Category Archives: Food and Beverage

Enhancing Your Study Abroad Experience

By: Victoria Driver

Crazy, fast, overwhelming are probably all words you will use to describe the first few weeks in the new city you call home when you choose to study abroad, but it is worth every second of the madness. You probably weren’t sure what to expect when coming to a new country with a new language and culture. I experienced this culture shock myself, but within a month, I’ve already begun to learn the “ins and outs” of surviving abroad and have organized my tips and tricks down to the essentials

Hydration is key With so much going on around you, it’s easy to forget about what your body needs to stay healthy. In most of Europe, water at restaurants and eateries comes at an extra price.  If you aren’t a fan of tap water, buy a large bottle of water from your local grocery store and make sure you stay hydrated. Your mood will improve, and your body will thank you.drink-water-stay-hydrated-abroad-student-travel-tips

We can all use a bit of beauty sleep Europe has a bustling nightlife for Study Abroad students. If you go out too often and begin functioning on limited amounts of sleep you will run the risk of getting sick. The key to fueling your love for nightlife and being at your best to explore Europe is to find balance. Planning is key to every aspect of life abroad, so try to map out the nights you spend out on the town by planning your week and nightlife events beforehand. This way, you will be sure to elevate your social experience.

how to stay well rested abroad, getting enough sleep when traveling, study abroad tips, student travel health

Exercise is good for the soul Homesickness and culture shock are two of the most common reasons that students struggle with their Study Abroad experience. Therefore, try exercising at least once a week to produce natural endorphins. Join the local gym (If you’re also studying abroad in Florence, the Swan Gymnastic Center is great). You can also jog around your city – there is so much to see in your city and only so much time to see it – you may even start to enjoy your weekly exercises just for the sights.

how to stay healthy when abroad, exercise when traveling, student travel tips

With just these few simple tips and reminders, you can enhance your time in your host city and your study abroad experience!

The 5 Best Restaurants in Rome Center

By: Peter Gerolamo

Rome has an endless supply of bars, restaurants, and cafes to choose from. From quick stop-and-go cafes to formal dining, you can find basically everything under the sun in the Eternal City. As a student living in Prati, I did most of my shopping and eating near my residence. As a college graduate working in Rome, I’m fortunate enough to live right by Ponte Sisto. Here is a list of my 5 go-to food establishments within reasonable walking distance from Ponte Sisto.

  • Baffetto: A pizzeria with two locations, one near Abbey Theatre and one in Campo, Baffetto is my go to take-away pizza. It is different than normal Italian pizza in that the crust is much thinner. An entire margherita is only 6 euro and you wait no more than 5 minutes for it to be ready.food to eat in rome, restaurant recommendations in ponte sisto area in rome, restaurants for study abroad students, travel food tips
  • Dar Poeta: My favorite sit-down pizzeria, Dar Poeta is located right behind Piazza Trilussa in Trastevere. My two favorites to order here are the linguna de foco (spicy salami) and the Superformaggi. Dar Poeta is a usually crowded at nights, and there is a reason for that. You’ll see why once you’ve tried it out for yourself.food to eat in rome, restaurant recommendations in ponte sisto area in rome, restaurants for study abroad students, travel food tips
  • Il Duca: Located right next to the popular abroad student trattoria “Tonys”, Il Duca is where I had my final meal as an abroad student. They have a wide array of pasta dishes to choose from and I highly recommend getting the fried veggies as an appetizer. Overall, Il Duca provides a great atmosphere to dine with a larger group. food to eat in rome, restaurant recommendations in ponte sisto area in rome, restaurants for study abroad students, travel food tips
  • Fast Food Eat Street Food: When I am looking for something that reminds me of food back in the States, I get the Esquilino burger from “Eat”. With cheddar and bacon, the burgers at Eat are delicious and normally between 5 and 6 euro. The French fries are a nice compliment to any sandwich.food to eat in rome, restaurant recommendations in ponte sisto area in rome, restaurants for study abroad students, travel food tips
  • Giolitti: A gem in terms of Gelato shops, Giolitti is located near the Pantheon. I recommend all the flavors, however my go-to flavors are banana and nutella. Giolitti is a great place to go after dinner to enjoy amazing gelato while walking home.food to eat in rome, restaurant recommendations in ponte sisto area in rome, restaurants for study abroad students, travel food tips

8 Ways to Eat Potatoes in 8 European Countries

By: Austin Davis

It was my first trip to Conad living in Italy. (Newbie mistake number one – I didn’t even bring my own bag). I wandered into the vegetable section and scanned the colorful bins in search of the one food I ate on a daily basis back in the States: sweet potatoes. Not a single orange potato was found amongst the rows of various varieties of white ones. In a panic, I ran to Carrefour… Still nothing. I found a few at a small vegetable stand a few weeks later, but in the meantime, I made peace with the fact that I would have to settle for the sweet potato’s bland relative, the potato. Since my grocery store panic, I’m beginning to understand why the potato is such a staple in Europe. In my travels, I’ve encountered tons of unique uses for the fiber-packed wonder food. If you’re a picky eater, chances are you can find a potato dish in any city you visit that you will enjoy. Here are 7 ways to eat potatoes in 7 of Europe’s most popular cities!

  1. Brussels: French Fries

Contrary to popular belief, French fries are neither French nor American. The original and tastiest fries can be found in the beautiful country of Belgium! Served in a paper cone and slathered with the sauce of your choice, fries make a great snack at any point of the day or night. Try them with mayo instead of ketchup for a more authentic experience!

 food recommendations, europe, best potato dishes in Amsterdam, Paris, Interlaken, Florence, Barcelona, Brussels, Krakow, London

  1. Amsterdam: Stamppot

Stamppot is a traditional Dutch meal consisting of mashed potatoes, kale, and sausage. You can find it at traditional dutch restaurants like Moeder’s, or pre-made at the Albert Heijn to grab and go.

best potato dishes in europe, recommendations for potato dishes in London, Paris, Amsterdam, Berlin, Krakow, Interlaken, Florence, Barcelona

  1. Florence: Potato Gnocchi

So maybe Italy isn’t known for potatoes, but make no mistake, you can find them here too! The best way to enjoy potatoes in Italy is baked inside another Italian delicacy: pasta. Potato gnocchi is heavenly, particularly when drowned in cheese. You can find some delicious cheesy potato gnocchi at Osteria Gatto e la Volpe in Via Ghibellina

 food recommendations, europe, best potato dishes in Amsterdam, Paris, Interlaken, Florence, Barcelona, Brussels, Krakow, London

  1. Barcelona: Patatas Bravas

You can’t go to Barcelona without eating tapas, and no tapas meal is complete without a plate of patatas bravas. These roasted potatoes are covered with mayonnaise or aioli and a smoky hot tomato sauce. Try them at any tapas bar in Barcelona, you can’t go wrong.

 food recommendations, europe, best potato dishes in Amsterdam, Paris, Interlaken, Florence, Barcelona, Brussels, Krakow, London

  1. Interlaken: Potato Rösti

Every time I order rösti, I tell myself there is no way I can possibly finish it. Twenty minutes later, there I am again, staring at an empty plate within my ski pants had an elastic waistband. I never fail to instantly forget that regret and do it again the next day because it’s that good (it’s worth the calories every time). During a long day on the mountain, a mound of hash browns with cheese and meat just feels – and tastes – so right.

 food recommendations, europe, best potato dishes in Amsterdam, Paris, Interlaken, Florence, Barcelona, Brussels, Krakow, London

  1. Krakow: Perogies

Perogies are like dumplings, except they’re commonly filled with potato and pan fried. Sign me up.

 food recommendations, europe, best potato dishes in Amsterdam, Paris, Interlaken, Florence, Barcelona, Brussels, Krakow, London

  1. Crisps

Not only do the British drive on the opposite side of the road – they also like to confuse us with the naming of their potato dishes. In Britain, potato “chips” are called crisps. In Britain, to order french fries, you’ll really be asking for chips (a little weird to get used to, right?). Remember that the next time you order a plate of fish and chips.

 food recommendations, europe, best potato dishes in Amsterdam, Paris, Interlaken, Florence, Barcelona, Brussels, Krakow, London

  1. Paris: Whipped and Mashed

No one knows how to cook with cream and butter quite like the French. Which helps to explain why the mashed potatoes that come out of Parisian kitchens are some of the lightest, silkiest, and richest you’ll find.

 food recommendations, europe, best potato dishes in Amsterdam, Paris, Interlaken, Florence, Barcelona, Brussels, Krakow, London

The next time you are wandering around a new city, unsure of what to eat and struggling with all the choices, remember that your friend “the potato” will have your back no matter what part of Europe you’re exploring.

 

Top Three Places To Eat In Barcelona

By Abby & Walter Instagram: @picnicsnplaces

Barcelona

1) Bar Martinez If you’re looking for authentic Spanish food, Bar Martinez is your spot. The bright terrace restaurant is located at the foot of Montjuic with breathtaking views over the city, port, and sea. They are known for their paella and rice dishes, which are fabulous, but be sure to go with a big group to get the most bang for your buck. We had the Mature Aged Steak sprinkled with malden salt, served with three dipping sauces — horseradish, garlic aioli, and au jus. It was perfectly cooked and worth the steep price tag. If you want to avoid a big bill, go for happy hour and sip on the rose cava (8 euro per glass) while you enjoy the stunning views of the city.

Barcelona, where to eat, restaurants, spain

2) Caporal Two words: cava sangria. Caporal swaps red wine typically used in sangria for the Spanish version of champagne, also known as cava. This is the bubbly cousin of the traditional Spanish drink that you need in your life. Located right off Las Ramblas, the super friendly staff and cozy atmosphere makes this restaurant the perfect afternoon pick-me-up spot. If you’re hungry, get the delicious paella, the serving is quite large and inexpensive. If you’re in the mood for something lighter, order a couple of tapas. Also, if you’re not a fan of sangria, try the refreshing mojitos! Everything we tried was phenomenal, you can’t go wrong here!

Paella-Barcelona-Spain-Cava-Sangria-Tapas-Mojito

3) Ocaña We stumbled upon this beautiful, bright restaurant while strolling around the Gothic Quarter, the artistic atmosphere is what drew us in. Turns out, Ocaña pays tribute to Jose Perez Ocana, the brilliant painter, activist, and defender of Spanish freedom from the 1970s. The colorful seats and large wooden tables on the terrace look out on one of Barcelona’s most beautiful squares, Plaça Reial. Their cocktails are wonderful, but the real magic is on the dessert menu. We tried their crema catalana, the famous dessert from Catalonia, consisting of a custard base and a caramelized, crisp sugar topping. We also tried the chocolate cake with dulce de leche, served with berries and sorbet. After you eat, you can grab a beer from the guys in the street (never pay more than $1.50 for street beer in Barcelona) and sit on the fountain in the center of the square. You can sit there for hours watching live music and dancing throughout the square. A wonderful find in a fun square in Barcelona.

Bacelona-Spain-Gothic-Quarter-Crema-Catalana

About Walter & Kelly: Growing up, both of our families emphasized the importance of eating meals together around the table. We believe it is essential not only to eat good food, but to enjoy each meal. Too many meals are shoved in your mouth while driving down the freeway, or microwaved in a plastic tray and eaten in a cubicle. Eat outside, eat somewhere with a view, find restaurants with wonderful ambiance. We are part of the revolution of food, join us!

Facebook Page: www.facebook.com/picnicsnplaces

Website: www.picnicsnplaces.com

5 Things to Do in Ibiza You Won’t Find on Your Average Travel Website

To most people, places like Ibiza are mainly known for their beaches and nightlife, so what usually ends up happening is that we revolve our itineraries around water adventures and beach activities. Ibiza is also a popular spot for the rich and famous, influencing many a holidaymaker to travel to the same places as their favourite celebrities, according to Holiday Hypermarket. But there is much more to this hotspot than the sand, sea and celebrities.

While there’s nothing wrong with spending your entire trip on the beach, Ibiza does have various attractions if you head inland. That’s not to say you can’t still enjoy the stunning beaches that Ibiza has to offer though.

From celebrity vacation pictures to reality TV stars documenting their beach party escapades, we can’t help but be intrigued by these picturesque holiday destinations. Even the games we play tend to put our focus on these idyllic beaches, with apps like Surf or Die taking you around the world to the places where the best waves are found, or to Hawaii through Aloha! Cluster Pays from gaming company Slingo, we seem to be obsessed with the overriding need to remind ourselves of beach holidays through different medias.

So save the relaxation and sunbathing for the first and last days of your trip, and try to fill in your week with as many land activities as possible. Here are a few ideas to help you compose your itinerary:

1. The Punta Arabí Hippy Market in Es Caná

Because of Ibiza’s artistic roots, there is an abundance of hippy markets all around the island, but the ones that you definitely want to check out are the bigger markets, which include the Punta Arabí that is and open every Wednesday in Es Caná. Here, you’ll find the work of artisans that include leather goods, antiques, trinkets, jewellery, island wear and even modern clothing lines.

Ibiza Hippie Market

2. The Back Streets of Ibiza Town

Getting lost on your travels isn’t always such a bad thing, especially if you’re aimlessly wandering along the streets of Ibiza Town. As Emily Oakden shares with the Huffington Post, the back streets of Santa Eulalia and San Antonio offer an alternative insight into Ibiza life, as you discover shops and other local finds that you normally wouldn’t see on the oceanfront and more commercial areas of the island.

Ibiza_town,_Dalt_Vila_-_panoramio3. Horseback Riding in Central and Northern Ibiza

Saddle up and see another side of Ibiza. Believe it or not, this beach destination does have some countryside you can visit. Escape the hustle and bustle of Ibiza Town and San Antonio for a magical horseback ride through peaceful hills and beautiful scenery.

horse

4. Escape Rooms Ibiza in Bajo

Escape rooms are all the rage right now, and if you’re up for indoor activities that will mentally challenge you, head over to Bajo and put yourself to the test in Escape Rooms Ibiza. There are plenty of rooms for you to check out, such as Wonderland, but if you really want to feel the thrills, The Zombie Apocalypse game may be a more suitable choice.

escape room

5. History at Dalt Vila

Also known as the old part of Ibiza city, Dalt Vila is a great place to soak in all the culture and heritage of the island. It’s recommended that you spend your late afternoon here to witness spectacular views of the cathedral, Ibiza Castle, city walls and Roman ruins. And when the evening comes around, you can walk around the old city streets, which look beautiful when they’re lit up at night.

commons eglesia sant pere