The process we went through to make these top 100 lists was to start by creating a long list of finalists and then working through them together to choose and rank those we were most excited about. For both this list and the top sights list, that meant leaving an awful lost of tasty options off the final list.
What remains below covers many kinds of food and drink from breakfast to late night snacks and everything in between. Some familiar items that we are excited to try at their most authentic and many unfamiliar that we are looking forward to sampling for the first time.
As before we’d love to hear your feedback – what would be your #1 choice and what have we missed? Leave us a comment. We hope this list will whet your appetite as much as it has ours. Here are our top 100:
#100 Century Egg – also known thousand-year egg, millennium egg, skin egg and black egg. A Chinese preserved food product and delicacy made by preserving duck, chicken or quail eggs in a mixture of clay, ash, salt, quicklime, and rice hulls for several weeks to several months, depending on the method of processing.
#99 Bakpao – type of filled bun or bread-like dumpling in various Chinese cuisines. There are many variations in fillings and preparations. Very similar to the traditional Chinese mantou.
#98 Blue Wine – fermented from a combination of red grapes and white grapes, with two plant pigments and sweeteners being added. … The name of blue wine is from its colour, which is an electric blue. The first Blue Wine originated in a Spanish Winery called Gik in 2016.
#97 Iskendar Kebab – one of the most well-known dishes of northwestern Turkey. It takes its name from its inventor, İskender Efendi, who lived in Bursa in the late 19th century Ottoman Empire.
#96 Malang Tod – Thai for ‘fried insects.’ Typically fried in pepper and soy or fish sauce, crickets, worms, and grasshoppers are usually eaten as a snack in the afternoon, or paired with beer or liquor as a crunchy and crispy night time treat.
#95 Vodka – a clear distilled alcoholic beverage that originates from Poland and Russia. It is composed primarily of water and ethanol, but sometimes with traces of impurities and flavorings.
#94 Lamingtons – an Australian cake, made from squares of butter cake or sponge cake coated in an outer layer of chocolate sauce and rolled in desiccated coconut. The thin mixture is absorbed into the outside of the sponge cake and left to set, giving the cake a distinctive texture.
#93 Patatas Bravas – a dish native to Spain, often served as a tapa in bars. It typically consists of white potatoes that have been cut into irregular cubes of about two centimetres, then fried in oil and served warm with a sauce such as a spicy tomato sauce.
#92 Trdelnik – a kind of spit cake popular in Hungary and Slovakia. It is made from rolled dough that is wrapped around a stick, then grilled and topped with sugar and walnut mix.
#91 Sahlab – a popular beverage in the lands of the Ottoman Empire. Its consumption spread beyond there to England and Germany before the rise of coffee and tea and it was later offered as an alternative beverage in coffee houses.
#90 Svickova – a Czech meat dish and one of the most popular Czech meals. It is sirloin steak prepared with vegetables, spiced with black pepper, allspice, bay leaf and thyme, and boiled with double cream.
#89 Kottbullar – known all over the world as Swedish meatballs. The traditional way to prepare kottbullar is köttbullar med gräddsås or meatballs with cream sauce.
#88 Almdudler – a sweetened carbonated beverage made of herbal extracts. Almdudler has been called the “national drink of Austria”. Its popularity in Austria is second only to Coca-Cola. About 80 million litres of the beverage are produced per year.
#87 Soutzoukakia me Hilopitakia – a form of meatballs served on top of egg pasta with tomato sauce. Think of it as the Greek version of spaghetti and meatballs.
#86 Hawawshi – a traditional Egyptian dish. It is a pita stuffed with minced meat and spiced with onions, pepper, parsley, and occasionally chilies. The major variants of hawawshi are “baladi” and Alexandrian.
#85 Aigua de Valencia – a cocktail made from a base of cava or champagne, orange juice, vodka … it was made for the first time in 1959 Constante Gil in the bar Cafe Madrid de Valencia, in Valencia, Spain.
#84 Bircher Muesli – a cold Swiss breakfast cereal dish based on rolled oats and ingredients like grains, nuts, seeds and fresh or dried fruits. This mix may be combined with one or more liquids and left for a time to soften the oats before being consumed.
#83 Ais Kasang – a Malaysian dessert which is also common in Singapore and Brunei. Traditionally, an ice shaving machine is used to churn out the shaved ice used in the dessert, originally hand cranked but now more often motorised.
#82 Nan Gyi Thohk – a thoke salad dish in Burmese cuisine, made with thick round rice noodles mixed with specifically prepared chicken curry. It has been equated as a Burmese version of spaghetti.
#81 Kaiserschmarrn – a sweet dessert that takes its name from the Austrian emperor Franz Joseph I, who was very fond of this kind of fluffy shredded pancake.
#80 – Dhokla – a vegetarian food item that originates from the Indian state of Gujarat. It is made with a fermented batter derived from rice and split chickpeas. Dhokla can be eaten for breakfast, as a main course, as a side dish, or as a snack.
#79 Blejska Kremna Rezina – a custard and chantilly cream cream cake dessert popular in Slovenia. There are many regional variations, but they all include a puff pastry base and custard cream.
#78 Geysztenyepure – puréed, sweetened chestnuts topped with whipped cream, popular in Hungary.
#77 Maizes Zupa – a Latvian dessert made out of sweetened dark rye bread, dried fruit, water and whipped cream.
#76 Powidtascherl – eaten mainly in Austria and the Czech Republic . The word Powidl comes from the Czech and means something like plum jam.
#75 Picarones – a Peruvian dessert that originated in Lima during the viceroyalty. It is somewhat similar to buñuelos, a type of doughnut brought to the colonies by Spanish conquistadors. Its principal ingredients are squash and sweet potato. It is served in a doughnut form and covered with syrup, made from chancaca.
#74 Som Tum – a spicy salad made from shredded unripe papaya. Probably originating from ethnic Lao people, it is also eaten throughout Southeast Asia.
#73 Granizados – an icy beverage of Spain, Central and South America. It varies regionally. In Colombia it consists of crushed or shaved ice with semi-sweet milk, fruit syrup or chocolate syrup dripped on top.
#72 Falooda – a cold dessert with origins in the Indian subcontinent. It is a version of the Iranian faloodeh. Traditionally it is made from mixing rose syrup, vermicelli, sweet basil seeds with milk, often served with ice cream..
#71 Blini – a Russian pancake traditionally made from wheat or buckwheat flour and served with smetana, tvorog, butter, caviar, vodka and other garnishes.. They are also known as blintzes, crepes or palatschinke.
#70 Bacalhaus a Bras – made from shreds of salted cod, onions and thinly chopped fried potatoes, all bound with scrambled eggs. It is said to have originated in Bairro Alto, an old quarter of Lisbon.
#69 Pavlova – a meringue-based cake named after the Russian ballerina Anna Pavlova. It is a meringue dessert with a crisp crust and soft, light inside, usually topped with fruit and whipped cream and very popular in Australia.
#68 Leche Frita – a Spanish sweet typical of northern Spain. It is made by cooking flour with milk and sugar until it thickens to a firm dough which is then portioned, fried and served with a sugar glaze and cinnamon powder.
#67 Kulfi – a frozen dairy dessert originating from the Indian subcontinent in the 16th century. It is often described as “traditional South Asian ice cream.
#66 Kai Jeow Pak -one of the simplest Thai dishes but is a great protein-rich quick meal on the go or accompanying dish. Kai jeow is usually served on rice and served with sweet chilli sauce. Ask for “kai jeow pak” if you would like some vegetables added to your Thai omelette.
#65 Iles Flottante – The classic French childhood treat of sticky poached meringues in a pool of sweet custard.
#64 Hagelslag – In the Netherlands, hagelslag refers to small pieces of confectionery, similar to sprinkles, which are used as a sandwich topping. Bread is first smeared with butter and then sprinkled with hagelslag.
#63 Dondurma – a Turkish mastic ice cream. It is similar to the Syrian dessert booza. Dondurma typically includes the ingredients cream, whipped cream, salep, mastic, and sugar. It is believed to originate from the city and region of Maraş and hence also known as Maraş ice cream.
#62 Balut – a developing bird embryo that is boiled and eaten from the shell. It originated from and is commonly sold as street food in Vietnam. The Tagalog and Malay word balot means “wrapped”. Popular as an eating challenge in ‘Survivor’.
#61 Quiche Lorraine – a savoury dish consisting of pastry crust filled with eggs, milk or cream, and gruyere cheese, bacon and onions. Quiche can be served hot or cold. It is part of French cuisine but is also popular in other countries, particularly as party food.
#60 Peking Duck – a dish from Beijing that has been prepared since the imperial era. The meat is characterized by its thin, crisp skin, with authentic versions of the dish serving mostly the skin and little meat, sliced in front of the diners by the cook.
#59 Polse – a type of brightly red, boiled pork sausage very common in Denmark. Since hot dog stands are ubiquitous in Denmark, some people regard røde pølser as one of the national dishes. They are made of the Vienna type and the skin is colored with a traditional red dye.
#58 Rababergrod – a rhubarb compote that’s a popular summer dessert in Denmark. The rhubarb stalks are boiled and made into a sugary syrup.
#57 Pisco Sour – an alcoholic cocktail of Peruvian origin that is typical of the cuisines from Chile and Peru. The drink’s name comes from pisco, which is its base liquor, and the cocktail term sour, in reference to sour citrus juice and sweetener components.
#56 Kofola – a carbonated soft drink produced by Czech company Kofola, headquartered in Krnov, Czech Republic. It is the principal rival of Coca-Cola and Pepsi in the Czech Republic and Slovakia.
#55 Asado – the techniques and the social event of having or attending a barbecue in various South American countries, where it is also a traditional event. An asado usually consists of beef, pork, chicken, chorizo, and morcilla which are cooked on a grill, called a parrilla, or an open fire.
#54 Port – a Portuguese fortified wine produced with distilled grape spirits exclusively in the Douro Valley in the northern provinces of Portugal. It is typically a sweet, red wine, often served as a dessert wine, though it also comes in dry, semi-dry, and white varieties.
#53 Tula Pryanik – a famous type of imprinted Russian gingerbread from the city of Tula. Usually, Tula pryanik looks like a rectangular tile or a flat figure. Making stamped pryanik is considered an art form. The imprints could include different patterns, symbols, images of the Tula Kremlin, names, etc.
#52 Pizza Frita – an Italian dish consisting of a pizza that instead of being baked in an oven is deep-fried, resulting in a different flavor and nutritional profile
#51 Rouladen – a German meat dish, usually consisting of bacon, onions, mustard and pickles wrapped in thinly sliced beef which is then cooked.
#50 Fondue – a Swiss melted cheese dish served in a communal pot over a portable stove heated with a candle or spirit lamp, and eaten by dipping bread into the cheese using long-stemmed forks.
#49 Tartufo – an Italian ice cream dessert originating from Pizzo, Calabria. It is usually composed of two or more flavors of ice cream, often with either fruit syrup or frozen fruit — typically raspberry, strawberry, or cherry — in the center.
#48 Somloi Galuska – one of the best known Hungarian confectionery products. It is made of sponge cake with chocolate sauce and whipped cream decoration.
#47 Cuy – one of Peru’s most famous dishes, is possibly not for the faint of heart; it’s fried or roasted guinea pig, and it’s a Peruvian delicacy.
#46 Smorgasbord – a type of Scandinavian meal, originating in Sweden, served buffet-style with multiple hot and cold dishes of various foods on a table.
#45 Gulab Jamun – a milk-solid-based sweet from the Indian subcontinent, popular in India, Nepal, Pakistan, the Maldives, and Bangladesh, as well as Myanmar.
#44 Berliner Pfannkuchen – a traditional German pastry similar to a doughnut with no central hole, made from sweet yeast dough fried in fat or oil, with a marmalade or jam filling and usually icing, powdered sugar or conventional sugar on top.
#43 Pie Floater – traditional Australian-style meat pie, usually sitting, but sometimes submerged (sometimes upside down) in a bowl of thick pea soup made from blue boiler peas.
#42 Alfajores – a traditional confection found in Argentina, Chile, Uruguay, Colombia, Peru, Bolivia, Southern France, Ecuador, Andorra, Spain, Paraguay, Venezuela, Southern Brazil and the Philippines. The archetypal alfajor entered Iberia during the period of al-Andalus.
#41 Poke – a traditional Cook Islands recipe for a classic dessert of cooked bananas mixed with milk, thickened with arrowroot, and sweetened with sugar that’s baked and served in coconut milk.
#40 Speculoos – a type of spiced shortcrust biscuit, traditionally baked for consumption on or just before St Nicholas’ day in the Netherlands, Belgium, and around Christmas in Germany and Austria.
#39 Apfelstrudel – a traditional Viennese strudel, a popular pastry in Austria and in many countries in Europe that once belonged to the Austro-Hungarian Empire.
#38 Tortilla Espanola – literally Spanish tortilla. It is an omelette made with eggs and potatoes, sometimes also with onion; cooked in oil and often served at room temperature as an appetizer. It is part of the cuisine of Spain.
#37 Hokey Pokey Ice Cream – a flavour of ice cream in New Zealand, consisting of plain vanilla ice cream with small, solid lumps of honeycomb toffee. Hokey pokey is the New Zealand term for honeycomb toffee.
#36 Falafel – deep-fried ball, or a flat or doughnut-shaped patty, made from ground chickpeas, fava beans, or both. Herbs, spices, and onion relatives are commonly added to the dough. It is an Egyptian dish as well as a very famous, pseudo-national, Middle Eastern dish, that most likely originated in Egypt.
#35 Spaghetti on Toast – Canned spaghetti (often the Wattie’s brand) served over toast. Why? Not clear. But it’s a standard diner comfort food in New Zealand, and it’s even served as breakfast.
#34 Mocochinchi – a Bolivian beverage. It is made with peaches that have been peeled and dried. The fruits are left in water overnight, then boiled with sugar and cinnamon. The drink is served cold.
#33 Bitterballen – Dutch meat-based snack, typically containing a mixture of beef or veal, beef broth, butter, flour for thickening, parsley, salt and pepper, resulting in a thick roux. Most recipes include nutmeg and there are also variations using curry powder or that add in finely chopped vegetables such as carrot.
#32 Wali wa Nazi – a Tanzanian dish prepared by soaking white rice in coconut milk or cooking it with coconut flakes.
#31 Romeu e Julieta – salty, soft cheese and sweet, guava paste combine in this unique and simple dish, which can be served as a dessert or appetizer in Brazil.
#30 Loukoumades – little bite-sized fluffy sweet honey puffs which are deep fried to golden and crispy perfection. Greek donuts (loukoumades) are traditionally served soaked in hot honey syrup, sprinkled with cinnamon and garnished with chopped walnuts or toasted sesame seeds.
#29 Paczki– Polish doughnuts. Usually full of jelly or some kind of sweet filling. traditional paczki contain a splash of Polish vodka called Spiritus in addition to the flour, eggs, milk, sugar, yeast, and sometimes butter.
#28 Gallo Pinto – traditional dish from Central America. Various countries share the same dish but are prepared differently, such as Nicaragua and Costa Rica. Consisting of rice and beans as a base; Gallo pinto has a long history and is important to various Latin American cultures.
#27 Shawarma – a Middle Eastern meat preparation based on the döner kebab of Ottoman Turkey. Originally made of lamb or mutton, today’s shawarma may also be chicken, turkey, beef, or veal, cut in thin slices and stacked in a cone-like shape on a vertical rotisserie.
#26 Kranjska Klobasa – a Slovenian sausage most similar to what is known as kielbasa or Polish sausage in North America.
#25 Makaronialaatikko – a staple in northern European home cooking. It is a dish of cooked macaroni and a mixture of egg and milk with additional ingredients like meats, vegetables or fish. It is commonly made with cheese and/or breadcrumbs sprinkled on top.
#24 Babi Guling – an Indonesian event or gathering which involves the barbecuing of a whole pig.
#23 Tiramisu – a coffee-flavoured Italian dessert. It is made of ladyfingers dipped in coffee, layered with a whipped mixture of eggs, sugar, and mascarpone cheese, flavoured with cocoa.
#22 Teh Tarik – a hot milk tea beverage which can be commonly found in restaurants, outdoor stalls and kopi tiams within the Southeast Asian country of Malaysia. Its name is derived from the pouring process of “pulling” the drink during preparation. It is made from a strong brew of black tea blended with condensed milk.
#21 Snag on the Dag – involves grilled sausages served on a slice of white sandwich bread with tomato sauce, fried onions and beer. Aussies have a nickname for everything, and this one’s called a snag on the dag (snag=sausage, dag=diagonal, how it’s laid on the bread).
#20 Raggmunk with Lingonberry Jam – the name for a Swedish potato pancake. The pancakes are fried in butter and served with fried pork and jam made from lingonberries, a popular local berry.
#19 Zapiekanka -an open-face sandwich made of half of a baguette or other long roll of bread, topped with sautéed white mushrooms, cheese and sometimes other ingredients, and toasted until the cheese melts. Served hot with ketchup, it is a popular street food in Poland.
#18 Inca Kola – a soft drink that was created in Peru in 1935 by British immigrant Joseph Robinson Lindley using lemon verbena. The soda has a sweet, fruity flavor that somewhat resembles its main ingredient, lemon verbena. Americans compare its flavor to bubblegum or cream soda.
#17 Sachertorte – a specific type of chocolate cake, or torte, invented by Austrian Franz Sacher in 1832 for Prince Wenzel von Metternich in Vienna, Austria. It is one of the most famous Viennese culinary specialties.
#16 Xiaolongbao – type of Chinese steamed bun from the Jiangnan region, especially associated with Shanghai and Wuxi.
#15 Pierogi – filled dumplings of Central and Eastern European origin, made by wrapping unleavened dough around a savory or sweet filling and cooking in boiling water, or pan-frying.
#14 Stroopwafel – a wafer made from two thin layers of baked dough with a caramel syrup filling in the middle. Stroopwafels are popular in the Netherlands, and were first made in the Dutch city of Gouda.
#13 Korvapuusti – a sweet roll served commonly in Finland. It is a form of wienerbrød. Its main ingredients are flour, cinnamon, sugar, and butter, which provide a robust and sweet flavor.
#12 Saltibarsciai – an authentic Lithuanian cold beet soup made with cucumber eggs and dill.
#11 Currywurst – a fast food dish of German origin consisting of steamed, then fried pork sausage typically cut into bite-sized chunks and seasoned with curry ketchup, a sauce based on spiced ketchup or tomato paste, itself topped with curry powder, or a ready-made ketchup seasoned with curry and other spices.
#10 Kanefeh – traditional Middle Eastern dessert made with thin noodle-like pastry, or alternatively fine semolina dough, soaked in sweet, sugar-based syrup, and typically layered with cheese, or with other ingredients such as clotted cream or nuts, depending on the region.
#9 Maultaschen – a traditional German dish that originated in the region of Swabia. It consists of an outer-layer of pasta dough which encloses a filling traditionally consisting of minced meat, smoked meat, spinach, bread crumbs and onions and flavoured with various herbs and spices.
#8 Limonana – a type of lemonade made from freshly-squeezed lemon juice and spearmint leaves that forms a popular summer drink in Egypt, Israel, Cyprus, Jordan, Lebanon, Palestine, and Syria.
#7 Soufflé au Chocolat – a baked egg-based dish which originated in early eighteenth century France. It is made with egg yolks and beaten egg whites combined with chocolate as a dessert.
#6 Weinerbrod – A Danish pastry, sometimes shortened to just Danish, is a multilayered, laminated sweet pastry in the viennoiserie tradition. The concept was brought to Denmark by Austrian bakers, and has since developed into a Danish specialty.
#5 Nalesniki – crepe-like pancakes that can be made as a thin or as a thick Polish crepe. They can be enjoyed with either sweet or savory fillings.
And, lastly, the final 4!
#4 Australian Meat Pies – Bakeries throughout Australia serve up a variety of meat pies, typically made with a mince beef filling with some variations on offer, such as with mushrooms or onions, a cheesy pie lid, or perhaps with chunks of beef for something wonderful like a steak and pepper pie.
#3 Carbonara – an Italian pasta dish from Rome made with egg, hard cheese, guanciale, and black pepper. The dish arrived at its modern form, with its current name, in the middle of the 20th century. The cheese is usually Pecorino Romano, Parmigiano-Reggiano, or a combination of the two.
#2 Sfogliatella – sometimes called a lobster tail in English, sfogliatella is a shell-shaped filled Italian pastry native to Campania. Sfogliatella means “small, thin leaf/layer”, as the pastry’s texture resembles stacked leaves.
#1 Belgian Waffles – a variety of waffle with a lighter batter, larger squares, and deeper pockets than ordinary American waffles. Belgian waffles were originally leavened with yeast, but baking powder is now often used.
Hungry yet? Let us know what you think!!!
8 thoughts on “The 100 Foods and Drinks We’re Excited To Sample”
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Oma Tricia loves your list but wonders if you have planned enough indulgence in Dutch delights, she does not see Droppies (double salt black licorice) on your list 😀
Thanks Nat! Drop was on our list, but just missed the Top 100 cut-off… we’ll be sure to try it out when we are there.
#40, reminds me of my childhood. I remember them being more “windmill” shaped and less like the photo though.
So delicious, either way.
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