Malta Restaurants

Traditional Maltese cuisine is Italian in origin, but "international" food is on most restaurant menus as well. Locally caught fish is a specialty. The national dish is fenek (rabbit); braġjoli (beef olives) and lampuki (dorado) pie are runners-up. Pastry coats fish, vegetables, cheese, and pasta dishes. Soups, minestra (minestrone) and aljotta (fish) especially,

are common, and are delicious with daily baked crusty Maltese bread. Capers, the buds of the caperis specicum shrub that is native to the islands, are widely used. Native wine is abundant and inexpensive; look for medium-dry whites. Cisk lager is a local favorite, and try Hop Leaf pale ale for something with a bit more bite. Kinnie, a terrific nonalcoholic thirst quencher, is made from a "secret recipe" that includes bitter oranges.

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