Alicante’s gastronomic diversity (II)
International dining options
Just like thinking only about paellas is a way too simplistic conception of what typical food in Alicante is like, it is also commonplace to state that the Mediterranean is a meeting point for different cultures. And in a globalizing world, even more so. In the province of Alicante we can try food options from other continents that can take us on a journey of flavours around the culinary world. Visitors and residents can enjoy exotic dishes from other countries by visiting the different restaurants that offer the best recipes that represent their culture. We can thus enjoy the world’s variety of food such as the Japanese, Mexican, Indian, Italian, British, or French and Belgian cuisine, to only mention a few. We have the best recommendations for you for those nights when you would like to eat out with friends or family.
Japanese restaurant in Alicante
If we say ‘Washoku!’ please refrain from answering with a ‘Bless you!’. Washoku is the name given to the gastronomic tradition of the Land of the Rising Sun. It is based on a conception of food as an experience for all the senses, including the relevance of colour and of the texture of what is being prepared. Kaiseki ryori is the term used to describe its highest expression. In the last decades Japanese food has witnessed an extraordinary boom in Europe and the Valencian Community has been no exception. And this should come as no surprise since it is also based on love for seafood, such as in the famous sashimi cuts, or its fusion with rice, such as in the delicious sushi. But their soups, ramen noodle dishes or beef recipes, like the sukiyaki, also well deserve a recommendation. You will find options for enjoying them in Alcoy, Benidorm, Denia, Torrevieja, among other places. The latest trend: extraordinary dishes that have been prepared using local ingredients.
Mexican restaurant in Alicante
A culinary tradition that is less widely known in Europe, but that is enjoying a boom, as bubbly and cheerful as a mariachi, is the Mexican one. Mexican food is based on a unique mixture of ingredients, it is an example of how herbs, spices and the products of the land combine to lead us on journey packed with incredible flavours. Although not everything needs to be spicy, it is true that we can find chilis and other peppers and paprika in many of their dishes, adding that extra touch to a greater or lesser degree that have earned its gastronomic culture its world fame. The tacos, the chilaquiles, the quesadillas, the gorditas are but some of the traditional dishes that will make you want to chant ‘¡Que viva México!’ (Long live Mexico!). You can already spot some food establishments in Elche, Orihuela, or the capital of our province.
Indian restaurant in Alicante
But if you are into spices and hot food, then you can also try Indian food. There is probably no country that is so associated with the combination of a large number of herbs and seasoning as India. Yoghurt and coconut oil are also frequently used. It is an excellent option if you are a vegetarian since the Indian subcontinent has historically always been the home of a large amount of communities that apply this philosophy to their eating habits, and many religious dates and festivities actively incorporate it as par of the tradition. They also prepare their famous curries with meat and shrimp, make sure you inform yourself properly as to what everything is if you have a sensitive palate. The best thing to do is to combine different dishes and to accompany them with delicious mango juice. Alfaz del Pí, Jávea, Rojales, Elda, or Pilar de la Horadada are but some of the places in Alicante where you can do so.
Italian restaurant in Alicante
If you want your taste buds to dance with joy, you do not have to cross oceans on a culinary level either. Mamma mia! The cucina italiana is synonymous with simple but fresh food using a limited amount of ingredients of the highest quality that are prepared to perfection. Who has not worn a smile on her or his face thanks to a good bowl of Bolognese or carbonara pasta, a lasagne or an antipasto, not to mention the incredible and unequalled pizzas, a statue should be dedicated to whoever invented this marvel. Let us say no more! When you hear your inner Nonna calling out to you, remember to visit the restaurants of this type in Altea, El Campello, Jávea, Moraira and other places that will leave you dreaming of the Colisseum. And remember, authentic pasta lovers eat it with a fork, they do not cut it nor do they use spoons!
British restaurant in Alicante
Even in a province as blessed by the sun as ours you might feel the need to warm up every once and a while. Offering far more than the renowned fish and chips, the pre-eminent gastronomic tradition for comfort food is the one from Britain. British food is well known for its large variety of sweet and savoury pies, its smoked fish, meat grills and stews, sauces and jellies, potatoes and vegetables. Do not underestimate them: this is the country where Masterchef was born, it boasts over 700 varieties of cheese, and since the nineties of the past century, it has seen a surge in organic food options. Would you rather eat at a buffet with food at fixed rates? Then we recommend you to head towards a carvery. Or are you a fan of quizzes, music, and blond and dark ales? There is no shortage of pubs along the coastline for you to still your appetite while you are routing for your favourite sports team or athlete.
French restaurant in Alicante
Alicante also offers dining options from the opposite side of the Channel. With no intention of giving you the full list, French-inspired cooking stoves look forward to welcoming you in La Nucía, Villajoyosa, Xàbia, Altea, San Fulgencio and Alcoy, while others with a Belgian orientation do so in El Campello, Rojales, Moraira and Torrevieja, among other places. The two culinary traditions are closely linked, due to the extensive historical linkages and the geographical proximity between both countries, of course. The first is well known as a world reference in historical tradition and innovation, for its cheeses and fine wines, and its reliance on regional products. There is a reason why so many culinary terms come from the French language. The second is far more diverse than waffles, fries, beers and chocolate and is strongly linked to seasonal products. In both cases you will taste a continuous orientation towards excellence.
Alicante, land of fine dining
As you will have read in these pages, whether you are a visitor or a local, the province of Alicante offers you plenty of options for enjoying delicious food, from its own tradition with a world fame to options from other countries. This article has only offered a brief introduction to the large variety of options you can find out there. So, walk out that door and get out there to explore them, there truly is no shortage of opportunities for enjoying tasty and exotic dishes in the company of your family and loved ones. On behalf of us here at Exquisitísimo, we would like to wish you: ‘Enjoy your meal!’, because you surely will do so.
By María Fernanda Escalona Granadillo y Alexander Van der Biest