I am constantly asked for “my list” of favorite spots and favored cities - enough so that I’ve decided to move that collection of personal recommendations here. Travel is a deeply personal experience - it’s difficult to give one-size-fits-all recommendations; all I can offer is an honest overview of how I travel, and hope that the same approach might resonate with you, as well.
When I’m traveling, I have an outsize focus on food and drink - because that’s what I love, and that’s what I do for a living. Cultural excursions are a close second (museums, theater, live music), followed by physical activity. I love an opportunity to exercise in a foreign city, and there is hardly a better way to experience a place than strapping on your running shoes and hitting the streets, with the added bonus of making room for - you guessed it - more food and drink. The list below is about 95% food and drink. (Besides, when people ask for suggestions, that’s what I’ve found they are really looking for.)
So, a note about the kinds of restaurants and bars I seek out: I am unusually drawn to old school, classic, iconic restaurants over new and trendy if I am traveling for pleasure. I like to try newer, buzzy restaurants for lunch (when they are easier to get into), and classic joints for dinner. This goes wrong for some people because classic restaurants (25 years and older) can sometimes be quieter, more serene, and not as high energy - though not always the case. Depending on what vibe you’re seeking, I suggest you do some research, check out images of the dining room, and make your call. For me, a classic place, despite the vibe, can be such a great glimpse into the history of a city, and those restaurants and bars tend to be untouched by trend, which I find impossibly charming. The more out of date, the more I tend to love it.
With that being said, a collection of my favorite places across the globe, coming soon: