As I sit at my desk, staring at the empty bottle of “Cheap White Wine” sitting next to my external hard drive, my mind cannot help but wander to my wonderful European adventure. The last couple of weeks, I have had the pleasure of visiting Reykjavik, London, and Paris, sightseeing, visiting with friends old and new, and eating. Eating, in fact, with a capital E.
So, as I gear up to eat leftovers for lunch, here are some of the culinary highlights of my trip.
1. Lobster Soup at Saegreifinn (Reykjavik)
I wouldn’t call myself a “lobster person” but this soup is totally savory, creamy without being heavy, and is chock full of the most tender lobster I’ve ever had. Comes with a warm loaf of white bread. I wanted to take a picture of it, but I gobbled it up too quickly.
2. Anything you eat in a hot spring (Reykjavik)
The White Nights Tour, offered through GoEcco tour guides, is an enrapturing experience, even for an indoor cat like me. After a long stroll through a landscape of stinky geysers, greener-than-green-hills, and coy sheep, I probably would have devoured anything the guide gave me. I think it was a hard-boiled egg sandwich. I inhaled it, along with a healthy gulp of Brennivin. (Brennivin is like Sambuca that you can use to remove varnish from your furniture.) It just goes to show: atmosphere counts!
3. Chai at Dishoom (London)
London is known for its Indian food, so I took a London friend to Indian brunch at the Covent Garden Dishoom. While bacon and eggs on naan is certainly a treat, what I can’t get out of my head is the chai tea. My dining companion, who has visited India, assured me that what I was drinking was the “real thing.” Can’t ever say I’ve had chai like it: sweet but not too sweet, a touch spicy but still very easy to drink. Cheerio, chai tea. I miss you already.
4. Probably anything off the menu at Moro (London)
I knew we were in for a good meal when they brought the sourdough bread at the beginning (and I asked for seconds). Having sampled my companions’ dinners as well as my own, I can attest that the fish is great (especially if it is covered in yogurt, um, yogHURT, right?), as is the vegetable mezze plate that I ordered. Also recommended: the courgette-feta fritters as an appetizer and the yoghurt cake from the dessert menu. I’ve pretty much listed everything I tried there, and I suspect you can’t order wrong at Moro. I’m tempted to buy their cookbook, though there is no way I could ever re-create their culinary magic.
5. Crepes from Chez Nicos (Paris)
Okay, so it was one of the closest crepe stands to my hotel, but the citron presse was perfect. Check the Yelp reviews and you will see I’m not alone in my appreciation.
6. Soft-boiled egg appetizer from Cafe Constant (Paris)
A breaded hard-boiled egg… impossible, you say? More like improbable. I don’t know how they did it, but it was totally delicious. Go early, because Cafe Constant is a gem, but it is not hidden but in fact quite popular. Also recommended: Gazpacho, fillet of sea bream with pesto.
7. Passion Fruit Sorbet from Berthillon (Paris)
I found one stand on the Left Bank serving these glaces, and I was hooked. My favorite flavor is Passion Fruit, but it is not for the faint-of-TART. Get it? Yeah it’s super tart. I love it. The pistachio is also delicious, though it tastes more like a pistachio than the bright green pistachio ice cream I grew up with.