With The International Kitchen office based in Chicago, we love our Summers, in no small part due to the fact we can enjoy a meal and a glass of wine or two outdoors. So as Summer winds down, we’ve been reminiscing about some of our favorite places we’ve dined al fresco, or outdoors, during our cooking vacation travels and scouting trips abroad.
One of Richard’s favorite outdoor dining memories: “Sitting on a beach in Barcelona, and splitting three bottles of wine among friends.” But that’s just one, of many. After all, as long as the sun is out, and there’s no rain in sight, chances are you can find a great place to grab a bite outdoors, whether you’re dining out on a terrace or planning a picnic — and that goes for just about any city or place you visit.
Peg’s favorite place for dining out in the beautiful sunshine: Sardinia. “So many great memories!” she said. “But especially on the Costa Verde.” Elsewhere in Italy, one of her top spots is the Jewish Quarter in Rome, where there are plenty of restaurants that offer some outdoor seating while enjoying some of the best dishes in all of Italy.
As for me, my heart belongs to Paris when it comes to dining outdoors. While all of my trips to this city of light tend to fall in the cooler months (think March and October), there’s absolutely nothing like sitting outside at a Parisian cafe, enjoying an café and a croissant (or a full meal). It also helps that many cafes will even supply a blanket – if you need it! That’s how much eating outdoors is taken seriously in this bustling and beautiful city.
But cafes aren’t your only option. Grab a crepe, sandwich, terrine, or even just some cheese and bread at the local shop, and then head to one of the city’s many parks to enjoy the view — and some people watching too. The Champ de Mars, home to the Eiffel Tower, is just one of many places where a picnic is perfectly acceptable and enjoyable.
What’s your favorite place to dine outdoors while traveling abroad?
By Liz Hall
Sign up to receive our newsletter, which includes travel tips, recipes, promotions, and information on our best culinary vacations.