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5 cities for serious food lovers—from Lisbon's best seafood restaurant to Toronto's global plates on a budget

The world is full of incredible foodie destinations that will satisfy both your longing for adventure and your taste buds. I've enjoyed hunting out Florida Keys' most incredible seafood restaurants and tapas in Mahon, Menorca but there's also a handful of cities across the globe that are unrivalled when it comes to food, chefs and top class restaurants.

Here's my pick of five cities for serious food lovers...


Whatever you do, don’t miss dinner at Cervejaria Ramiro, the seafood is some of the best I've ever eaten, try the tiger prawns covered in melted butter and a perfectly cooked crab. There’s always a massive queue to get in because everyone knows how good this spot is, so get there early and be prepared to wait a while, it’s SO worth it. If cheese and wine is more your thing, BA wine bar in Bairro Alto is a great option. There are just a few tables so try and book online for an evening of the most delicious cheeses paired with Portuguese wines, a real highlight.

plate of prawns with butter and lemon at cervejaria ramiro lisbon
Prawns at my favourite Lisbon restaurant, Cervejaria Ramiro


If you love food, Vietnam will make you cry with delight. Flying into Ho Chi Minh City, enjoy a few days getting to grips with the pace of the place, it’s busy, boisterous, hot and dusty but it’s here you’ll find some great hidden delights, tuck into summer rolls, iced coffee and Banh Mi (a type of Vietnamese baguette). Pho is one of the most commonly eaten dishes throughout the whole of Vietnam for good reason; meat, herbs, vegetables and noodles covered in a soupy broth that’s delicious, filling and cheap. Gòi Cuõn, or fresh spring rolls are not to missed either, you may think you’ve tasted good spring rolls before but they're nothing like the ones you’ll eat in Vietnam. For drinks grab a smoothie, all made with incredible tropical fruits like custard apple, dragonfruit and durian, then blended with ice and condensed milk, they’re so sweet but so good. Buy yours from a street side vendor for around 50p. Vietnamese iced coffee is another winner, again featuring condensed milk, it may sound weird but it sure is refreshing on a hot day.

rice paper spring rolls and chilli sauce in vietnam
Fresh spring rolls in Ho Chi Minh City 


Forget Paris, Lyon is where the food scene really gets interesting, from top class Michelin starred restaurants to tasty cheap eats, whatever your after, you'll find it in Lyon. Some of the best places to eat and drink in Lyon include Le Kitchen Café which use local suppliers to source ingredients. With a menu that changes weekly according to the seasons, bread is from Luc Mano bakery, fruits and vegetables from Le Jardins de Vartan or Pyot & Ondine and coffee is supplied by Mokxa Roasters, so you know what you're getting is made with love. The breakfast menu is short but sweet (literally!), choose from 'On the run' made up of coffee and a cookie, cake or madeline for just 3€ or 'La Granola Chic' for coffee and a bowl of granola served with fresh fruit, acacia honey and farmer’s raw milk yogurt for 5€. For lunch or dinner, book a table at the place to be, La Bijouterie for dim sum, but not as you know it. Try the pork bao buns, beef momos, mushroom, white bean and miso gyoza and haddock and mustard dim sum. The desserts are really interesting too with parsnip ice cream on the menu for my visit.

bowls of granola, pieces of cake and glasses of juice inside le kitchen cafe lyon
Breakfast at Le Kitchen Café, Lyon


Much like Montreal, Toronto is a food lovers playground, whatever you’re after, from ramen and sushi to poutine and pho, this city’s got it all. Cute shop OneZo Tapioca make their own tapioca pearls for insanely good bubble tea, I tried and loved the Brown Sugar Dirty Black Latte. Ramen Isshin on College Street will have you dreaming of their bowls of ramen for months after, try the Black Tan Tan Noodle which comes with a small bowl of black sesame seeds to grind and add to your dish. Cote de Boeuf on Ossington Avenue is the slickest restaurant/wine bar that is great for a date and delicious steak. You'll find Sukoi on Queen St serving fab flavoured ice cream served in fish shaped cones or for something a little more Canadian, don’t miss a beaver tail. These deep-fried flat pastries are stretched out into the shape of a beavers tail, and you can choose toppings such as maple spread or apple cinnamon, they’re delicious and cost around £3.50.

beavertail on wooden table with apple and cinnamon topping in toronto
Don't miss Toronto's Beaver Tails


Street food is a big deal in Singapore and if you’re passionate about food, you’ll soon see why, there’s so many different types of food to choose from and it’s all good. Maxwell Road food centre is the place to go, with over 100 stalls you’re bound to find something you’ll love. Don’t miss the Tian Tian chicken rice (loved by Anthony Bourdain), wanton noodles, oyster cakes and pork satay. For a memorable desert and to help cool down try an Ice Kacang; shaved ice is topped with red beans and agar jelly, then covered with rose syrup and condensed milk, bliss! Make a booking at Rang Mahal or Open Farm Community if you’re after a restaurant instead, both serve creative, yet delicious dishes in gorgeous surroundings.

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