I have decided to start a series of questions for people to answer. My plan is to post one dilemma per week for the next couple of months. I'm very interested to see some honest answers up here. (oh, and drop me a message if you have any dilemmas you have faced that you want me to add )
Dilemma no.1 - Local or multinational?
You are wandering the streets of Delhi and the clock strikes 1 - time for lunch. A range of excellent food choices exist, but you have your heart set on fast food on this fine day and you feel all the walking you've done this morning is enough exercise to counter it. As you mingle in the hustle and bustle of this particularly busy intersection, you are confronted with two choices: on the one corner there is a rather familiar looking international fast-food chain. You can rest assured you will get something you recognize and love there, however on the opposite side of the road the opportunity exists to try a local fast food joint you have seen on a few other streets as well, packed and seemingly rather popular. Which do you choose (and why)?
Really hard to say, always a question in my mind when travelling and always a different decision. First, depends on travel plans, Do I have time to be sick? If the answer is yes I usually try local food, if the answer is no (under a tight schedule), then I'll go to something I know already.
Another option is to go to a fancy restaurant of local food, it is possible to found this kind of restaurants in several places. You can have local food safer for your stomach.
Also depends of what kind of food you like (I eat almost anything), probably the local food of Delhi is not for you.
Local food any time.... the only times I've chosen fast food is when my son has been dead tired of eating noodles AND I've never been sick from any food I've eaten, so until that happens I'll probably go for the local food.
Monday this week it'll be Lithuania, not sure what to do there, as people tell me that the food is sooo boring but then we can always go for some bread and cheese or maybe a curry!!
I am afraid I am no help but to let you know this is a dilemma for me too.... My choice depends on several things and it depends on the trip. If time is not an issue and the local places look good (which I usually judge by them being filled with people speaking a language I don't understand; works especially well in Australia ) I will always go for them. If I am travelling with someone, I can easily be persuaded the other way if they are not one for local foods though. It isn't the kind of thing I get too fussed about as long as I get a few good shots at having some quality local food on the way.
Sole, you have never been sick from local food? I am VERY impressed; ever been to Thailand? If so, I think you might have some world record as I have never heard of anyone going there, eating local food and lasting past a week and a half ....I particularly remember a certain Canadian guy who made the bus he was travelling in pull over by the side of an extremely busy freeway to 'perform' for everyone
Good question Pete; looking forward to that next dilemma!
yes, have been to Thailand. The first time I spent almost 4 weeks there, had lots of food from the food stalls in the street (you know where they use the same bowl of water all day for washing the plates and the horrible aluminium spoons ). Most of our meals were in small local restaurant and only one fast food meal. Been to Thailand 2 years ago, had lots of food from the street vendours, no problem.
Have had food from night market in HK, on Bali had most meals from the local "restaurant": a tent set up in the night, serving the most delicious wanton soups!!
But I guess for me it's a mix of having a strong stomach and being lucky and I suppose I haven't travelled as much as a lot of other people here.
I was reading in the paper yesterday about how fast food chains are focussing on making their meals look 'healthy', through advertising and some changes to their menus. A lot of chains here are serving salads, carrot sticks and the likes to try and combat their 'junk' food image as masses of people prefer to eat healthier meals now and thanks to a strong anti-obesity movement - who knows, maybe we'll all be eating McCarrots for a quick snack in times to come
Wow, that is very impressive; you must really have a strong stomach! 4 weeks in Thailand would be pretty fantastic too..... speaking of the food stalls in the streets; the smell is half the fun, don't you think
I am travelling back up Norway way next week so speaking of local food; bring on the salmon!
Sam, hehehe, can't really compare Norwegian salmon to local food in Thailand, can you?? I've actually never been to Norway, my parents had very good Norwegian friends (my father is dead now but my mother keeps in touch with their Norwegian friends) and I've been invited to Norway several times, but have never made it so far. The good thing about the food stalls in Thailand is that it smells damn good, in HK some of it was really horrible, so in Thai. you can't really go wrong.
Just came back from Lithuania today (Saturday) and I'm not proud having to admit that we did have fast food on the day we arrived, pretty difficult to avoid when travelling with 3 kids aged 9, 11 and 12... .. or is it just a bad excuse No, honestly, don't think I've ever even here in Denmark gone to a fast food chain on my own. In Lith. we had mainly local food in the sense that it was a low-budget holiday, so we stayed at camp sites in cabins (really cheap and very good quality) and we bought most of our food in the supermarkets, so I won't see bread, cheese and sausage for the next couple of weeks I also avoided the pigs' ears with peas but did have some dumplings and potato pancakes and of course a lot of local beer