VACATION! What to do?! Help!
I work as a cook in Norway and now I have 2 weeks vacation and I need your help!
I'm looking for somewhere, probably in Europe, to go on a short notice and pretty cheap. I want to:
- Catch some sun
- Eat well
- Get inspired
...and most importantly
- Se some real fine produce, preferably vegetables and seafood
I picture myself on a moped, travelling around a region in France/Spain just trying some of the world's best products, getting inspired and amused!
Where should I go to get the most out of it in just two weeks? Where would I be most likely to find a lot of great produce in the smallest area/time, and at the same time enjoy a beautiful environment during my field trips?
Please help me out here and share your own experiences!
Aren't there any good gastro-guides for southern france or northern spain focused on produce instead of only restaurants? Let me know then!
France and Spain are wonderful for what you are looking for, but you should post on the specific boards for these countries. The Europe board is a catch-all for those countries that there is no designated board for. Look into the Basque region of southwest France and northern Spain. Good luck! You can't go wrong with these areas.
I recommend Sicily, although you'll need to hit the Italy board for recommendations there. The Agritourismo scene in Sicily is very strong and if you're looking for fresh produce, staying at farms should hit the mark.
I also highly recommend Malta's smaller island Gozo for a more rural get away. You can stay in great farmhouses while exploring the little island on moped and eating great seafood (and rabbit) wherever you go.
I second the suggestion of Sicily - you can't help but be inspired by the food there. You have mountain/hill towns, seaside villages, sun, fish, locally produced/grown vegetables. I was delighted when I was there to see carts and carts of gorgeously red tomatoes, and they tasted exactly the way a tomato should!
If you go you should go to Modica (not far from Ragusa) in the south west. Fattoria del Torre was simply heaven! There are something like 20+ chocolate factories in Modica alone, which make a grainy chocolate bar - odd at first but delicious! Check out the BBC 3 part series Sicily Unpacked George Locatelli and Andrew Graham Dixon and you will be inspired to go to Sicily! Good luck!
Assuming that you can get a good price for flights, then Cyprus would be particularly good at this time of year. Still good weather. Lots of small villages with tavernas to sample for lunch. And a good mix of flavours, with the cooking coming from both of the island's ethnic traditions, on which the Cypriots put their own spin. .
For a more unique adventure, why not try Istria, Croatia? Loaded with all sorts of wondrous produce, wine, fish/seafood and white truffles. It is a gorgeous and stunning country. Very rural and much of it is not commercialized.
My second pick would be Sicily.