Top Destinations for Authentic Cuisines Eric Gaulin cooking blogI’ve always had an open mind when it comes to cooking and trying new types of foods. I describe it as a “try anything once” mentality. This came, in part, during my youth while traveling to many different parts of the world with my family.  This experience gave me tremendous exposure to all different types of people, cultures, and foods.  It allowed me to see, learn about, and even try many different tastes and native cuisines. 

I am especially grateful for this opportunity because it allowed me to learn more about what my own foods interests.  Since then, I have taken it upon myself to learn more about cooking and the different types of cuisines that are unique to regions around the world.  Although I have my own thoughts on what types of native cuisines are the best and which are the worst, I’ll keep those to myself. Last year,  CNN asked readers to vote for their favorite culinary destination in an open Facebook poll. In June, the findings were published in an article listing the top 10 culinary hotspots according to the voters, along with a quick summary of recommended foods.

Based on the findings in the article, this blog post highlights the Top 5 Destinations Worth Traveling to for Delicious Cuisine:

#5 – Japan (445 votes ).

Best Locations for Authentic Cuisines Eric Gaulin Food BlogIt’s impossible to eat badly in Japan. Typically,  Japanese apply the same precision to their food as they do to their engineering, taking their love for food a step further than most nationalities.

You can get a lavish multi-course kaiseki meal that presents the seasons in a spread of visual and culinary poetry or grab a seat at a revolving sushi conveyor for a solo feast.

#4 – Thailand (470 votes).

Top Destinations for Authentic Cuisines Eric Gaulin Cooking BlogWith influences from China, Malaysia, Indonesia, Myanmar and a royal culinary tradition, Thai cuisine is the best of many worlds.  The combination of so many herbs and spices in each dish produces complex flavors that somehow come together like orchestral music.   For something really flavorful, check out the country’s northeastern — or Isaan — cuisine.

Popular Isaan dishes include som tom (papaya salad), larb moo (minced pork dressed with lime juice, fish sauce, mint leaves, onions, chilies) and ko moo yang (grilled pork neck), which comes with an incredible dipping sauce.

#3 – Italy (810 votes).

Top Destinations for Authentic Cuisines Eric Gaulin Cooking BlogItalian food has enslaved taste buds around the globe for centuries, with its zesty tomato sauces, those clever things they do with wheat flour and desserts that are basically vehicles for cream.  Whether you’ve hit up Sicily to gorge on arancini, made a special trip to Naples to sample the world’s best pizza or took a train to Modena to taste the world’s finest Parmigiano-Reggiano, no corner of Italy will leave your stomach disappointed.

 #2 – Philippines (1,528 votes).

Top Destinations for Authentic Cuisine Eric Gaulin Cooking BlogFilipino food isn’t as well known as the other cuisines on this list, but with more than 7,000 islands and a colorful history, this archipelago has some delicious dishes of its own.  Adobo, for instance, is an ubiquitous dish whipped up in every household in the Philippines. It’s Mexican in origin, but Filipinos found that cooking meat (often chicken and pork) in vinegar, salt, garlic, pepper, soy sauce and other spices, was a practical way to preserve meat without refrigeration.

Lechon, meanwhile, is the Philippines’ most popular party guest. An entire pig is spit-roasted over coals, with the crisp, golden-brown skin served with liver sauce, the most coveted part.

#1 – Taiwan (8, 242 votes)

Top Destinations for Authentic Cuisines Eric Gaulin Cooking blog The island’s food is a mash-up of the cuisine of the Min Nan, Teochew and Hokkien Chinese communities, along with Japanese cooking.  The Taiwanese capital, Taipei, alone has around 20 streets dedicated to snacking. And then there’sTainan, Taiwan’s oldest city, which is often referred to as its food capital.

To read the original CNN article, click here