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Which European Country has the best food selections (other than Italy)....

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Dec 28th, 2012, 09:26 AM
  #21
 
Join Date: Dec 2012
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>>"which of these countries has more original cuisine that you can only experience in that country?"<<

That's a really hard question to answer, because if you do your research, you can find certain traditional dishes in both Spain and Belgium that you really can't get even other parts of those countries. There are some dishes that Spaniards themselves don't eat outside of the region where they are native foods, unless maybe they go to a restaurant in Madrid with a chef from that region who has an outstanding reputation for being able to cook those uniquely regional dishes.

BUT?

Spain exports a huge amount of its native food products, and the notion of "tapas" has just about taken over the world, especially the global capitals. You can actually get credible, delicious tapas and pintxos now in New York City, Los Angeles, San Francisco, London - I even had them in Amsterdam. (They are hugely popular in Brussels.) You can certainly get cabrales cheese, Iberico ham, Spanish olive oils, wines, Marcona almonds, etc.

By contrast, it is extremely difficult to get true Belgian cuisine, even in New York City. Many of the greatest Belgian beers are not exported (the gins and genevers, not at all). The freshness of handmade chocolates in Belgium is something to be experienced. True Belgian "waffles" and Belgian fries have a great flavor that doesn't remotely resemble waffles and "french fries" elsewhere.

So if you are coming all the way to Europe and would like to taste amazing food the likes of which you are not going to run across any time soon once you get back home, then you really do have to go to Belgium to eat Belgian food.
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Dec 28th, 2012, 09:31 AM
  #22
 
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I love the food in Portugal, Spain, and Greece. I'm a seafood lover so they are perfect. I do not like the food in Germany, Switzerland, Czech Republic, Hungary..too heavy and meat based for me. It was hard to find anything on the menus to order after a day or two.
Dreaming of grilled octopus and a Greek salad right now!
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Dec 28th, 2012, 09:57 AM
  #23
 
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Most travelers have a few mediocre meals in one country ( city) or several very good ones in another...and form their judgment on those experiences. Makes sense.
I have had bad/good meals in Brussels, Barcelona, Paris, New York, Berlin, Venice etc...
No guarantees one will have a great meal even in a highly recommended restaurant - never mind the whole country.
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Dec 28th, 2012, 10:28 AM
  #24
 
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I never intended to say that Italian food isn;t good. Most of it is excellent. But - in Venice there are a lot of places that serve food that is mediocre to awful (among those that serve food that is very good.) We have had bad food several times in Venice - including twice in places that were upscale with good reputations and reviews. (Fish is NOT supposed to be grilled so it is crunchy all the way through.) the problem, obviously, is that tourists outnumber the locals - so bad restaurants somehow survive.

I have never had anything in several trips to Belgium, encompassing a fairly large number of cities and towns (and very little of Brussels) that was not excellent. And yes, the food does tend to be traditional. And the chocolates (made in chocolate shops, always fresh) are to die for.
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Dec 28th, 2012, 10:53 AM
  #25
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Goldenautumn, u r so great at this u should start a blog. Uve been a helpful and i think we should be friends! Ok that came out weird and creepy. Haha

So i guess, i would have to go for belgium if im more into the food criteria. So France-Belgium-italy. Or should i go for belgium last coz i need to bring packs of those chocolates in Dubai.

Yum.
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