June 3, 2023


Qualified food specialists

The Unsung Food Scenes to Travel for Now

4 min read
The Unsung Food Scenes to Travel for Now

The vineyards of South Downs produce increasingly praiseworthy wines. 

Jenny Zarins

South Downs, U.K.

Wine tourism is on the up in England’s bucolic South Downs, just north of Brighton. Here small-scale vineyards are making increasingly respected wines on the back of the area’s chalky soil and fine climate. Take the much-loved Wiston Estate, which offers vineyard safaris and new restaurant Chalk in a barn-like space. Nearby, The Pig in the South Downs delivers the classic cozy-locavore Pig experience—except this restaurant with rooms is waiting to harvest 4,150 Chardonnay vines in the autumn. Further east, sparkling wine specialists Ridgeview (the Queen served Barack Obama its famous Fitzrovia Rosé) is in the process of opening a design-driven cuboid restaurant and tasting area amid lush gardens. Five minutes down the road, Artelium hired Dermot Sugrue, considered by many to be England’s best sparkling wine maker. —Amber Dalton

KOKS at Ilimanaq Lodge in Greenland

Simon Bajada


This glacial fantasyland has never registered as a foodie hot spot. But neither had the nearby Faroe Islands, until chef Poul Andrias Ziska took over the kitchen at KOKS, using traditional drying, fermenting, and smoking techniques to create hyperlocal menus with dishes like razorbill Wellington and wild-fermented lamb. Now, with the original restaurant closed, the team is headed to Greenland for a residency at Ilimanaq Lodge, a series of oceanfront A-frames in a tiny fishing village reachable only by boat. Ziska is plotting ambitious dishes highlighting the country’s unique ingredients—think seal-blood tartlet and tenderized whale skin. Says Ziska, “If a catch is sustainable, and the animal is treated with respect, we’ll consider it.” —Toby Skinner

Pampanga Province, Philippines 

During occupation, the Spanish colonizers trained the locals in this region just outside Manila as chefs. The craft has been passed down for generations, making Pampanga one of country’s most exciting and consistent foodie scenes, famous for dishes like morcon, (a braised meat roll), tocino (a sweet cured pork), sisig (traditionally prepared with minced pork face), and buro (fermented rice prepared with sautéed shrimp). You can try variations of these and more in a mix of high-low spots throughout the region’s unassuming cities of Angeles City and San Fernando. Everybody’s Café and Ailing Lucing’s Sisig are can’t-miss, no-frills joints, which you’ll want to make reservations in advance for. All meals should end with traditional sweets like turrunos de casoy, a crunchy wafer-like treat prepared with cashew nuts, and the historian, Atching Lillian’s famous heirloom Pan de San Nicolas cookies. —Maryam Jilani

Valley of the Vineyards, Brazil

Settled by Italian immigrants who brought their vinicultural chops to the rolling fields of the Serra Gaúcha region, southern Brazil’s Valley of the Vineyards is a ramble of vines and greenery that feels a world away from the deserts and jungles to the north. Its sparkling whites and earthy reds have been quietly gaining traction, with labels from places like Casa Valduga increasingly landing on top São Paulo wine lists. Stop in at the terra-cotta-roofed tasting room at Miolo to sip their delicate Pinot Noirs, or head down the valley’s winding road for a rare Merlot, courtesy of Marco Luigi. —Jamie Ditaranto


Long famous for its rain forests and reefs, Belize is getting cred for sustainable food experiences that showcase its diverse cultures. On a tour of beach town Placencia, local company Taste Belize might offer guests a creamy seaweed smoothie, a drink linked to innovative farming initiatives, while hotels like Ka’ana Resort are partnering with Maya women chefs to offer traditional cooking classes around a fire hearth. Also, it’s nice to know that in 2020 Belize outlawed violent gill-net fishing, which means that the catch of the day cooked into chef Jennie Staines’s yellow curry at Elvi’s Kitchen in San Pedro is always from reliable fisherfolk using sustainable methods. —Julia Eskins

Crispy pork with Mangda paste at 80/20 Restaurant

80/20 Restaurant

80/20’s Chef Andrew Martin

80/20 Restaurant

Talad Noi, Bangkok

The pandemic may have cooled Bangkok’s hottest foodie neighborhoods, but this district straddling the Chao Phraya River is sizzling again. Talad Noi has been racking up culinary cred since the mid-2010s, with the arrival of spots like locavore trailblazer 80/20 and nose-to-tail-touting 100 Mahaseth, but its second wave has finally rolled in. At Aksorn, Nahm veteran David Thompson’s tasting menus are inspired by midcentury recipes, while at newcomer Small Dinner Club, Thai-born Sareen Rojanamatin pairs local ingredients with novel techniques—think frozen tom yum and dry-aged Muscovy duck with banana. Even cocktails have had an epicurean upgrade: At Mahaniyom Cocktail Bar, they come loaded with dried squid and coffee cherry husks from up north. —Chris Schalkx

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