A Grand Food Tour of Europe: 7 Michelin-Starred Meals That Are Worth a TripBy Diana Hubbell
For many travelers, food has become the focal point of a journey rather than a means of sustenance while shuffling between museums. Beach tans may fade and Instagram stories may expire, but the memories of a swoon-inducing feast will last long after the dessert course.
The following restaurants serve the kinds of meals that more than merit booking a plane ticket. As always, check for travel restrictions or closures before planning your trip.
Kabuki; Tenerife, Spain
With its stylish interior and sweeping view of the Atlantic Ocen, Kabuki, also at The Ritz-Carlton, Abama, could easily coast on looks alone. Fortunately, the sophisticated Michelin-starred Japanese fusion menus are every bit as impressive as the scenery.
A tasting menu from chef David Rivero might include anything from lobster sashimi to an updated version of the classic Catalan pa amb tomàquet with luscious, fatty tuna. The daily oyster and caviar bar from 4:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. makes for a decadent prelude to dinner.
Enoteca Paco Pérez; Barcelona, Spain
Chef Paco Pérez nods to culinary masters like Michel Guérard, one of the visionaries behind French nouvelle cuisine, and Ferran Adrià, the father of molecular gastronomy, while at the same time creating something entirely original.
The bounty of the Mediterranean is front and center at his two-Michelin-starred eatery in Hotel Arts Barcelona, currently helmed by chef Alexandre Vehí. Tasting menus at Enoteca Paco Pérez rotate constantly to reflect the shifting seasons but always emphasize the region’s holy trinity of olive oil, wheat and wine. The latter comes from a cellar with more than 700 bottles, many rare and all impeccably sourced.
Aqua; Wolfsburg, Germany
From the scintillating, woven metal curtains by Parisian artist Sophie Mallebranche to the two-meter chandelier with custom glass ornaments by Brigitte Bonnave, every element of the serene AQUA restaurant at The Ritz-Carlton, Wolfsburg reflects careful consideration. Chef Sven Elverfeld’s Aqua has held the rare honor of three Michelin stars for more than a decade. Today, his of-the-moment European tasting menus still manage to feel utterly vibrant.
Bayview; Geneva, Switzerland
From his renowned potato “cappuccino” infused with the scent of fresh truffles to his warm lobster salad, chef Michel Roth excels at putting his own distinctive spin on classical French gastronomy. At Bayview, a stunning Michelin one-star tucked into Hotel President Wilson, a Luxury Collection Hotel, Geneva and overlooking Lake Geneva, he crafts dégustation menus studded with sumptuous ingredients such as venison, abalone and foie gras. A sampling from the cheese trolley makes for the perfect coda to a meal.
Es Fum; Mallorca, Spain
After working at multiple three-Michelin-starred restaurants in Spain, Italy and Germany, chef Miguel Navarro turned his attention to one of the most beautiful places in the Balearics, The St. Regis Mardavall Mallorca Resort.
Overlooking the turquoise waters of the Mediterranean, the resort’s Es Fum restaurant specializes in exquisitely plated tasting menus. One bite of foie gras or Fine de Claire oyster is enough to make it clear how this restaurant earned its Michelin star.
M.B.; Tenerife, Spain
Conceptualized by the legendary chef Martín Berasategui and helmed by chef Erlantz Gorostiza, this dazzling restaurant at The Ritz-Carlton, Abama is the only one on Tenerife to boast two Michelin stars.
Dining at M.B. more closely resembles avant-garde theater than a conventional meal. Over the course of seven to eight appetizers followed by 10 dishes, Gorostiza reinterprets elements of Basque culture in contemporary, often surprising, ways.
Marqués de Riscal Gastronomic Restaurant; Elciego, Spain
Housed in an eye-popping space designed by Frank Gehry, the Marqués de Riscal Gastronomic Restaurant at the Hotel Marqués de Riscal, a Luxury Collection Hotel, Elciego infuses traditional Riojan cuisine with a sense of playful innovation. While chef Francis Paniego’s dishes at this Michelin one-star may be sublime, the wine elevates the experience to a whole other level.
Underneath the restaurant is a sprawling wine cave, and a chilled wine rack of 200 bottles from around the globe greets guests as they enter. Once poured into bespoke Zwiesel glasses designed by Enrico Bernardo, the sommelier’s selections make for a truly memorable evening.
Members of Marriott Bonvoy can tempt their taste buds by bidding their points on Marriott Bonvoy Culinary Moments, offering members the opportunity to participate in intimate, hands-on learning classes and dining experiences led by culinary legends around the world. Click here to learn more.