When you plan your next solo, romantic, or family getaway, it's likely food will figure prominently in your travel logistics. Sampling the local fare is as integral to traveling as visiting renowned attractions. So, if you're looking for a getaway with some international flare, here are four United States cities that will impress you with their extensive selection of international cuisines.
Minneapolis–St. Paul, Minnesota
The Twin Cities are perfect for a foodie getaway: you get two for the price of one. With the area's rich Northern European heritage, the largest Somali community outside of Somalia, and a sizable Hmong population, you'll find great food options here.
Two amazing restaurants in Minneapolis to enjoy Somali food are Daalo Grill and Safari Restaurant. The first is famous for its signature roasted goat entrees and Somali rice pilaf, while the second is known for its exceptional chicken, steak, and fish platters. Be sure to try the sambuzas at Safari Restaurant; these are deep-fried pastry pockets filled with either beef or vegetables. Vegetarians will especially appreciate the meatless sambuza topped with bizbaz sauce.
Looking for something a little more Eastern? If so, check out Thai Garden in St. Paul and enjoy specialty curry dishes, stir-fried entrees, and a variety of fried noodle selections. While you're at it, don't miss out on the authentic Vietnamese pho at Trieu Chau.
For succulent German sausages, good beer, and the opportunity to get your polka on, head to Gasthof Zur Gemutlichkeit in Minneapolis. Be sure to try the Bavarian House platter, which comes with spaetzle, mashed potatoes, red cabbage, two salads, sauerkraut, and Bavarian dumplings.
If you'd like to sample a hearty meal from Ecuador and the Andes Mountains, check out the unassuming Chimborazo, also in Minneapolis. Meanwhile, St. Paul is home to Moscow on the Hill, which offers authentic Russian dishes and a great selection of infused vodkas.
Finally, if you can't decide what type of international cuisine you'd like for dinner, head to the World Street Kitchen in Minneapolis, where you can savor food from Asia to the Caribbean.
When you think of Texas, you may envision the most popular BBQ and Tex–Mex offerings. However, remember that Houston is a melting pot with much to offer, where you can sample the most exciting cuisines from around the globe.
Head to Cafe Brussels, where you can enjoy authentic Belgian dishes such as snails in garlic butter, onion soup with cheese, and mussels drenched in a variety of delicious sauces. An example of the latter is the moules bisque, which consists of mussels braised in cream and Cognac.
For rustic Portuguese dishes, try Oporto Fooding House & Wine, where you can sample dishes like wood-grilled octopus, stuffed piquillo peppers, and goat meatballs.
Meanwhile, at Dong Bei Restaurant, you can sample scrumptious Chinese dishes from the northeastern region of Dongbei, an area rich in cuisine with Korean and Russian influences. Try specialties such as fried mutton with vegetables, braised pork with vermicelli, and fried chicken gizzards with cumin.
Houston also has several options for those who want to sample food from different parts of Africa. Head to the Trinity African Bar & Grill to try attieke, a fermented cassava dish that often accompanies delicious entrees featuring goat, chicken, or fish. If your taste buds call for North African cuisine, you'll enjoy an authentic Egyptian meal at Dandanah Cafe, where you can try koshary, one of Egypt's national dishes. Koshary mainly consists of rice, lentils, stewed tomatoes and macaroni. Many people enjoy topping koshary with deep-fried onions and garbanzos.
Los Angeles, California
The close proximity of Los Angeles to Asia, the South Pacific, amd Mexico has contributed to the city's reputation for international cuisines. Additionally, the celebrity chefs in the Los Angeles area often create exciting new takes on popular international dishes. If you've never explored the food scene in Los Angeles, you're in for a great treat.
For cheap eats and arguably the best tacos ever, head to Beverly Boulevard on the north end of Koreatown for some cart tacos. Each night, vendors turn shopping carts into grills by attaching small burners and griddles to the carts. What you'll get is fresh tacos that will bowl you over with their gamut of intoxicating flavors. If street tacos aren't your thing, head to Park's BBQ in Koreatown for galbi, grilled beef short ribs.
For regional specialties from the Yucatan in Mexico, head to Chichen Itza to try one of its tortas, tamales, or marinated pork entrees. For Eastern flavors, check out some of the best sushi in Los Angeles at Q. Owner and chef Hiroyuki Naruke is a Tokyo native, so be prepared to enjoy the most authentic Edo-style sushi and sashimi this side of the Pacific Ocean.
Los Angeles also has a sizable Persian community, so you'll find several Persian restaurants in the city. For a taste of the Middle East, head to Shaherzad, known its succulent kebabs and fragrant meat stews. Los Angeles also offers The Little Jewel of New Orleans (yes, it's really located in Los Angeles), where you can enjoy poutine, a Canadian dish consisting of French fries topped with cheese curds and brown gravy.
New York City, New York
If you throw a dart at a map or stop a spinning globe with your finger, you'll be able to find food in New York City from any country you land on, almost every single time.
Areas of the city such as Chinatown and Little Italy provide excellent options. However, New York has far more epicurean selections to tempt your taste buds. If you desire to try some traditional British pub food, such as bangers and mash, head to one of the hundreds of pubs throughout the city, such as Cock & Bull. You'll love the codfish chowders, cottage pies, steak sandwiches, and fish & chips on the menu.
If you enjoy Mediterranean and Greek food, head to Queens to dine at Taverna Kyclades, for an authentic home-style meal. Looking for something a little more sophisticated? If so, pamper yourself at one of the highest-rated restaurants in the United States. Make reservations for Le Bernadin, where you'll enjoy French-inspired seafood dishes created by the restaurant's famous head chef, Eric Ripert.
For classic French bistro-style tastes, visit La Grenouille, where you can enjoy dishes like duck confit or Chilean sea bass with foie gras. Finally, celebrate Eastern European cuisine by heading to Veselka in the East Village. Be sure to sample specialties such as borscht, beef stroganoff, veal goulash, stuffed cabbage, and Ukrainian pierogis.