Paris, London, Italy, and more
Owner of seven New York City restaurants; author of the new book Molto Italiano; star of Molto Mario on the Food Network
Rome The world's best cappuccino is at the Rome airport ($2.40). When you pass through customs, go to the bar on the left.
Florence The best tripe sandwich is from a stand on the corner of Via de' Macci and Borgo la Croce at the Sant'Ambrogio Market ($3). The best porchetta sandwich is at a truck parked near the Calenzano-Sesto Fiorentino exit on Autostrada del Sole heading north ($4).
Editor of Saveur magazine
Ireland In Cork City, there's a stylish new tapas bar, Boqueria, that manages to serve authentic Spanish food while using lots of Irish artisanal products. The charcuteria assortment, for example, has Spanish ham as well as assorted salamis from West Cork. They also serve non-Spanish breakfasts, with free-range farmhouse eggs and stone-cut oatmeal from nearby Macroom. In an unexpected way, this Spanish restaurant gives visitors more of a taste of Ireland than many Irish places. 6 Bridge St., 011-353/21-455-9049, charcuteria $20.
Chef/owner of Chez Panisse in Berkeley, Calif., and a champion of sustainable farming
Italy Pietro Romanengo in Genoa has amazing candied fruit, almonds, and marzipan. The place has been family-owned since the 18th century (Via Soziglia 74r, 011-39/010-247-4574, marzipan $5). Nietzsche used to sip coffee at Caffè Al Bicerin in Turin. The special drink, called a Bicerin, is beautifully layered with chocolate, cream, and coffee (5 Piazza Della Consolata, 011-39/011-43-69-325, Bicerin $5).
Chef and owner of Jacques Torres Chocolate and Chocolate Haven in New York City
France One of my favorite pastry shops is Pâtisserie Cottard in Antibes. He has gorgeous cakes and fabulous pastries. I always try to stop there on my way to or from the Nice airport. 49 rue République, 011-33/4-93-34-09-92, almond croissant $2.
DAN PHILIPS Creator of The Grateful Palate, a gourmet catalog and website
Spain Combarro, in Madrid, has a glass floor, so you can see all the seafood swimming beneath you (José Ortega y Gasset 40, 011-34/915-778-272, fillet of hake $20). The finest paella is at Paco Gandia in Pinoso. They put twigs in bundles in an open hearth and a gigantic paella pan, with rabbit and snails, over it (Calle San Francisco 2, 011-34/965-478-023, $22).
Chef/owner of Jasper White's Summer Shack, four locations around New England
Ireland I'm a seafood nut, and Ireland is one of the great seafood places of the world. Kinsale, in the south, has a beautiful harbor and a little bistro called Fishy Fishy Café. It's a little fish market--maybe 25 seats--with blue and red tiles. They fillet the fish right there. Oh, God, we ate so many things. Irish lobsters--they're as good as Maine lobsters. Fresh prawns that come right from the boats. Black sole, a beautiful fish. It's the restaurant I want to open someday. You know, you feel the love. Market Place, 011-353/21-477-4453, prawns $17.
Chef and owner of Topolobampo and Frontera Grill, both based in Chicago
Mexico City In Condesa, El Farolito has super-memorable steak tacos, grilled over charcoal. Incredibly delicious. But don't overlook their tacos al pastor, with pork and red chili sauce (Altata 19, Colonia Condesa, 011-52/55-5273-7297, taco al pastor $1). Churrería el Moro has the best churros in the world (Eje Central Lázaro Cardenas No. 42, Colonia Centro, 011-52/55-5518-4580, four churros and hot chocolate $3.50).
Chef at The Modern, at the Museum of Modern Art in New York City; he was raised in Alsace, France
Strasbourg Chez Yvonne has the best presskopf ($11), a pâté made from a pig's head (10 rue du Sanglier, 011-33/3-88-32-84-15). And Munsterstuewel has marvelous choucroute with all the little things ($30)--pork shank, four types of sausage, bacon, sauerkraut, and house quenelles (8 place du Marché-aux-Cochons-de-Lait, 011-33/3-88-32-17-63).
Cofounder of the Scharffen Berger chocolate company
Paris Du Pain et Des Idées boulangerie specializes in rustic bread with a perfectly crunchy crust. In addition to the bread, there are a few pastries, such as seasonal fruit tarts and pain au chocolat (34 rue Yves Toudic, 011-33/1-42-40-44-52, pain au chocolat $1.30). Pizza Grill Istanbul is suggestive of life at the eastern edge of Europe. Choices include tomato, lettuce, and feta cheese salads; tender lamb shish kebabs; and a salted yogurt drink called ayran that's quite refreshing (66 rue du Faubourg Saint-Denis, 011-33/1-48-00-98-10, lamb shish kebabs $11). Le Réveil du 10ème is something of a quartier secret (35 rue de Château d'Eau, 011-33/1-42-41-77-59, veal dinner $14).
Co-owner and chef of Fore Street in Portland, Maine
Venice Everywhere my wife and I went in Venice we asked our servers where they eat. They all had the same answer: Al Nuovo Galeon, in the Castello neighborhood. There's a piazza outside, and Mom's running back and forth with mouth-fuls of scampi to watch the kids. They'll bring you a huge platter of seafood with spider crab, shrimp, octopus, squid, sea bass, and a couple other things. It's all glistening and served with mild olive oil. They'll give you a hard time if you order anything complex like risotto. 1308 Via Garibaldi, 011-39/041-520-4656, seafood platter $54.
Owner of Murray's Cheese Shop in New York City
Barcelona I recently went to a little bar in Boqueria called Bar Pinocho and ate chungete, needle-thin deep-fried fish; prawns, cooked simply with olive oil; and clams with an egg broken onto them. But the best was the baby squid cooked with white beans and squid ink and finished in balsamic and grain salt. La Rambla 91, 011-34/93-317-17-31, baby squid $12.
Author of the best-selling book French Women Don't Get Fat and president and CEO of the American arm of Veuve Clicquot
Paris: There's a little pastry shop near where I live called Gerard Mulot. People from all over the world go there. You don't have to spend $30 to sit down at a table in a chichi place on the boulevard Saint-Germain. Spend $3 and take your pastry to Luxembourg Gardens, just up the street. 76 rue de Seine, 011-33/1-43-26-85-77.
Host of the PBS series How to Cook Everything: Bittman Takes on America's Chefs and food columnist for the New York Times
Paris Les Fontaines is a relatively inexpensive, kid-friendly place near Luxembourg Gardens. This isn't haute cuisine--it's consistently good and affordable food, in a neighborhood where everybody happens to find themselves anyway. 9 rue Soufflot, 011-33/1-43-26-42-80, beef fillet $24.
Rome At Da Franco, there's a menu, but no one ever uses it. 2 Via dei Falisci, 011-39/06-495-7675, dinner $20.
Cheese buyer for Whole Foods
Paris Laurent DuBois (2 rue de Lourmel, 011-33/1-45-78-70-58) and Quatrehomme (62 rue de Sèvres, 011-33/1-47-34-33-45).
London Neal's Yard Dairy. 6 Park St., Borough Market, 011-44/207-645-3554.
Bordeaux Fromagerie Jean D'Alos. 4 rue Montesquieu, 011-33/5-56-44-29-66.
Lyon: Fromagerie de Montbrison. 1 rue Grenette, Montbrison, 011-33/4-77-96-16-74.
Venice: Latteria Moro. 10 via Savonarola Girolamo, Oderzo, 011-39/042-271-7895.
Brewmaster at Brooklyn Brewery, author of The Brewmaster's Table, a cookbook
Paris Il Était une Oie dans le Sud-Ouest--an unassuming café near the Arc du Triomphe--specializes in foie gras. There's a toaster on every table. You toast your own bread and order duck foie gras any way you like it. No pretension or frills--it's all about the foie. 8 rue Gustave Flaubert, 011-33/1-43-80-18-30, foie gras $30.
Italy In Brugnato, near La Spezia, the Taverna Dei Golosi (it means "The Glutton's Tavern") has magnificent Ligurian mountain cuisine. The Santamaria family will ply you with fresh vegetable terrines, and a dish I dream about--pork tenderloin in a Gorgonzola sauce (16 Via Borgo S. Bernardo, 011-39/018-789-5007, pork tenderloin $30). During warm months at Osteria Veglio in La Morra, you can sit outside on the balcony with the vineyards rolling out in front of you. The food is nothing short of spectacular. The raw milk panna cotta is so good that it may ruin you for any other--for life (9 Frazione Annunziata, 011-39/017-350-9341, panna cotta $7.75).
Chef at Aquavit in New York, author of Aquavit and the New Scandinavian Cuisine
Stockholm Sturehof is a great brasserie where, at some point of the day, everybody in town seems to stop by. I always order the seafood platter, which comes with all sorts of Swedish seafood, and shellfish, lobster, and oysters, great herring, very traditional. Stureplan 2, 011-46/8-440-57-30, seafood platter $60.
Author of six books on Italian food, including Essentials of Classic Italian Cooking and Marcella Cucina
Venice In Venice, cicchetti are a little like tapas, but different. You can have small little sandwiches with a glass of wine. It makes a nice light lunch. They're served at casual cafés called bacari. There are two bacari near the fish market. One is Bancogiro (122 Campo San Giacometto, 011-39/041-523-2061, sandwich $1.20) and the other is Do Mori (429 Calle dei Do Mori, 011-39/041-522-5401, $1.50). They have plates of things out so you can point and say what you want.