Travel

New York

NEW YORK is one of the world’s greatest restaurant destinations, offering more fantastic places to eat than you could visit in a lifetime. But that’s just one part of the food scene. In a city made up of distinct boroughs, each with their own personality, it’s through the delis, food halls, sandwich shops and noodle joints that you really get to taste the city. It’s also a simpler and faster way to eat – and it’s good value. Check out my top picks in New York.

Cape Town

CAPE TOWN: Whenever I visit South Africa, it feels like I’m there for the first time; there are always new experiences to be had. The country is full of wonderful people, stunning cities, the most breathtaking game lodges, incredible wildlife and exquisite flora. Everyone should visit at least once. And while you’re there, eat, eat, eat! Here’s where I like to wine and dine in Cape Town.

Sydney

SYDNEY: I love Japanese food and often dream of Tokyo. The food there is so good that it’s almost impossible to have a bad meal; each restaurant usually specialises in a certain style of dish, which means it’s so disciplined. Fortunately, we have some great Japanese restaurants in Australia. In my home town of Sydney, find out the places that I like to visit to feel like I’m stepping out in Tokyo.

Melbourne

MELBOURNE: Lune Croissanterie in Melbourne’s Fitzroy makes some of the world’s greatest pastries. Believe me, I know my pastries. I’ve eaten a lot of them in countries that are famous for their pâtisseries. And I’m not the only one who thinks this place is sensational; the 60- odd people queuing with me clearly agree. It’s not just the pastries that make Lune an incredible experience. It’s also the story, the process, the beauty of the space and the endeavour of the team that captivates me. Check it out.

Sydney

SYDNEY has so many great cafés and restaurants – we really are spoiled for choice, even when it comes to the (not-so) humble sandwich. Once a quick and simple lunch or snack, these days “sangas” are a mini meal in themselves – filled with all sorts of gourmet delights inspired by favours from Japan to Italy and every cuisine in between. There are four places I go to for smashing sandwiches. They’re not the only thing on the menu but they’re certainly my favourites. Check them out.

Los Angeles

LOS ANGELES: Los Angeles is awash with quality restaurants and lots of great hole-in-the-wall eateries. It’s ethnically diverse and if you follow food critic Jonathan Gold’s recommendations, you can enjoy extremely good food at very simple places. Watch his documentary, City of Gold, to really get inspired about what LA has to offer. Check out my favourite spots to grab a bite when I’m in town.

Melbourne

MELBOURNE: There are days when three meals just aren’t enough. The English counter this with a little break for elevenses (scones, tea, maybe a nip of something stronger) or go all-out with an indulgent high tea. They’re not alone –in continental Europe you may be offered a goûter by the French, while the Spanish fill the gap between breakfast and lunch (or lunch and dinner) with merienda (in Italy it’s merenda). In my opinion, the Chinese hold the ultimate tea ceremony with yum cha. As for Australia, here are a few of my favourite places to help get me through to the next meal.

London

LONDON is a vibrant food city. Fifteen years ago, I would have flown through it to get to Paris, never thinking about stopping for the food and restaurants, but now it’s one of my favourite destinations. If you get lucky with the weather, there really isn’t a better city to be in. Yes, it’s full of amazing tourist attractions – from Buckingham Palace to walks through beautiful Hyde Park – but some of the best spots are indoors in its fine restaurants. Here are my top picks. 

Aspen

ASPEN, in Colorado’s Rocky Mountains, is a fantastic ski town because it’s a proper town, not just a resort. What that means is fun – and good food – all year round. There are four mountains to ski on and transport between them is free and easy. The view over the town from the Silver Queen Gondola is spectacular. Here are my top Aspen picks.

Tokyo

TOKYO: I’ve been told there are 80,000 restaurants in Tokyo. I can’t vouch for the accuracy of that information but I can promise you one thing: it’s next to impossible to have a bad meal in the Japanese capital. The level of quality produce and dedication to the craft of cooking seems inherent in the culture. Many of the places are small and hidden away. Do your best to search them out and never leave the hotel without a return business card so you can find your way “home”. Here are my top picks.

San Francisco

SAN FRANCISCO: Eating out in and around San Francisco is a culinary treat. The variety of tastes and cooking styles means you never get bored. Try Delarosa for fantastic handmade pastas, wood-fired Roman-style pizzas and share plates. Highlights include a burrata bruschetta with roasted hazelnuts and local honey, a dish of warm winter chicory with cauliflower, hazelnuts and balsamic dressing, kale and romaine caesar salad with croutons and pecorino, and crispy brussels sprouts with caper aioli.

Dubai

DUBAI: There once was a time when Dubai was known for warm weather, dune bashing and little else. But in fairly short order – no more than 15 years – it’s become a fine-dining destination as a slew of high-profile restaurant brands have set up shop. My three favourite places to eat in Dubai all originated in London, but made the trek south-east and are now as famous and as busy as their UK motherships. Each offers great design, fastidious attention to detail and a first-class food experience.

Perth

PERTH: With all the travelling I do to keep my restaurants in Sydney, Melbourne and Perth ticking over nicely, I sometimes forget to have three square meals a day. But I refuse to forgo breakfast. Morning calls for simple food, done well. Or, to put it another way, great produce that’s been cooked (or stirred, or juiced) to perfection. Here are my picks for where to break your fast in Perth.