulia capital.