When my family travels, food is a big part of our trip preparation. While my 13-year-old son can be a finicky eater at home, he is even less willing to try new things when we are traveling. Whether it is a meal that is synonymous with the region or a sweet treat that has received rave reviews, what we eat offers an exceptional impression of our vacatio destination.
While I wouldn’t recommend these 10 foods for a daily diet, all are must try items when traveling in the USA and CANADA
When In New Orleans … eat a BEIGNET
A beignet is basically fried dough with a ton of powdered sugar and it is delicious. My son ate one everyday during our brief stay in New Orleans and while Café Du Monde has the reputation, our vote for the best beignet went to the appropriately named Café Beignet.
When in Los Angeles… eat IN AND OUT BURGER AND FRIES
After hearing that this is where Hollywood stars went after award ceremonies to pig out, we had to stop in and try this famous burger place. While we personally prefer the burgers at Shake Shack, the animal-style fries (a “secret menu” item our Uber driver told us to order) are truly unbelievable. (their fresh cut fries topped with melty cheese, grilled onions and their Thousand Island dressing)
When in Charleston … eat a NASTY BISCUIT
Famously profiled on the Travel Channel, this Hominy Grill breakfast sandwich lives up to the hype. It is a freshly baked biscuit topped with fried chicken, melted cheddar cheese and gravy (which my son ordered on the side, of course).
Also in Charleston … eat HUSHPUPPIES
Hushpuppies are a deep fried cornbread ball that is both sweet and savory at the same time. From that description it might not sound like something you want to eat, but it is surprisingly addictive. On our trip to Charleston there was a server in front of Hyman’s Seafood giving away complimentary hushpuppies while people waited for a table. So we tried one and were hooked! My son made us go back several times for the free samples.
When in San Francisco … eat SOURDOUGH BREAD
Eating soup in a sourdough bread bowl at the legendary Boudin Bakery at Fisherman’s Wharf is positively incredible. Add in the gooey grilled cheese to dip in it and it’s even better. For a perfect end to this quintessential SF meal, head over The Original Ghirardelli Ice Cream and Chocolate Shop for a sundae.
When in Chicago … eat DEEP DISH PIZZA
This is not ordinary pizza. The crust is much thicker than a Sicilian slice. In fact, it’s more – more like a cheese and sauce casserole then a traditional pizza. But it is a must eat in Chicago – to say you tried it, at the very least.
When in New York City … eat (or drink…) a BLACK TAP MILKSHAKE
All last summer my son begged us to to stop by Black Tap in NYC to have one of their famous Instagram-worthy milkshakes. I’m still not sure it was worth the hour wait in line (and we got lucky that day – it’a usually longer!) but it was yummy. The burgers are good here too, as are the onion rings.
When in Maine … eat a LOBSTER ROLL
I like lobster rolls well enough. That is until we had the brown butter lobster roll at Eventide Oyster Co. in Portland, Maine. The only thing more delicious than the filling is the roll it comes in. My son soon became an avid fan of fried oysters after he sampled them here.
When in Hawaii … eat a SHAVED ICE
Looks like a snow cone but tastes different. Snow cones are made from crushed ice but shave ice is actually shaved and flavored syrup is added to the actual ice. We had this delicious treat three times when we were in Maui at Ululani’s Hawaiian Shave Ice.