Travelling can be quite tiring, and after days and days on end of lugging around heavy bags, running to catch buses, flights or trains and generally worrying about what to do and how to get there you are bound to be quite exhausted (even if you are travelling in the comfort of Renfe-SNCF en Cooperation’s high-speed trains!) So what better way to end your trip on a high than to put on that fancy outfit that you brought “just in case”, and treat yourself to an exquisite meal in some of world’s most famous restaurants in these marvelous cities. So stop day-dreaming about doing it, book your tables and your Renfe-SNCF en Coopération train tickets and get planning!
El Celler de Can Roca - Girona, Spain
El Celler de Can Roca - Kasia Wyser-Pratte, Wikimedia Commons
Currently holding a striking 3-Michelin stars, and voted the best restaurant in the world by some food critics in 2015, El Celler de Can Roca is definitely not an opportunity you will want to pass up if you enjoy good food. Opened in 1986 by the three Roca brothers, Joan (head chef), Josep (Wine steward) and Jordi (Head of Desserts), the restaurant specializes in traditional Catalan food, with special creative twists and experiments that have earned it its international prestige. Creative does not seem to be sufficient a word to describe the exquisite masterpieces of these three brothers, with weird and wonderful masterpieces such as caramelized onions served on a bonsai tree, small balls of frozen fish stock coated in cocoa butter and even dishes inspired by famous perfumes such as Calvin Klein Eternity and Carolina Herrera. Located in the beautiful city of Girona, this is the perfect way to end a day of sightseeing!
Tickets - Barcelona, Spain
Tickets , picture from Tikets's webpage
Famous chef Adrià takes tapas to a whole other level with his incredible culinary concoctions.
Dining at the Tickets Tapas Bar in Barcelona is the absolute perfect way to experience traditional local cuisine with a genius twists that spice things up and will make it like nothing you have ever tasted before.
And as if this wasn’t reason enough to visit this establishment sometimes known as the “Tapas Fun House”, the magical decoration of the place itself makes it worthwhile all on its own. The dessert room, for example, is decorated in a Willy Wonka Factory meets Candyland style, with big colorful berries hanging from all over the ceiling and the chefs magicking up their masterpieces right in front of your eyes.
Be sure to book as soon as possible though, as seats are limited and sell out as much as 3 or 4 month in advance.
Moments - Barcelona, Spain
Restaurant Moments, picture from Hotel Mandarin Oriental webpage
Located in Passeig de Gracia, a beautiful, trendy area of central Barcelona, Moments flaunts their two-star Michelin cuisine
with pride. The restaurant is run by the world famous Spanish-Catalan Chef Carme Ruscalleda, who is the only female chef in the world to have 7 michelin stars and appointed her son, Raul Balam as head chef. With a very different atmosphere to Tickets, Moments radiates sophistication and elegance with its discreet and tasteful decoration. The restaurant itself is located inside the lobby of the 5-star luxury Mandarin Oriental Hotel, which only adds to its unique air of finesse and grace. Most famous for its tasting menu named “The Trip”, it is composed of 15 different dishes, each claiming to represent a different location in the world. Their dishes are notorious for their magnificently stunning presentation as much as their revolutionary bursts of flavor, and are promised to stun and delight your taste buds into silence. This is a great place to go out for a romantic dinner while travelling with your significant other. Wondering where else to go as a couple? Here are some of the most romantic places to get away as a couple!
L’Arpège - Paris
Restaurant L’Arpège, picture from L’Arpège's webpage
Located in central Paris, Chef Alain Passard
gives us the opportunity to revel in his remarkable talent by dining at L’Arpége. Renowned for its 3 Michelin stars
which it has kept for 20 years, there are unparalleled cuisine works of art awaiting you behind its doors. The restaurant is particularly known as being one of the very few high ranked haute cuisine establishments that steers its focus away from meats and brings greens and vegetables out as the stars of his dishes, making it suitable for both vegans and vegetarians. There are still dishes served including meats, but in significant minority. From tomato Gazpacho served with a scoop of mustard sorbet and yellow pepper soup with creme fraiche to white beetroot tartare with quail egg, the menu will surprise and delight you. Want to visit other museums during your trip to Paris? Check out the most famous artworks you can see while you’re there.
L’Astrance - Paris
Restaurant L’Astrance, picture from L’Astrance webpage
Located on the banks of the Seine river and described by the Michelin Guide 2016 as “an unforgettable culinary experience” with a three Michelin star rating, L’Astrance has been astonishing food appreciators year after year.
Unlike other haute cuisine establishments, there is no menu or à la carte at L’Astrance, as Chef Pascal Barbot prepares a surprise menu which is different everyday.
It’s modest decor and atmosphere assure that its prestige and ranking is based on the quality of the food alone, and seems to wow its clients every time. The restaurant is notorious for being extremely hard to get a reservation, so be sure to plan ahead and try booking a table around two months in advance, if possible. It is sure to be worth the effort!
Alain Ducasse au Plaza Athénée - Paris
Restaurant Alain Ducasse, picture from Alain Ducasse webpage
World class chef Alain Ducasse outdoes himself again, this time in the Plaza Athénée Hotel just steps away from the Champs Élysée in Paris, France. As if his legendary food was not enough to put this place on the map, the sheer glamor and style of the establishment will take you breath away.
The decoration of the space is a masterpiece in iof its own, with 10,000 crystals dangling from the ceiling and exquisite attention to detail resonating fro, every inch. The entire evening will leave you speechless, with absolutely no lack of wow-factors from beginning to end.
With three Michelin stars and described by the Michelin guide as “One of our best addresses, of exceptional standard”, there is not much left to think about other than which evening to set aside to be blown away.