Where Are We?
We travel pretty much non-stop. Yup, 300+ hotel nights & something north of 1,000 chances to dine out every year. So, we see tons of great stuff! Here we’ve narrowed down our favorites...
Most are obscure, some are well-known; but rest assured that they all hit the spot. If you happen to be traveling through, be forewarned, you might bump into us at one of these joints.
It's a big big world, y'all
Gondola Gondola Fantastic SE Asian joint with affordable Hibiki 17.
The Franklin Hotel Huge rooms, great style, super affordable.
Clever Little Tailor Many choices on Peel St, we suggest this one.
FermentAsian She cooks SE Asian cuisine, he runs the room & a super dope wine list. Fantastic.
Fino Go here for lunch, eat very well & drink lots of sherry. Then visit Seppeltsfield (see below.)
Apex Bakery Longest running (c.1924) continuously fired oven in OZ. Pasties!!
Tanunda Hotel The TH. Best Cooper’s Pale you’ll ever have. Order a bag of Salt & Vinegar crisps & play pool.
Seppeltsfield Winery With port from every vintage going back to 1878, prepare to be impressed.
Otto Ristorante Campari & Soda. Bottle of vermentino. Whole fish. Sit on the pier outside, bask.
Golden Century There are tanks lining the walls with mud crabs bigger than small children, & a wine list filled with back vintages of Barossa Shiraz & Bordeaux. Makes sense.
Blue Hotel at Woolloomooloo Pier Stay here & eat at Otto every day.
EC, Galápagos Islands
Galápagos Islands: If you like animals, this is the best place on the planet. Go before it disappears.
La Tupina As you walk in, there are potatoes being roasted over an open fire, which is connected to a system of pulleys, fuelling the spit which is roasting birds… It’s great.
L’Univerre You’re welcome.
Maison Fredon After lunch at La Tupina, retire to their insanely chic rooms across the street.
Corsica: Go in winter, get a stick shift, pretend you’re in the Indy 500.
Merle Inside Les Halles, squeeze in & get down to business.
Le Petit Verdot Japanese sensibilities meet French cuisine; great wine list.
Clamato Septime’s little brother, and by far the superior child. Fried whole fish & Champagne.
Le Dome Go for the bouillabaisse & learn a thing or two about fish service.
Le Repaire des Cartouche Dark, cozy, soulful French cooking.
Le Cafe des Musees In case you need a late-night bistro bite.
David Toutain Fine dining with a light touch; beautiful seafood.
Bistrot Paul Bert Best bistro in the world, hands down. Patina, great food, super fun wine list.
L’Ecailler du Bistrot Paul Bert’s next door seafood joint, ask for the Paul Bert wine list.
Le Baratin Great.
Relais Saint Germain Sexy rooms hovering over a great bistro & fantastic wine and snack bar.
Candelaria In case you need your agave fix in Paris.
EAT / STAY / PLAY:
Michel Troisgros Complete magic. Full stop.
Greenland: Next time you fly over the poles, open your g*dd@m windows!
Hong Kong Old Restaurant The smoked chicken (must order a few days ahead) will be one of the best things you’ve ever eaten. Shanghai Cuisine.
Luk Yu Tea House If Hong Kong had a mafia (& they may), this would be their hangout. Don’t let the lovely Art Deco facade fool you. And don’t let those punky waiters get in your grill. The world is yours. Dim Sum.
LockCha Tea House Located in Hong Kong Park, this is the coolest place ever to learn about tea… Great selection of teas as well as food made to go with them.
Spring Deer Restaurant The best Peking Duck of your life. BYOB
Intercontinental On the Kowloon side, overlooking the entire HK harbor. Exceptional service.
Iceland: Reminds you that the center of our planet is liquid.
Costanza Hostaria Hidden down a few side streets, all about the fish and veg.
La Campana Rome’s oldest restaurant (c.1518) Very staid, very delicious.
Hotel Locarno Art Deco masterpiece, great patio, away from the noise & bustle.
Sant’Eustachio Get a shakerato, feel like you’re in a movie.
Holbox Island: Go swim with the biggest fish on the planet, and eat at Viva Zapata (ask for Noa and tell her we sent you.)
Marco Polo Awesome hidden patio, oven-baked seafood. Micheladas.
Itanoni A love letter to corn.
Casa Oaxaca You want the one within the hotel (see below.) It is GREAT.
Casa Oaxaca You may decide to travel to Oaxaca just to stay here. Pool, silence, micheladas, fantastic service.
Camino de Mezcal: Coming Soon!
Cafe de Klepel One of our favorite spots in town. Super cozy bistro vibe with an exciting wine list and delicious French-inspired set menu.
Rijsel This is our jam. The ideal wine dinner: roast chicken, greens and fried potatoes alongside a super well-priced, well-stocked list and great service.
Gebr. Hartering- On one of the most idyllic, picturesque canal corners in town, the Brothers Hartering offer an ever-changing, fantastic set menu with a killer wine list.
Bistro Neuf- One of our favorite spots for lunch; easy-going and delicious bistro food.
Worst Delicious comfort food & an excitingly deep wine list.
Marius- The grown-up, next door sister to Worst, with a full set menu and an equally great selection of wine.
The Lobby Fizeaustraat- Slightly out of town, totally worth the Uber or bike jaunt. The food is great and the wine list will reward your travel.
Sichuan Food- Best Peking Duck menu we know of. Tell Raymond we sent you.
4850- A Nordic-inspired wine bar with yummy snacks and a ridiculously affordable, exciting wine list.
De Kas- Slightly further out of town, a great place to spend a languid afternoon in the greenhouse-feeling space with a veggie-heavy set menu and plenty of Cotat.
BAK- Located in a seemingly non-descript industrial building, head upstairs to find yourself overlooking the river IJ. There is no beef, pork or chicken served, although you may find pigeon or deer, as they only use wild meats. Other than a course of meat, all else is vegetable-focused. Great Champagne options as well as natural wines.
*Beer, Cocktails & Coffee*
Cafe de Dokter- Founded in 1798 and run by the same family for 6 generations. Sure, they have beer, they also have a fun selection of whiskies and a large hunk of cheese and house made smoked ox sausage. The smallest bruin cafe in town, literally dripping in cobwebs and lore.
De Wildeman- If you’re a beer-head, this is your spot. Ever-changing taps as well as a list of ~250 bottled beers. This crew knows their beer; they have decanting baskets for their sour beers. Get schooled here.
Arendsnest Head here if you're after Dutch beer only; they also pair meats & cheeses with each beverage upon request. Ask for advice & let them show you the goods.
Cafe Gollem Fantastic selection of local beers on tap with a few locations around town.
Hiding in Plain Sight- If there’s one cocktail bar we’d recommend, this is it. Great style, great cocktails, great location.
Toki- Best coffee joint in town.
Hotel Pulitzer- Consisting of 25 connecting canal houses: great rooms, super chic, excellent (public!) central gardens and comfy cocktail bar when the cool months have you reaching for boozy comfort.
The Lobby at Hotel V on Nes- The hotel rooms are great, and the restaurant is another one of our favorite lunch spots. Plush interiors, yummy food and a welcoming staff has made us regulars. The sister restaurant at Fizeaustraat has a more formal menu and a deeper wine list. Both are great.
Sloepdelen The Zipcar of canal boats. How they allow someone to anonymously ‘order’ a boat, pick it up, & drive themselves around in a city with a very lenient consumption policy is mind-blowing. Take advantage before they realize this & shut it down. There are many such rental companies... also check out Mokumboot, or if you'd like a private boat with your own skipper, Electric Boats Amsterdam.
Sauna Deco The place is decked out in the salvaged Art Deco pieces of the old Au Bon Marche, & you get to walk around naked. What else is there to say?
*Our favorite LGBTQ joints*
Cafe t’Mandje- Opened in 1927 by a lesbian named Aunt Bet, Cafe t’Mandje is our go-to queer bar with super positive, cuddly, beer-loving vibes.
Bar Exit- Our favorite LGBTQ dance club; dive-bar-feeling, open late, welcoming to everyone… we’ll see you there. Their sister spot next door, Nyx, leans more towards a clubby feel if you’re not feelin’ the chill dive vibe.
*Want a View??*
A’Dam Lookout- Head over to Noord on the super-quick free ferry and visit the Lookout on top floors of the A’dam building. The view over Amsterdam is amazing, and you can ride swings that fling you over the edge of the building.
W Hotel W Lounge- If you don’t feel like taking a ferry, take an elevator to the top floor of the W Hotel and view Amsterdam from there.
I AMsterdam- Want to move here? Not sure when trash pick-up is? Wondering what is going on in town today? It's all there.
Bar Cañete We’d eat here every single day if we could.
La Boqueria Sure, you can walk the market, but the real deal are the restaurants inside the market. Bustling, fresh, delicious.
Hotel Bagues We didn’t look for a gym here. Instead we sat on the roof drinking gin & tonics the size of small basketballs.
Monvínic Fantastic wine bar with a great wine list.
SP, Basque Country
BASQUE COUNTRY, SP
Asador Etxebarri You have no idea. The mountain view, the smoke, the simple, perfect food… worth the country drive to the middle of nowhere.
Elkano Love letter to turbot. In spring the anchovy are chased into the bay by the turbot, then the turbot taste like anchovy. There is the sun-side, and the sand-side, and they both taste very different… You will learn A TON.
Cumbres Mayores Extensive menu of traditional tapas & a fun list of sherry.
Parador Hotel Atlantico On the tip of old Cadiz, overlooking the ocean.
SP, El Puerto de Santa María
EL PUERTO DE SANTA MARÍA, SP
Aponiente The best wine-paired menu ever; it’s brilliant (you can even have an entirely sherry-paired meal.)
El Faro Still have yet to go...
Cruz Blanca Sit outside, watch Jerez cruise by, drink gazpacho.
Bar Juanito Order Valdespino Inocente. Order another. Have some jamon.
La Moderna Great for breakfast or tapas; head to the back to see part of the old city wall, tucked inside the restaurant’s interior.
La Carboná Steak. Steak. Steak.
La Dolores Best Mahou on tap in Spain alongside the best anchovy snack in the world. No music overhead; just the clinking of glasses, laughter, & that beer...
La Venencia Old-school, 1930’s-style bar with nothin’ but a few Sherries, a few tapas, a very friendly cat, & all the soul you could hope for. Do not tip (seriously.)
La Posada de la Villa Since 1642, & you believe it when you walk in. The spirit of the place lives in the service, the food, & a great Spanish wine list. Order the Pimientos del Piquillo & fall in love with simplicity.
O'Pazo One of the great fish joints on the planet. We went for lunch & immediately thereafter asked for a reservation for dinner that night.
Casa Gallega Order a whole fish & get schooled on how to respectfully (& beautifully) break it down. Galician cuisine.
SP, Sanlúcar de Barrameda
SANLÚCAR DE BARRAMEDA, SP
Casa Bigote After eating all of the seafood you can, head out to the boardwalk for some gin-tonics & the sunset.
Casa Balbino Tortillitas de camarones. Jamon. Sherry. Give thanks.
El Campero A temple built to tuna. There is even a map of the body; turns out you can eat every single piece of it.
Taberna der Guerrita Fantastic bar with tapas up front (run by the dad)...
La Sacristía ... And the best sherry shop in the world in back (run by the son.)
SP, San Sebastián
SAN SEBASTIÁN, SP
Ibai Still have yet to go…
Saltxipi Get the spider crab & roll up your sleeves; every single part of the crab is divine.
Rekondo That wine list tho.
Ganbara Mushrooms upon mushrooms.
The Loaf Your best bet at getting a decent coffee in all of Spain. Gros district.
Bar Eslava Excellent tapas, both traditional & modern.
El Rinconcillo Oldest restaurant in Spain (c.1670); Sevilla’s version of McSorley’s.
Bar las Golondrinas (1) Head across the bridge to take in this traditional tapas spot, decorated in painted tiles: the specialty in Triana.
UK, Scotland, Islay
Islay: Pure magic. Worth more time than you think.
US, AZ, Canyon de Chelly
Canyon de Chelly: You can race up & down the canyon on some bad-ass horses, or you can chill & walk. Either way, LOOK UP.
US, AZ, Tucson
Mariscos Chihuahua Best Mexican food in Tucson, maybe Arizona. It’s all about the seafood cocktails & LOTS of hot sauce.
Hotel Congress What The Chelsea must’ve been like before it wasn’t itself anymore.
Sonoran Desert Museum Cooler than you could possibly imagine.
US, CA, Death Valley
Death Valley: Alluvial fans, baby! Some of the best geology on earth.
US, CA, Los Angeles
Mori Sushi Make an early res, eat some of the most beautiful food of your life, get on a red-eye home. Win.
Fishing With Dynamite The best raw bar recipe: beautiful ocean light, fresh catch, great music & a sense of humor. Manhattan Beach.
Cora's Coffee Shop You can get tortilla soup for breakfast, and it's on the beach. Done & done. Santa Monica.
Capo Great cooking, great wine list, yummy deals to be found. Expensive? Yes. Delicious? Yup. Santa Monica.
US, CA, Monterey Bay Aquarium
Monterey Bay Aquarium: You’re still a kid & you know it. Drink something nice at Passionfish & go look at super beautiful stuff.
US, CA, San Francisco
Swan’s Oyster Depot Coolest restaurant in America. 100+ years old. Cash only. They open at 10:30am; get there early & drink muscadet with your breakfast. Seriously.
Colibri Just off the plane & starving? Guac, fresh tortillas, a shot of Sombra & a beer.
Izakaya Rintaro If you live in SF, you know; if not: now you do. Excellent.
Absinthe Brasserie Great bar, great wine list, & bangin' weekday specials. Hit it up for lunch & drip into dusk.
US, CO, Basalt
El Korita If you happen to be driving between Boulder and Aspen, drop in here, order the Korita Tostada & a Michelada. Extreme spice & a lil refreshment to help you survive.
US, CO, Boulder
Efrain's II Best Mexican this side of the border. Get the Costillas.
Basta Better pie than any in NYC. Yeah, I said it.
US, FL, Alligator Alley
Alligator Alley: Watch your toes.
US, FL, Miami
Japanese Market In a strip mall lives a Japanese Market . In the Market lives a tiny sushi bar in the corner. Walk to the back, grab a 16oz Sapporo, & wait til your name is called.
Mandolin Aegean Bistro Sit on the patio, eat with your hands, suck the bones.
SLS South Beach Eat on the patio, order the Embutido de Iberico & gazpacho for breakfast, along with a glass of Manzanilla.
Double Threat Fishing Charters Really cool, very capable kids with great equipment and moxie for days. #nofishissafe
Locust Projects The nexus of great young art in Miami.
US, HI, Oahu
Mitch’s Sushi Get everything on the menu. BYOB!! Also a great stop before your flight home as it’s literally next to the airport.
Creekside Lounge It’s rare in Hawaii to find a truly great dive bar. This is it. Kailua.
La Mariana Sailing Club Also Oahu’s first Tiki Bar, this joint is rich in old-school Hawaiiana. Hit a drink here before heading to Mitch’s.
US, IL, Chicago
Spacca Napoli Pizzeria A little outside the city center, & very worth it. One of the best Italian restaurants in the country.
MFK Restaurant Sombra margaritas. Head-on prawns. Half of the restaurant is bar seating. Everything about this place feels right.
James Hotel They have a GREAT gym. In the world of lots of travel, you pledge allegiance to a place like this.
US, IN, Indy 500
Indy 500: Impossible to believe until you’re actually there. Make it happen- it’s insanely cool.
US, LA, New Orleans
Felix’s Oyster Bar Because the guys shucking.
Camellia Grill BLT. Coffee. Culture. Perhaps the only diner that can rival Cup & Saucer in NYC.
Domilise's Po’Boy Nuff said.
Bacchanal Grab a bottle of wine from the shop, find a seat outside, order your food, bus your own table. Genius.
US, LA, Tabasco Factory
Avery Island, Tabasco Factory: One of the most beautiful spots in our country- birds, alligators, Tabasco-flavored Cheeze-Its.
US, MA, Boston
US, MA, Boston
Neptune Oyster Worth the wait. Get everything on the menu.
US, NV, Las Vegas
Chada Thai Let Bank the man blow your mind with his cooking and wine expertise.
Lotus of Siam Yes, another Thai spot, and yes, worth it. Ask for the wine list.
US, NY, Coney Island
Coney Island Cyclone: It’s not the biggest or the fastest, but it’s still one of the best.
US, NY, Hudson
US, NY, Hudson
Bonfiglio & Bread Best bakery in America, we reckon.
US, NY, New York City
Cup & Saucer Diner Get a 60 minute/$40 massage at Foot Spa (see below), then hop across the street for a Fish on a Bun here. Chinatown Special.
Fuleen Get a crab. If you’re feeling adventurous, pick out your own eel. BYOB makes it extra awesome.
Bohemian Special. Very special.
Taquitoria Late nite snacks & laughs.
Maison Premiere Brooklyn: Champagne, oysters, and the best daiquiri in town.
Ilili Order Musar Blanc & ask for extra harissa.
Somtum Der You like spice and uber-umami?
Donostia When you crave Spanish snacks & great sherry, this is the spot.
Great NY Noodletown Open til 4am. BYOB
Astoria Seafood The trip to Astoria takes you to NYC from another era: all Greek, all Great. Pick your fish, tell em how you want it (grill? plancha? fried?), join along when other tables break into song, & BYOB.
Ludlow Hotel Stay in a Skybox!
The NoMad Treat yourself.
Japan Premium Beef Pork chops and bacon WHAT. Butchery as beauty.(We bring it home in our carry-ons.)
New York Beach Ferry Explore the magic of NYC in summer, when water taxis are the jam, & the beach is only a beautiful boat ride away. BYOB
Attaboy In the OG Milk & Honey space; our favorite bar in NYC.
169 Bar Looking for a great dive?
Jimmy’s Corner Photos of Jimmy in his boxing days line the walls, while Jimmy in his present-day self chills at the bar.
Central Park Lake: Row Boats! Picnic here. BYOB and BYOSunscreen.
US, TN, Nashville
Robert’s Western World Sit at the bar, near the grill. Fried bologna sandwich, chips, American beer.
The Catbird Seat This is one of the spots that everyone knows about. There’s a reason. Bribe whomever necessary to get in.
Rolf & Daughters If you can’t get into Catbird, come here and console yourself with their on-point pastas.
Union Station Hotel Nashville’s version of Grand Central as a hotel, along with day passes to an awesome gym. IT MATTERS. Genius.
US, TX, Austin
Find the food trucks.
Hotel San Jose One of the most stylish hotels in the country.
Half Step If you find the food trucks & want a cocktail nearby, this is the place.
Midnight Cowboy NYC cocktail-stylee.
US, TX, Dallas
Tei-An Dallas is big & broad. Tei-An is the opposite. Ask them to pair Japanese whisky with your food.
US, TX, Houston
Mala Sichuan Bistro One of the best Chinese restaurants in the country, in our opinion. BYOB
West Alabama Ice House Get a buzz on here...
Cy Twombly Gallery at The Menil Collection ...then visit here.
US, TX, Marfa
Donald Judd/ The Chinati Foundation Go look at what’s in the artillery sheds: one of the most moving art experiences in the world. Sh*t is bananas.
US, VT, Warren
US, VT, Warren
EAT / STAY / PLAY:
The Pitcher Inn Dreamy, super-quaint Relais & Chateaux nestled in a tiny town; drive here from Boston during the Fall and watch the countryside explode in color.